Biography of R. G. Smith
St Lawrence County, NY Biographies

Smith, R. G., Russell, was born in Russell, April 1, 1849. His father, John T., was a son of Rollin Smith, a native of Blanford, Mass., born October 24, 1788. December 2, 1817, he married Olive Gibbs. who was horn February 28, 1791, and they had six children, four now living: Mrs. Edmond Clark, of North Russell ; Mrs. Ansil Doolittle, of Russell; Mrs. Samuel Moore, of Russell; and Mrs. Zenas Squires, of Canton. Mr. Smith came to Russell about 1813, and here spent his life, teaching the first school in Russell village. He was quite a conspicuous figure in the early history of this town, having served eight terms as supervisor, and was also justice of the peace. He died in 1866 and his wife in 1881. The father of Rollin was John Smith, who lived and died in Massachusetts. Our subject was born and reared on a farm, and his father dying when he was nine years old, he was in early life thrown on his own resources, and being the oldest son he had much responsibility thrust upon him in caring for the family. He was educated in the common schools, and spent several years in teaching school, beginning at the age of seventeen. He also attended the Canton Academy, and at the age of twenty four took a course in penmanship and telegraphy at Eastman's Business College, graduating in 1873. He next went to northern Wisconsin and taught for some time and in 1874 took a course in the Oshkosh Business College, and taught one year after that, In 1875 he returned to Russell and engaged in farming, but his health failing he organized a select school of sixty pupils in Russell and taught one term. February 29, 1876, he married Elizabeth, daughter of Hugh Miller, of Russell, and they have bad four children: Roy L., John L., Grace, who died aged seven years; and Goldia. In 1877 Mr. Smith, and brothers John C. and Eugene L, engaged in the hardware business in Russell, but our subject soon sold out to John C., and later repurchased the entire stock and has since had a very successful business, carrying all classes of hardware and tinware. For several years he has also dealt in butter tubs, and has handled real estate also. He is a Republican, has served as justice of the peace two terms and is now filling his third term as supervisor. He is a member of Russell Lodge No. 560 F. & A. M.

Our County and it's people
A memorial record of St. Lawrence County, New York
Edited by: Gates Curtis
The Boston History Co., Publishers 1894

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