Family Is Always First....The Rest Are Just Strangers!!!
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DEDICATION PAGE
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This website is lovingly dedicated to those family members as well as to those brave Confederate Soldiers, that have passed before us. To the family that I am proud to be a part of, I will always strive to keep your memory fresh and to make you proud. To those brave Soldiers of the Confederacy, I will always try to teach others of what you fought for and the South you tried so valiantly to protect.


George Right Smith
May 01, 1837 to Apr 22, 1903
Here's to my maternal Great Great Grandfather, George R Smith. He lived a long, tumultuous, yet interesting life. He was a farmer, a father, and a soldier... respected by everyone that met him... A man of virtue, strong willed and ready to give his life for the Southern Cause. Loved by his family and revered by those who served with him... We all owe him and the thousands like him, a debt of gratitude, for they struggled and sacrificed for what they believed to be right. Bestowing upon us a great and proud heritage. The picture to the left was contributed by Max Smith and Melanie Capps.

Here's to my Great Great Grandmother, Francis Elizabeth Barilla Spencer Smith also known as Fannie Smith, she was a Wife, a Mother, a Grandmother and a Great Grandmother,she supported her husband and family through some very trying times, Restoration after the War of Northern Aggression, the turn of the century and the Great Depression. Through it all she was a mainstay of the family and was the Matriarch of the George Right Smith family. The picture to the right is contributed by Melanie Capps.
Francis Elizabeth Barilla Spencer Smith
Oct 15, 1842 to Jul 26, 1932
George R. Smith and Family
In the picture to the left are our ancestors that are our reason for existing. I fervently hope they somehow know they are not forgotten and we make them proud. Standing in the back row,from left to right are Robert Warren "Bob" (our Great Grandfather), Lemuel "Eugene", Mary Henrietta "Etta", Ruth Ann "Annie". In the front row are James Arthur, George Right (our Great Great Grandfather), Francis "Fannie" Elizabeth Barilla Spencer (our Great Great Grandmother), and Frances "Ethel" This photo was contributed by Max Smith and Melanie Capps
James Arthur Smith, Frances Ethel Smith,
and Robert Warren Smith

In the picture above can be seen the Reverand James Arthur Smith, his sister Frances Ethel Smith and their brother Robert Warren Smith (Our Great Grandfather). This picture was contributed by Melanie Capps.

Family Home, Sonoraville, Gordon County, Georgia

Here's to my maternal Great Great Grandmother, Elizabeth Francis "Fannie" Spencer Smith, a devoted wife and mother, who raised her family and supported her husband, during very trying times in American history. Seen above seated in the rocking chair, surrounded by those she loved and those who loved her. From left to right are my Great Great Uncle James Arthur Smith, his daughter Lois and wife Dora Smith, my Great Great Aunt Ethel Smith (guitar in hand), Great Great Grandmother Elizabeth Frances "Fannie" Barella Spencer Smith, my Great Grandfather Robert Warren Smith, his wife my Great Grandmother Rhue Zelma Celeste Jane Vining Smith, standing just to the right of the blanket is my Grandfather James Ralph Smith, and seated on the blanket is his younger brother, my Great Uncle Robert Lynn Smith.

The picture to the right is of our Great Great Grandmother Francis Elizabeth Barilla Spencer Smith and her Grandchildren. Standing in the back row, from left to right are, Polly and Jeannette; sitting in the middle row are, Lois, Ralph (our Grandfather), Max, and Mildred. In the very front row are, Lynn and Rob (Lois and Ralph were born in 1904, Lynn was born in 1905, Rob was born in 1907, Jeannette was born in 1912, Mildred was born born in 1914) The picture to the right is contributed by Melanie Capps.
Fannie Smith and Grandchildren

Here's to my Great Grandfather, Robert Warren Smith and his bride,Rhue Zelma Celeste Jane Vining Smith, lovingly known as "Nanaw" by her grandchildren and great grandchildren,alike. I was not fortunate enough to know my Great Grandfather, he passed before my birth. However, I remember Nanaw very well and though at a very advanced age, she was spry and quick at wit. Always kind and gentle to all of us great grandchildren. A memory I will always cherish and a story I will always tell. I regret we did not have more time together, to share the family history and to learn from her wisdom.

