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Samuel Smith

A frontier character celebrated in the history of Wyoming who has made his home at Laramie for a period of thirty years is the subject of this brief review. Born in 1846, he is a native of bucks County, Pennsylvania a son of Samuel and Mary (Cope) Smith both natives of that state. The father was born in 1818 and followed shoemaking up to the time of his death which occurred in 1865. He was a prominent member of the Methodist Episcopal Church and is buried at Hilltown Bucks County, Pennsylvania. He was a good man industrious, charitable to the poor useful to his fellow men and highly respected. The mother passed away from earth in Bucks County, Pennsylvania in 1854 at the age of thirty-one years and lies buried by the side of her husband. She was the mother of five children, Samuel being the youngest one, Samuel Smith married for his second wife, in 1854 Miss Frances Yost and to them were born two children. She survived her husband eleven years and was buried by his side in Hilltown, Pennsylvania. Mr. Smith grew to man's estate in his native county and received such early education as his limited opportunities permitted in the public schools of that county. At the early age of twelve years he was compelled by circumstances to leave school and to make his own way in the world owing to the unfortunate death of his mother while yet in early life and he secured employment at various occupations in the vicinity of his former home for a number of years. When he had attained to the age of nineteen years the spirit of adventure led him to seek his fortune on the western frontier. Disposing of his property in his native state he went to the city of St. Joseph, Missouri then one of the leading outfitting places of the West for overland travel. Here he provided himself with a mule team and necessary outfit and in company with others stated on the long trip across the plains to the city of Denver, Colorado. The trip occupied thirty-six days and was filled with many incidents of danger and hardship, as the Indians were very bad. Finally arriving safely at Denver he engaged in mining in that vicinity and at Russell Gulch meeting with varying success until 1872 when he disposed of his interests in Colorado and removed his residence to Wyoming where he established his home at Laramie and has been a resident of that place ever since. At different times since his residence in Wyoming he has followed various occupations having been engaged in mining hunting fishing scouting and also employed as guide for distinguished hunting parties from the eastern stated and Europe. He has had an interesting and varied experience on the Frontier and has been the associate and friend of many of the reputable border characters whose record and achievements are familiar to the readers of the pioneer history of the country. He has never sought notoriety but the history of his life and experiences on the plains would make a highly interesting volume and he should be prevailed upon to set them down for the benefit of coming generations. In 1890 at Canton, New Jersey Mr. Smith was united in marriage to Miss Elizabeth Preston a native of England and the daughter of Benjamin and Elizabeth Preston, respected residents of that country. She passed away in 1894 age thirty-fours years. All of their four children James, Edward, Charles and Ernest are deceased. Mr. Smith is one of the peculiar pioneer characters of his adopted state and he enjoys the highest respect of all who knew him.

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