George Joseph Smart (1875 - 1934)
George was born on May 2, 1875 in Beaver Township, Fillmore county, Minnesota, the oldest son of James and Margaret Smart.
|Randy Smart has the original picture.|
Single Days In Texas by Randy
|Randy Smart has the original picture.||
George married Lora Vale Edgar on January 1, 1906 at the courthouse in nearby Arapaho, Oklahoma. He was 30--Lora was 20.Having arrived in Clinton at the same time, the Smarts and Edgars became very close. The only Edgar boy, Jim, was rather large and happy-go-lucky. Whereas, George was small and more reserved--a man of expectations. They grew close over the years--sharing sister stories. In 1905, a proposal from a man with a thriving farm--a man of real estate--a man familiar with the whole family--put to Lora's 65 year old widowed father, was readily accepted. George was finally getting married. Jim, however, never would.--Randy
Married In Oklahoma
Children - George & Lora
Education in Oklahoma and Washington
The children went to school, walking 2 miles or so sometimes. The older children finished the first 8 grades--passing the State Tests and graduating in the spring of 1924. Clara finished the 9th grade and went on to high school in Greenacres, Washington, living with friends. The younger children were kept in school all through the 8th grade, in spite of moving every few years. Ralph, for example, went to 1st grade in Green Acres (1921), 2nd-4th in Deer Park, 5th-7th in Goldendale and graduated in Wenatchee in 1930. Some months he only made it to school six days. --Clara's Saga
After a few years of working on their homesteads, they were well-improved and yielding sizable crops. Yet, neither Lora Vale nor George seemed to embrace farm life. George had a trading nature that seemed to go to his core. He seemed ready to trade everything he had and move on to something else. He couldn't seem to put down roots. He amassed a great deal of equipment but never made much money growing food. Lora was caring for a 6, 4 and 3 year-old in addition to their struggling infant and a two month-old son, Lavern. Lora would loose a baby as Winter 1912 moved in on them.--Randy
One summer day, the entire family was going to the fair except Lora, who wanted to stay home and rest. She was adamant and rebuffed all protests until she got her way. They loaded up the truck and left early and were gone until very late in the day. George insisted Lora tie the cow up to graze all day and she did. When she went to move the cow one time, she couldn't get it to go where she wanted--Lora being a small woman and it was a large cow. While she was trying to move this cow, she somehow got her leg broken pretty badly. She had to lay there all day until the family returned and, by the time they got her to a doctor, the leg wouldn't set straight. She walked very poorly the rest of her life.--Helen Myers, Lavern's first wife).
One of the things I remember is a big hail storm. It came up about 4 in the afternoon, and it got as black as night. It was sometime before it started to hail, stones as large as golf balls. I can remember them piled up against the foot boards around the chicken yard. It was always my and Clifford's job to pick up the box of dry chips for kindling the fires. So this day we had to pick them up by the flashing of lighting. We weren't afraid of the storm. That day Papa had gone to town and had just gotten off the main road into our lane when the storm started and when the hail started he had to stop the team and get under the wagon. One of the horses was hit in the eye and it put his eye out.
And I remember several times when Mama would get her white washing hung up on the line, and a big wind would start blowing and the line would break and all her clothes would o down in that old red dirt. She would cry and cry and of course have to do the wash all over again. I felt so sorry for her and would wish I was big enough to do it for her.
Other dates and places where the family left a trail. Most of the unsupported information is attributable to Clara and Ralph's recollections.
|1897||At the age of 22, George helped moved the family from Northern Texas to Oklahoma where they homestead large farms, working on each other's property.--Randy|
|1900||On June 26, the 1900 Census enumerator found Margaret living with George, Charles, James, Frances, and Grover in Washita, Custer county, Oklahoma. Rosella was living alone between them and Fred/Martha Lebouc.|
|1904 - 06||George does several Land Deals in the area of Clinton, Oklahoma.|
|1908||George sold his original Clinton farm May 1st and moved into Cloudchief with Lora and two small children (Clifford and Clara). George bought and operated a grocery store.|
|1910||On May 21st, the 1910 Census enumerator found George, Lora, Clifford, Clara, and Truest living in Seger Township, Washita county, Oklahoma.|
|1912||They moved to the family farm in Clinton that Grover and Frances inherited when Margaret died at the end of '09. Margaret's Will|
|1914||In 1914, Lora's father, Paschal, and her older brother, Jim Edgar, moved to Colville in the northeastern corner of Washington on the upper Columbia River. They brought 40 acres on Colville Mountain, sixteen miles north of Colville. Three of Paschal's daughters would soon follow.|
George and Lora moved into town (Clinton) in the Fall where the older children began school. After school was out in the Spring or some time that Spring or early Summer Mama and us children went to Collvile Washington to visit Grandpa Edgar and Uncle Jim and stayed the summer.--Clara's Saga
|1916||That winter Papa was in bed with rheumatism. I remember when one of us would touch the bed, he'd cry out in pain.--Clara's Saga|
In the spring of 1917, we all moved to Washington. We stayed for a short time with Aunt Carolyn and Uncle Clay at Colville, Wash. Then we went to Rice, Wash. and stayed with Aunt Willie and Uncle Lloyd. Papa was getting much better and was able to take care of the large vegetable garden Aunt Willie had planted. On June 18, 1917, our little sister, Helen Margerite was borned. (Rice is not longer in existence. When they built the Grand Coulee Dam, that area became a large lake.)--Clara's Saga
|1920||On January 17th, the 1920 Census enumerator found George, Lora, Clifford, Clara, Truest, Lavern and Ralph living in Greenacres, Spokane county, Washington.|
When it was time, the family chipped in to help friends and neighbors "get the fruit in." The money earned working the fields and orchards helped sustain them when they needed it most. Here is George picking fruit with the kids in Anderson's orchard.