Robert Warren Smith and his Bride
Mr. & Mrs. Robert Smith
The picture to the right is of our Great Grandfather Robert Warren Smith and our Great Grandmother Rhu Zelma Celeste Jane Vining Smith. This picture was taken in Virginia not long before Great Granddaddy passed away.
Robert Warren and Rhu Zelma Celeste Jane Vining Smith
Photo courtesy of Doris Smith Strickland Carpenter
James R. Smith, Sr.
James R. Smith, Sr.
Jun 18, 1904 to Jul 4, 1989
James R. Smith, Sr. Grandson of a Civil War soldier, of whom he was immensely proud. He was a husband, father, Grandfather, Great Grandfather, a musician, a printer, and a fireman...most of all, he was my Hero. He was always kind and gentle and taught us all that family is most important and taking care of one another is what being a family is about. He taught me history, life and pride in who we are. I will always remember him and love him for all the good times. Thanks GrandDaddy, I hope we make you proud!

Seen here at the age of 65, upon his retirement from the Norfolk City Fire Department as Chief Inspector, in 1969.


Granddaddy and his Nine Children
The picture above is of our Grandfather James R. Smith, Sr., surrounded by his nine children on his 85th Birthday in 1989. Seated in front (from left to right) Linda Smith Upton and Doris Smith Strickland Carpenter; Kneeling to the right of center: Alice Smith Pursely Vavadelis; Back row from left to right: Howard Gillette (stepson), Becky Jo Smith Sykes, James R. Smith, Jr., Elizabeth Gillette Bunch (stepdaughter), Robert Nimmo Smith and R. William Smith
Elizabeth Agnes Smith,wife, mother, Grandmother and Greatgrandmother. I knew her for only a short time, as she passed away in April of 1960, when I was only seven, but I remember her as a kind, loving, wonderfully warm Grandmother. She will always be remembered by all that knew her, and will always be missed. We love you, Grandma.

Seen here, when she was just seventeen years old, in 1917.


Elizabeth Smith
Elizabeth Agnes Smith
Jul 15, 1900 to April 1, 1960
Great Grandparents William Nimmo Ghiselin and Martha Broughton Ghiselin
Great Grandparents William Nimmo Ghiselin and Martha Broughton Ghiselin with their children.
My Grandmother's parents, William Nimmo Ghiselin and Martha Broughton Ghiselin are seen to the left with some of their children. The young girl in the back row, third from the left, is my Grandmother Elizabeth Agnes Ghiselin (Smith)


William Nimmo Ghiselin and his wife, Martha Broughton Ghiselin. These are our Great Grandparents on my Grandmother Elizabeth (Ghiselin) Smith's side of the family. Lest we forget, there are many branches to a family tree.


William Nimmo Ghiselin and Matha Broughton Ghiselin
Great Grandparents William Nimmo Ghiselin and Martha Broughton Ghiselin
Grandma Smith and her Siblings.
Grandma Smith and Siblings
My Grandmother as a little girl. From left to right, Greatuncle William, my Grandmother Elizabeth, Greatuncle Tom, Greataunt Becca, and Greatuncle Buddy


Doris Smith Strickland Carpenter Our Mother, my children's Grandmother and my Grandchildren's Great Grandmother. Through bad times and good she has always been there, supporting, loving, and nurturing myself and my three brothers through life. Mom we love you and will always need you!.


Doris Smith Strickland Carpenter
Doris Smith Strickland Carpenter
October 25, 1933 to November 19, 2012
My Mother as a little girl.
Mom and Siblings
My Mother as a little girl with one of her brothers and three of her sisters. From left to right in the back row: Aunt Alice and Uncle Bobby; from left to right in the front row: Aunt Becky Jo, Aunt Linda, and my Mom, Doris. These are the children of my Grandparents James R. Smith, Sr. and Elizabeth Agnes Smith. Not pictured here are there two younger brothers, James R. Smith Jr. and R. William Smith. Also not pictured are one older brother, Howard Gillette and one older sister, Betty Bunch, my Grandmother's children by her first marriage.


