Transcribed from "An Illustrated History of The Big Bend Country, embracing
Lincoln, Douglas, Adams and Franklin counties, State of Washington",
published by Western Historical Publishing Co., 1904.
JACOB SMITH, who resides on Second
street in Sprague, where he owns a handsome modern brick residence, was
born in Baden, Germany, on July 11, 1845, the son of Jacob and Elizabeth
(Young) Smith. The father came to the United States in 1849, being
exiled from Germany on account of his part in the Rebellion of 1849.
He came with George Sigel and others and for many years was pilot on the
Mississippi. He died in St. Louis in 1873. The mother was born
in Germany and died in St. Louis in 1862. Our subject was raised
and educated in St. Louis and at the age of sixteen enlisted in the army,
the date being June 1, 1861. He responded to the first call of President
Lincoln and his term of enlistment was for three years. He was in
the Seventh Missouri Volunteer Infantry as musician, that regiment being
called the Irish Brigade. He was under Generals Lyons and Fremont
and later under Generals Logan and McPherson. He was in the conflict
at Vicksburg, at the Bayou Piers, Raymond, Jackson, Champion Hill and the
Big Black Battle. He participated in three charges at Vicksburg.
He also had the pleasure of seeing Pemberton's surrender to General Grant.
In 1863, Mr. Smith re-enlisted and his regiment was consolidated with the
Eleventh Missouri. He participated in the battle of Nashville, then
went to New Orleans and was in the battles of Mobile, Spanish Fort and
Fort Blakely. Thence he was transferred to Montgomery, Alabama, and
on the way heard of Lee's surrender and Lincoln's death. At Memphis
on January 15, 1866, he was mustered out as senior principal musician of
the regiment. Following that, Mr. Smith went to farming in Illinois,
then went to Nebraska where he took up a soldier's homestead in 1873.
He was appointed postmaster at Hanson by President Hayes. In 1883,
Mr. Smith came to Sprague and took up a pre-emption and since that time
he has been engaged in farming and wheat buying. At the present time,
he rents his fine large estate of fifteen hundred acres and gives his personal
attention to buying wheat in Sprague. His farm is well improved with
a fine two-story modern residence and all barns and buildings necessary.
He has considerable stock and also plenty of machinery.
While in Illinois in 1866, Mr. Smith married
Miss Mary Graham, who died in 1868. Later, he married Miss Louisa
Dunn, who died in 1902. By his first wife, Mr. Smith had one child,
Mrs. Hattie Fish, who lives in Sprague. To the second marriage the
following children have been born, Mrs. Cary Kirkland, of London, England;
Jay, in California; Mrs. Cora Dodson, of Harrington; Joseph; Bennie; Elizabeth;
Minie; and Mrs. Sadie Dunn, of Lincoln county.
Mr. Smith is past commander of the G. A. R.,
at Sprague and also a member of the Masonic order. He was the first
president in the Lincoln County Pioneer Association. Mr. Smith is
a very popular citizen and has well earned his present standing by reason
of his long continued career of uprightness and probity.
In the portrait of Mr. Smith, which appears
in another portion of this work, the reader will note a star on the breast.
That star was presented by Colonel Buchanan, about May 22, 1863, at Vicksburg,
for meritorious service and bravery shown by Mr. Smith, then in the army.