|1920s||George went into additional real estate deals. Through his new contacts, he heard of a 160-acre farm at Half Moon Prairie, near Deer Park and the Great Northern Railroad, north of Spokane.--Clara's Saga|
The family moved to Kettle Falls where George got work on a farm and the family moved to Greenacres (a suburb of Spokane today) on the Spokane River. Estle was born here. George worked in a cement plant outside of Spokane. Ralph went to 1st grade in Greenacres.
|1923||George bought a farm and moved the family to Half Moon Prairie in the Spring, where they grew produce to sell in Spokane.--Clara's Saga|
|1924||The older children finished the first 8 grades in Washington--passing the State Tests and graduating in the spring.--Clara's Saga|
|1925||In 1925, George bought a Model T Ford pickup. He traded the wagon and team for mechanized transportation.|
|1926||In the fall, only a few years after buying it, George sold the farm in Half Moon Prairie and moved the family to Centerville, near Goldendale, Washington where Lora's sister Willie and her husband Lloyd Hobbs lived. Clara went to high school there, staying with the Hobbs's.|
|1928||George's Motor Vehicle License shows him living in Ceterville. In the fall, the family moved to Vancouver, Washington. They camped along the Columbia River until they found a house to rent. The children were old enough to help pick fruit.|
|1929||In the summer the family moved to Wenatchee, Chelan county where lots of work was found in the fruit orchards. This is where they would "settle," even thought most of the family would scatter before too long.|
|1930||Ralph graduated in Wenatchee in 1930.|
|1930||The 1930 Census shows George, Lora, Clifford, Clara, Ralph, Helen & Estle living in Grange Precinct, Chelan county, Washington.|
|1940||On April 20th, the 1940s Census enumerator found Lora, a widow, living with Clifford and Levern (farm laborers) in Madera, California.|
George Dies in Washington
In 1936, a couple of years after loosing George, Lora Vale went to Madera, California to visit Cliff for the winter. The next fall she moved there. She lived most of her remaining years in a little one-bedroom rented house with big elm trees on a quiet street in Madera. She loved gladiola and grew a few in her yard there. She always dressed nice, wearing petticoats under pastel dresses. She wore plenty of perfume and powder. She wouldn't come out of her bedroom until she was completely dressed and made up. In her latter years, at a time when Helen lived in Roseville and Ralph in Tracy, Lora was put into the Roseville Convalescent Hospital.--Randy
Lora Vale passed on January 28, 1969 in Rosevile, California. She was 83 and had outlived George by almost 35 years. Neither one ever had much of a relationship with anyone else although Lora Vale did meet and date one man in Madera.
Block 24, Section 313, Grave 1 Belmont Memorial Park, 201 Tielman Ave., Fresno
|Lora's Death Certificate - Obituary - Funeral Card|
These are all l the pictures I have of George and Lora so, if you have some more, please share.
Clara E. (Smart) Dew wrote and typed an excellent 5-page family history: The Saga of George Joseph Smart and Lora Vale Edgar Smart.
A lot of this information was from family records. Among these is an 11-paged typed document Titled "The Smart History Ancestry" which I believe was compiled by my mother from her Smart in-laws as well as her husband, Ralph. There are many errors in it, but it serves as a landmark of what they knew collectively--then.
Ralph Smart contributed much orally (to his son, Randy C. Smart) that has been merged with what else we have here.
Recollections by Randy C. Smart - I knew Lora and visited the Clinton area as well as being guided thru Hardesty by a former-resident cousin, Ronnie Smart...and I've read a lot of history.