Uncle Howard and Aunt Betty Gillette, children of my Grandmother Elizabeth Agnes Smith, by her first husband, Howard Gillette, Sr.


Howard and Betty Gillette
Uncle Howard Gillette and his younger sister, Betty Gillette (Bunch)
Uncle Howard Gillette,Sr.
Howard Gillette, Sr.
Oct. 29, 1922 to Dec. 14, 1989
(Photo courtesy of Tim Strickland)
My Uncle Howard Gillette, Sr. oldest of my Mother's siblings, was truly a remarkable man. He served his country in WWII as a soldier, I remember the stories he used to tell at the family reunions. My favorite was how his G.I. watch stopped a German bullet, that would have otherwise badly injured him. He could easily keep you spell bound for hours, talking through clenched teeth, cigar always present. He further served his community, retiring after 32 years as deputy clerk and chief court deputy of the Circuit Court of Chesapeake, Va. He was a very respected man, a loving father and the epitome of the Southern Gentleman. We miss you Uncle Howard.


Annie L. Gillette
Annie Leona Gillette
April 19, 1925 to Aug 20, 2008
(Photo courtesy of G. Strickland, Sr.)
Aunt Anne Gillette was the widow to our Uncle Howard Gillette. She was one of the sweetest and kindest Aunts one would ever want. She was a true Southern Lady; Mother of three fine upstanding children; Grandmother to six Grandchildren who she loved very much; and Great Grandmother to ten Great Grandchildren, of whom she was very proud. She was always very kind to us and welcomed us to Christmas dinner on many occasion when we were young. She was strong willed and even stronger in her opinion, but always loving to her family. We will always miss you and love you Aunt Anne.


My Aunt Linda (Smith) Upton, my Mother's youngest sister, was taken too soon after a long and valiant fight against cancer. While loving life, she stands as an example of how to face the inevitable. A strong willed, yet kind hearted and gentle lady, she always showed her dedication and love to her husband Sammy Upton and to her two children Steven and Donna. She will always be missed and will always be lovingly remembered by us all.


Linda Lee (Smith) Upton
Linda (Smith) Upton
Nov. 2, 1937 to Nov. 20, 2008
(Photo courtesy of Gary Strickland)
Aunt Betty (Gillette) and Uncle Andy Bunch
Aunt Betty and Uncle Andy
(Aunt Betty) Dec. 17, 1924 to Nov. 16, 2008
(Uncle Andy) Mar. 20, 1921 to Feb. 2, 1997
(Photo courtesy of Doris Smith Strickland Carpenter)
My Aunt Eliabeth Agnes "Betty" (Gillette) Bunch, oldest of my Mother's sisters, was our favorite Aunt. I know this, because everytime I saw her...she was sure to tell me that she "is my favorite Aunt"! She was so kind, gentle and sweet...I had no other choice but to think of her as my favorite. On 15 July 1947, she married my Uncle Andy, the love of her life. Uncle Andy was a serious, quiet and loving gentleman. A man of few words, but always sure to speak kindly and show his dedication to his family. We miss the two of them terribly and will always remember them with love.


My Uncle W. Richard Sykes, married to my Aunt Becky Jo (Smith) Sykes, was a loving husband, a wonderful father, a hard working electrician who was a valued member of his Union and an avid gun collector. He is greatly missed by us all and will never be forgotten.


