The Smith Family of Irish Creek, KS

...hesitate not, if you have health and strength, and money enough to bring you out;
come to the great free country, where you may soon grow rich and independent as a farmer,
with yellow corn waving upon the breasts of the prairies, and cattle grazing upon the hills,
and no master over you but the Great Lord of Heaven and Earth.
                                                Fr. T. A. Butler

The family of John and Mary Smith

The family of John and Mary Smith
1887, Wheaton, Kansas, in Pottawatomie County

The parents are John R. Smith and Mary E. Keating;
their children, standing, Joe, Rose, and Andy;
children, seated, May and Delia.
at the time of this photo, son Johnnie, had recently died at age 2 mos., 8 days.

The family of John and Mary Smith

A later photo of the John and Mary Smith family
1890, in Wheaton, Kansas

With John R. Smith, age 41, and Mary E. Keating, age 35;
are their children, standing, Rose, age 11; Delia, 4; May, 6; and Andy, 9;
children, seated, James, age 1 1/2; and Joe, 15.
Sadly, daughter Delia will die at age 9.

Rose will become Mrs. Sam Bennett, May will become Mrs. Will Pierce, Andy will marry Minnie Bushey,
Joe will marry Lily Goodman, and James will marry Margaret Corrigan.
Yet to be born are sons Frank, 1892, who married Alice Carlin,
Harry, 1895, who'll remain single, and daughter Josie, 1898, who married Emmett Carlin.
The eldest child of this family, Ellen Elizabeth, died in 1874, age 7 mos., 19 days, in East St. Louis, IL.

Click here to read Uncle Harry's reflections
about his family coming to Kansas
and homesteading on Irish Creek.

And meet the wonderul Irish priest,
Fr. Thomas Ambrose Butler,
who has been remembered all these generations,
for encouraging the Smith and Keating families
to take up farming on Irish Creek.

Click here to see some photos
of John and Mary Smith's farm on Irish Creek, as it looks today,
and read the deeds giving John and Mary title to their homestead.
I have also posted Bishop Fink's 1896 Pastoral Letter on Rural Life vs. City Life,
and how sad the day will be when young people will no longer seek to be farmers.

Click here to see some photos
of St. Joseph's Church on Irish Creek
and the head stone of John and Mary Smith,
in St. Joseph's Cemetery, across the road.

John and Mary had 11 children.
What was there for the children to do in Kansas in 1880?
Check out the Children's Page.

See a rare photo of Andy and Minnie Smith's Family

I am interested in collecting family portraits of all of John and Mary's children.

View the Gedcom file on John and Mary's family,
and see all their children and grandchildren.

Check out Mary Smith's family, the Keatings.
Please click here.

I am indebted to Aurelia Keating for preserving the 1887 Smith family photo,
and to her daughter Carolyn Schlegel for copying it and sending it to me.
I owe a further debt of gratitude to Dorothy Smith of Rudd, IA for preserving
the 1890 Smith family photo and for letting me copy it. Their care for these precious photos
has given future generations the joy of gazing at the faces of our ancestors,
a joy we would otherwise have known only in heaven. Thank you so much.

{Smith Family} {Keating Family }{Bushey Family}{Donahy Family}

Please contact: Fr. David Smith, S.J.,
with comments, suggestions, additions.

This page was created on March 3, 2000,
Feast of Saint Katherine Drexel,
and was updated several times,
most recently on March 15, 2010.