Friday, November 29, 2013

Obadiah Smith

Obadiah Smith (1805-1863) = Pioneer farmer and preacher. Soldier in Black Hawk War. Born in Kentucky, he emigrated with his family to Missouri when he was a young man. His wife, Lucinda, born in North Carolina, also emigrated with her parents to Missouri some years previous to their marriage in 1832 and when they arrived in Cedar County, MO in 1837, they had two small children with them -- Ruben (4 yrs) and John (2 yrs), named for Obadiah's brother, John M. Smith. John M. became known in Cedar Creek for his agility and strength. He loved to demonstrate it by lifting two ordinary men at the same time without apparent effort.

Obadiah had very little schooling, but had an interest in reading and understanding the teachings of the Bible. He also had a passion for holy living. Even before he completed his own home [Sec. 3; Twp. 35; R 27], he began promoting the idea of establishing a Baptist church in the area with his neighbors which they did the following summer. Elders Hiram Savage and Elijah Williams and Deacon William Savage organized the new Cedar Creek Baptist church on July 1st, 1838. In August, the small congregation elected Obadiah as moderator for the new church. Later he felt called to preach and preach he did, but didn't receive ordination until September 1841.

Lucinda died shortly after the family settled in Cedar County and Obadiah married her younger sister Elizabeth Hartman. They had six children -- Andrew, Henry, Peter, Campbell, Samuel W. and Catherine (b. 1849).

During the Civil War, he put aside church work and entered politics, being appointed to the State Legislature (1862-63). He was killed with his own weapon, a rifle, while standing next to his wife by deceptive Confederate soldiers who came to visit them. 

More to Read:

1. History of Hickory, Polk, Cedar, Dade and Barton Counties, Missouri. Goodspeed, Chicago, 1889.
2. Historical Sketches of Cedar County Missouri. By Clayton Abbott. Stockton, MO. 1967.
3. Missouri Legislators = Smith, Obadiah, Rep., Cedar, 1862.
4. Findagrave # 2591509

Places to Visit:

1. State Capitol and Museum, 201 W. Capitol Ave, Jefferson City, MO.
2. Hackleman Cemetery, Cedar County, MO.