Uncle Richard Sykes
William Richard Sykes
June 9, 1929 to Oct 16, 2008
(Photo courtesy of Doris Smith Strickland Carpenter)
Peter G. Vavadelis
Uncle Peter G. Vavadelis
Nov. 29, 1930 to Mar. 6, 2002
(Photo courtesy of Doris Smith Strickland Carpenter)
My Uncle Pete Vavadelis,married to my Aunt Alice (Smith) Pursely Vavadelis, was a loving husband, a loved father and an uncle that was well known to us for his ability to cook fine meals, perform wonderful magic tricks (never could figure out the way he did it) and a life long civilian employee of the U.S. Navy. Taken from us too soon, he is greatly missed and will forever be remembered for his warm smile and entertaining wit.


James R. Smith, Jr.Husband, father, brother, Uncle, worked for many years as a self employed electrical contractor and then a well respected electrical technician with the Naval Air Rework Facility, Naval Air Station, Norfolk Virginia, specifically aboard U.S. Navy aircraft carriers attending to landing signal apparatus for aircraft. Much loved by all who knew him, sadly taken away from us at a very young age. More a brother to me than an Uncle, I will miss him forever more.


James R. Smith, Jr.
James R. Smith, Jr.
June 4, 1943 to May 27, 1995
(Photo courtesy of Doris Smith Strickland Carpenter)
The Smith Boys
The Smith Boys
Photo courtesy of Russell Anthony Smith
Several of the Smith Boys got together to celebrate Great Uncle Lynn Smith's birthday at the Ocean View McDonalds, in Norfolk Virginia. Pictured here is (from left ot right), Uncle Ronald William Smith; Uncle Robert Nimmo Smith; Great Uncle Leonard (Bruz) Smith; in the back is Cousin Russell Anthony Smith; and Uncle James (Jimmy) Ralph Smith; in the front row (from left to right) is cousin Michael Thaddeus Smith; Great Uncle Lynn Smith and cousin William (Doug)Douglas Smith. This picture was taken on Great Uncle Lynn's 85th birthday on 18 August 1990.
Robert Nimmo Smith
Uncle Robert N. Smith
Feb. 4, 1931 to Aug. 13, 2004
(Photo courtesy of Doris Smith Strickland Carpenter)
My Uncle Bobby Smith, a husband, father, Marine, and a member of the Eagles (past President in Virginia Beach, Va.). Uncle Bobby was a warm and genuine man and followed the steps of his grandfather, Robert Warren Smith, in the business of being a Printer. He worked at the Virginia Pilot and Ledger Star and other printing concerns in the Tidewater area. We shared many good times at his home, out about town for dinner and at family functions. Our lives are a little sadder due to his passing.


Uncle Sammy and Aunt Linda;two individuals that were truly in love with one another. Uncle Sammy, a retired Air Force Senior Master Seargent, served 24 years. I remember meeting him at the airport on his return from Viet Nam in 1969. Aunt Linda was so happy and we were all so proud of his service and love for his country. Over their many years of marriage (48 years) there was never a moment that anyone doubted their great love for one another.


Uncle Sammy and Aunt Linda (Smith) Upton
Uncle Sammy and Aunt Linda (Smith) Upton
Married on July 9, 1960
(Photo courtesy of Doris Smith Strickland Carpenter)
Mom and her Brothers and Sisters
Mom and her surviving Brothers and Sisters
The picture to the left, shows from left to right: Aunt Betty, Aunt Alice, Uncle Bobby, Aunt Becky Jo, my Mother (Doris), Aunt Linda and Uncle William. Missing are Uncle Howard and Uncle Jimmy, both deceased.
Randolph W. Strickland, Sr.Husband, father, Grandfather, retired from United States Navy as Master Chief Machinist's Mate, and now Utility Engineering Technician with Abbott Laboratories. I know it is unusual to put ones-self on a dedication page, but I am attempting to put as many generations of my family on this page, as possible.


Randolph W. Strickland, Sr.
Randolph W. Strickland, Sr.
Carla J Strickland
Carla (Ingram) Strickland
Carla J Strickland My Wife, my Life Partner, my Best Friend, the Mother of my children, Grandmother to my Grandchildren, the most unselfish, considerate, compassionate and kindest person I have ever known. Thank you Carla, for the best 36 years of my life as of 2008. I pray for at least 36 more.


