- Born on June 27, 1831 in Rhode Island
- His family moved to Tattnall County, Georgia in 1832
- Died on October 23, 1927 in Hilliard, FL
Frances Elizabeth Bell
- Born on August 15, 1833
- Died on June 2, 1907
Sheldon and Frances
- Married on December 5, 1853
- Had 13 children
- Buried in Smith Cemetery in Toombs County, GA
- All People
- Fannie & Harrison Clifton (their daughter & son-in-law)
- People and Places in Georgia
- People and Places in Rhode Island
Sheldon Perkins Smith was apparently named for both his parents' first spouses. His mother's first husband was named Thomas Sheldon and his father's first wife was named Sarah Perkins.
Parents & Ancestry Edit
Sheldon's Ancestry Edit
Sheldon's immigrant ancestors include William Arnold, Christopher Smith (from whom he inherited the surname), Edward Smith (no known relation to Christopher), Robert Stanton, and William Carpenter, all of which came from England and settled in Rhode Island.
There are multiple instances of "inbreeding" in Sheldon's tree; for example, William Arnold appears at least six times.
|Simeon Smith||▬||Martha Peck||Jonathan Aborn||▬||Mary Arnold|
|Nicholas Peck Smith||▬||Urania Tourtellot Aborn|
Sheldon's Parents Edit
Sheldon's parents were Captain Nicholas Peck Smith and Urania Tourtellot Aborn.
Nicholas Peck Smith was born on March 11, 1787 in Pawtuxet, Kent County, RI. His parents were Simeon Smith (1746 - 1843) and Martha Peck (1756 - 1833). Nicholas married Sarah Perkins on September 14, 1817, and she died with no known children. He then married Urania Aborn, Sheldon's mother. Sheldon is apparently named for his father's first wife. Nicholas died on September 6, 1867 in English Eddy, Toombs County, GA.
Urania Tourtellot Aborn's father was Captain Jonathan Aborn, who died while on a voyage in Calcutta, India. Her mother was Mary Arnold, a descendant of William Arnold. She was born on July 23, 1798 and died on October 22, 1841.
Frances's Family Edit
Frances was the daughter of Joseph Bell and Elizabeth E. Johnson. Elizabeth was the daughter of Allen E. Johnson.
Children EditSheldon and Frances had 13 children.
Elizabeth Uranie Smith Edit
- Born 1854
- Died 1873
- Her middle name may actually be "Urania", for her father's mother, and misspelled on the stone
- Buried in Smith Cemetery with her parents.
- A Standard History of Georgia and Georgians, 1917: "Elizabeth died in 1871."
Frances Rebecca "Fannie" Smith [Clifton] Edit
- Main page: Harrison Clifton & Fannie Smith
- Born on July 15, 1856
- Died June 13, 1942
- Married Harrison Clifton on April 2, 1874
Dorcas Smith Edit
- Born c. 1857
- Died in February, 1911 in Toombs County, GA
- Married Henry Mann
- A Standard History of Georgia and Georgians, 1917: "Dorcas married Henry Mann and died in Toombs County."
Joseph B. Smith Edit
- Born c. 1860
- A Standard History of Georgia and Georgians, 1917: "Joseph B. is a resident of Kingsland, Georgia."
Sheldon Perkins Smith, Jr. Edit
- Born February, 1861 in Georgia
- Married c. 1889
- Died December 6, 1936 in Florida
- He apparently lived mainly in Florida, but was living in Mississippi during the 1900 Census
- Buried in "Woodlawn"
- Spouse: Liza (or Eliza) Curry
- Martha Smith
- Joseph P. Smith
- Alice B. Smith
- Robert S. Smith
- Thomas Smith
- At least one more child who died before 1900
- 1900 Federal Census - Mississippi. He, his wife, and their children were all born in Georgia, except the youngest was born in Florida--so the family had already been living in Florida at some point. Sheldon and Eliza have been married 11 years. She is the mother of 5 children, 4 of which are living.
- 1910 Federal Census - Florida. Sheldon is widowed and has 5 children. The youngest, Thomas, is 11 years old, but he was not listed on the census 10 years ago.
- A Standard History of Georgia and Georgians, 1917: "Sheldon P. lives in Geneva, Florida."
- Maybe him: 1920 Census
- 1935 Florida Census - Florida. Apparently living alone.
- Florida Deaths - currently the only source for his precise birthday; however, it gives the year as 1860 instead of 1861 like other sources.
