Biography of Baley Smith

BALEY SMITH. One of the early pioneers of Reynolds County, Missouri, owes his nativity to Tennessee, his birth occurring in Scott County on November 10, 1841.

His parents, John and Nancy (Cotton) Smith, were both born in that county. His grandfather, Isaac Smith, died in that State. John Smith and his brother, Barton, came to Reynolds County at an early date, about 1844, and for one year followed farming on Webb’s Creek. After that John came to Kelley’s Creek and bought the land where his son, Isaac Smith, is now living. He opened up this farm and by industry and perseverance became the owner of a good farm. He made the trip from Tennessee with ox team and came with quite a company of emigrants, the Cottons, Chitwoods and others, all of whom settled in this county. Part of the time Mr. Smith sold goods, and he was also a large dealer in stock, continuing the business until his death in 1868. Politically he was a Democrat, but he took no part in the Civil War. He was a member of the Methodist Episcopal Church, and one of the most prominent men in the county. His wife was a daughter of Aaron Cotton, a pioneer and well-known man of this county. She was born in Tennessee, and was there married to Mr. Smith, whom she accompanied to Missouri in 1844. Her death occurred in this county in 1882. Ten children were the fruits of this union, six sons and four daughters, as follows: Baley, subject; Elvira, now deceased, was the wife of A. Barnes; Daniel C., a farmer of Reynolds County; Isaac, a farmer in Kelley Valley; Calvin E., a farmer in Kelley Valley; Frankley, a farmer in Texas; Veetile, who died when thirty years of age, was a man of family; Matilda J. died when small; Nancy A., wife of Edward Wilkins of Carter County, and one young. The mother was a member of the Methodist Episcopal Church.

As our subject was but three years of age when brought by his parents to Missouri, all his recollections are of this State. He attended the schools of Kelley Valley, and was taught the duties of farm life at an early age. In 1862 he started out to struggle with the stern realities of life for himself, and his first move was to enlist in the Confederate Army, Company C. He served three years under Marmaduke, and was in a number of battles and skirmishes. He was taken prisoner and held three months at Pilot Knob. After the war he returned to this valley and began his career as a farmer. In 1865 he married Miss Juline L. Reed, a native of Shannon County, Missouri, and the daughter of Dr. Thomas and Mary (Chilton) Reed, who moved to Shannon County at an early day. There Dr. Reed died in 1861 and his wife soon after. Almost immediately after marriage our subject moved to the valley where he now lives and began farming, which occupation he has continued since. He has a tract of 200 acres, and as a farmer and stockman has met with good success. In politics he is a Democrat, and he and wife hold membership in the Methodist Episcopal Church. At one time Mr. Smith was justice of the peace in Logan township. Three children have been born to his marriage: Simri, a young man studying law; Malinda J., wife of J. Wood, a farmer; and Mary, who died when five years of age.


A Reminiscent History of the Ozark Region: comprising a condensed general history, a brief descriptive history of each county, and numerous biographical sketches of prominent citizens of such counties. Chicago: Goodspeed Brothers Publishers. 1894.

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