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Below is a family biography included in The History of Benton County, Arkansas published by Goodspeed Publishing Company in 1889.  These biographies are valuable for genealogy research in discovering missing ancestors or filling in the details of a family tree. Family biographies often include far more information than can be found in a census record or obituary.  Details will vary with each biography but will often include the date and place of birth, parent names including mothers' maiden name, name of wife including maiden name, her parents' names, name of children (including spouses if married), former places of residence, occupation details, military service, church and social organization affiliations, and more.  There are often ancestry details included that cannot be found in any other type of genealogical record.

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Dr. John Smartt, president of the People’s Bank at Bentonville, and also president of the Bentonville Railroad, is a native of McMinnville, Warren Co., Tenn., born in 1820, and the son of George R, and Ethelia (Randolph) Smartt, George R. Smartt was born in Mecklenburg County, N. C., was of Scotch descent and a farmer by occupation. At the age of eight years he removed with his parents to Warren County, Tenn., and in later years married Miss Randolph. He was a member of the Legislature one term, and died in Warren County, Tenn., in 1856. His wife was a native of Tennessee, and died in 1860. She was the mother of nine children, Dr. John Smartt being the third child. The Doctor was reared and grew to manhood on the farm, and received a good education in the Warren County schools. He remained with his parents until twenty-two years of age, and at the age of twenty-four began the study of medicine, his preceptor being Dr. Alfred Payne. In 1846 and 1847 he attended the Lexington Medical College at Lexington, Ky., and in March of the last named year he commenced his practice at McMinnville, Tenn. One year later he went to Oxford, Calhoun Co., Ala., and resuming his practice, remained there until after the late war. In the fall of 1865 he went to Dallas, Texas, and in 1871 he became a resident of Bentonville, Ark. Dr. Smartt has practiced medicine continuously since he entered the profession, or for the past forty-one years, and has met with unusual success in all his work. In November, 1848, he married Miss Essie C. Pyles, a native of South Carolina, born in 1828, and to them were born nine children, five of whom lived to be grown; Mrs. Susan Terry, Athelia T., Louis P., Alfred P. and Essie C. In the fall of 1882 the Bentonville Railroad was organized, and Dr. Smartt was elected president of the organization, or company, and he has since held the position. In 1884 he was elected president of the Benton County Medical Examining Board, and has since held the position. In June, 1888, the Bentonville Commercial College was organized, and Dr. Smartt was elected president of the same. He has been a life-long Democrat in politics, casting his first vote for James K. Polk, in 1844. He is a stockholder in the Bentonville Evaporator and Canning Factory, and is vice-president of the same. He and wife are members of the Presbyterian Church, in which he has been elder for twenty years.

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This family biography is one of 240 biographies included in The History of Benton County, Arkansas published in 1889.  For the complete description, click here: Benton County, Arkansas History, Genealogy, and Maps

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