Transcribed from History of Wyandotte County Kansas and its people ed. and comp. by Perl W. Morgan. Chicago, The Lewis publishing company, 1911. 2 v. front., illus., plates, ports., fold. map. 28 cm. [Vol. 2 contains biographical data. Paged continuously.] p. 717-718 transcribed by Chris Casada, student from USD 508, Baxter Springs Middle School, Baxter Springs, Kansas, on December 1, 2000.

John E. Smyth

JOHN E. SMYTH. - The manifold details of the office of city clerk of Kansas City, Kansas, are being most effectively administered by Mr. Smyth, who has been incumbent of this position since 1909 and who is one of the well known and popular citizens of the metropolis of Wyandotte county, where he has maintained his home since 1882.

John Edwin Smyth is a native of the fine old Bluegrass state and is a scion of an old and distinguished southern family, of German lineage. He was born in the village of Liberty, Casey county, Kentucky, on the 27th of February, 1866, and is a son of Robert C. and Nancy W. (Williams) Smyth, the former of whom was born in Smyth county, Virginia, and the latter in Madison county, Kentucky, where the family, of sterling Scotch ancestry, was founded in an early day. It should be noted that Smyth county, Virginia, was named in honor of William Smyth, grandfather of him whose name initiates this review, as this worthy ancestor was numbered among the pioneers and influential citizens of that section of the historic Old Dominion. Robert C. Smyth was a man of fine mentality and sterling character and in his early manhood he was a successful teacher in the schools of his native state. About the year 1870 he removed with his family from Kentucky to Kansas City, Missouri, and later he came to the city of the same name in Kansas, where he followed various occupations during the years that followed. He served as a valiant soldier in the Mexican war, as a member of a Kentucky regiment, and he passed the closing years of his life in Kansas City, Kansas, where he died in 1906, at the venerable age of eighty-four years. His life was one of signal integrity and honor and he ever held the unqualified confidence and esteem of his fellow men. He widow still maintains her home in Kansas City, Kansas, and is eighty-two years of age at the time of this writing, in 1911. Of the nine children only four are now living.

The present city clerk of Kansas City was but four years of age at the time of the family removal from Kentucky to Kansas City, Missouri, and he was sixteen years old when the home was established in Kansas City, Kansas. He was afforded the advantages of the public schools and as a youth he served a thorough apprenticeship to the trade of stereotyping, in which he became a skilled artisan and to which he continued to devote his attention, as an employe in various newspaper offices in Kansas City, Missouri, for a period of fourteen years. In the meanwhile he had maintained his home in Kansas City, Kansas, the greater part of the time, and in 1907 Mayor Cornell here appointed him to the office of license inspector, of which position he continued in tenure until 1909, when he was elected city clerk, for a term of two years, this term expiring in April, 1911. Mr. Smyth is a stanch advocate of the principles and policies for which the Republican party stands sponsor, and in the time-honored Masonic fraternity he has received the thirty-second degree of the Ancient Accepted Scottish Rite, in the affairs of the various bodies of which he takes a deep interest, as does he also in those of the York Rite bodies with which he is affiliated. He is also still identified with the Stereotypers' & Elecrotypers' Union.

In the year 1905 Mr. Smyth was united in marriage to Miss Laura Case, who was at the time a successful and popular teacher in the public schools of Kansas City, Kansas, and who is a valued factor in the social activities of this city.

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