The Motely Crew
The Strickland brothers; Gary, Randy (me), Tim and John. Also pictured, Robert Chause (my son-in-law), Randy Jr. (my son)and Russell Smith (my cousin). All together on my 50th Birthday! What a party!
Headstones of George R. Smith and Fannie Smith at Bethlehem Baptist Church in Sonoraville, Gordon County, Georgia
Headstones of George R. Smith and Fannie Smith at Bethlehem Baptist Church in Sonoraville, Gordon County, Georgia
On a recent visit to two of my brothers (Jon and Tim)in Georgia, we went on a field trip and visited the graves of our Great Great Grandparents, George R. and Fannie Smith. As most of this web site is dedicated to them and our other ancestors, I felt it fitting to place these and the following pictures on this page.


Monument to John Thomas Smith, Lemuel Gene Smith and Mary Henrietta Smith, in the cemetery at the Bethlehem Baptist Church in Sonoraville, Gordon County, 
Georgia
Monument to John Thomas Smith, Lemuel Gene Smith
and Mary Henrietta Smith in the cemetery of the
Bethlehem Baptist Church in Sonoraville,
Gordon County, Georgia
George Right Smith and his wife Fannie Spencer Smith, had seven children. Three of these children, John Thomas "Tom" Smith (d. June 15, 1887), Lemuel Gene Smith (d. August 27, 1888), and Mary Henrietta "Etta" Smith (d. September 17, 1888) all passed away with eighteen months of one another and were buried in the cemetery of the Bethlehem Baptist Church in Sonoraville, Gordon County, Georgia. A monument to the three chidren is near the graves of their parents.


This is the headstone of John J. Smith, our Great Great Great Grandfather, buried in the family cemetery near his last house in Cartersville, Bartow County, Georgia


Headstone of John J. Smith, our Great Great Great Grandfather, buried in the family cemetery near his last house in Cartersville, Bartow County, Georgia
Headstone of John J. Smith, our Great Great
Great Grandfather,buried in the family cemetery
near his last house in Cartersville,Bartow County, Georgia
The John J. Smith House
John J. Smith House

This is the house John J. Smith lived in and with two different wives (Nancy Spurlock Smith and Eliza Smith) raised his children. Family legend says he won the land in the Georgia Land Lottery in 1832. It is located on Old Tennessee Road in Cartersville, Bartow County, Georgia. As can be seen in this picture, the front of the house remains much the same as it was during the Civil War. The area under the front porch was blocked in later, most likely to keep animals from getting under the house. The house is now used by a local church, to store food stuffs for a food pantry. To the right of the house, just past a large barn and in a secluded wooded area is the family cemetery where John J. Smith and many of the Smith family ancestry are buried.
Headstone of Thomas J. Spencer, our Great Great Great Grandfather, father of Fannie Spencer Smith, in the cemetery at the Bethlehem Baptist Church in Sonoraville, Gordon County, 
Georgia
Headstone of Thomas J. Spencer in the cemetery of
the Bethlehem Baptist Church in Sonoraville, Gordon County, Georgia
Thomas Spencer was the father of Fannie Spencer Smith, our Great Great Grandmother. Family legend states that members of the Tate family, who were apparently members of the Home Guard during the War of Northern Oppression, called him out one night in 1864, shooting him to death. Here in Sonoraville, Gordon County, Georgia... he lies in peace near others of his family.


This is the headstone of Ruth Lewis Spencer, our Great Great Great Grandmother, Mother of Fannie Spencer Smith, buried near her husband Thomas J. Spencer in the cemetery of the Bethlehem Baptist Church of Sonoraville, Gordon County, Georgia.


Headstone of Ruth Lewis Spencer, our Great Great Great Grandmother, buried near her husband Thomas Spencer in the Bethlehem Baptist Church of Sonoraville, Gordon County, Georgia
Headstone of Ruth Lewis Spencer in the cemetery
of the Bethlehem Baptist Church in Sonoraville,
Gordon County, Georgia


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