- North Carolina Deaths - record of his son Joseph's death, 1979. This is currently the only source for the name Liza Curry.
- Find-a-Grave not yet found.
Nicholas Smith Edit
- Born 1862
- Died 1887
- Probably named for his father's father
- A Standard History of Georgia and Georgians, 1917: "Nicholas was accidentally killed by the Southern Railway at Baxley, Georgia."
Mary Anna Smith [McMillan] Edit
- Born c. 1864.
- A Standard History of Georgia and Georgians, 1917: "Mary...married Dan McMillan died in Montgomery County, Georgia."
Martha Octavia Smith Edit
- Born 1865
- Died 1881
- Buried in Smith Cemetery with her parents.
- A Standard History of Georgia and Georgians, 1917: "Octavia died in Tattnall County."
Robert A. Smith Edit
- Born on December 1, 1866
- Died October 6, 1918
- Married Eugenia Harden
- Buried in Smith Cemetery with his wife and his parents
- A Standard History of Georgia and Georgians, 1917: "Robert is now state representative from Toombs County and a farmer in that locality."
- Might have been named for his father's brother, Robert A. Smith (1840-1862)
Allen J. Smith Edit
- Born c. 1869
- His middle name may have been Johnson, because his mother's grandmother was named Allen E. Johnson.
- A Standard History of Georgia and Georgians, 1917: "Allen is an engineer for the Georgia Southern Railway at Valdosta."
- Find-a-Grave - probably him, but not certain
Daisy Bell Smith [Pearson] Edit
- Born on March 11, 1871
- Died on May 5, 1958
- Married John Ash Pearson
- She was his second wife
- They had two sons together, but both died as infants
- Daisy raised several step-children
- Buried in Savannah
- 1910 Census - with her husband and 6 children.
- A Standard History of Georgia and Georgians, 1917: "Daisy is the wife of J. A. Pearson, who alternates in residence between Savannah and Tattnall County."
- Find-a-Grave: "Daisy Bell Smith was the daughter of the Honorable Sheldon Perkins Smith of Toombs County. She married John Ash Pearson, following the death of his first wife. Although the two children born to them died in their infancy, she was lovingly known by her step-children and grandchildren as 'Mama Daisy'."
Simeon Smith Edit
- Born in 1873
- Died in 1875
- Buried in Smith Cemetery with his parents
- A Standard History of Georgia and Georgians, 1917: "Simeon died in infancy."
Louise Bell Smith Edit
- Born c. 1876
- Probably never married
- After her mother died and all her siblings moved out, she and her father Sheldon lived together and ran a boarding house
- A Standard History of Georgia and Georgians, 1917: "Louise lives at home with her father in Lyons."
- 1920 Federal Census - she is the head of the household. Sheldon lives with her, as well as several boarders.
- Find-a-Grave - probably her, but not certain
|June 27||1831||Sheldon is born in Rhode Island|
|1832||Sheldon's family moves from Rhode Island to Tattnall County, GA|
|August 15||1833||Frances is born (in Georgia?)|
|1840||Census: not yet found|
|1841||Sheldon's mother dies|
|1850||US Federal Census
|December 5||1853||Sheldon and Frances marry|
|c. 1855||daughter Elizabeth is born|
|July 15||1856||daughter Fannie is born|
|c. 1857||daughter Dorcas is born|
|c. 1860||son Joseph is born|
|1860||US Federal Census
|c. 1861||Sheldon is elected Justice of the Peace|
|c. 1861||son Sheldon, Jr. is born|
|1862||son Nicholas is born|
|c. 1864||daughter Mary Anna is born|
|1865||daughter Martha Octavia is born|
|December 1||1866||son Robert is born|
|1867||Sheldon's father Nicholas dies|
|c. 1869||son Allen is born|
|1870||US Federal Census
|March 11||1871||daughter Daisy Bell is born|
|1873||son Simeon is born|
|1875||son Simeon dies|
|c. 1876||daughter Louisa Bell is born|
|1880||US Federal Census
|1881||daughter Martha dies|
|1887||son Nicholas dies|
|1890||US Federal Census
|1900||US Federal Census
|June 2||1907||Frances dies|
|1910||US Federal Census
|February||1911||daughter Dorcas [Mann] dies|
|October 6||1918||son Robert dies|
|1920||US Federal Census
|October 23||1927||Sheldon dies in Florida|
Documents & Articles Edit
1840 US Federal Census Edit
- Not yet found for sure.
- This census did not ask about each member of the household, only the head, and simply recorded number of people in each age and gender bracket.
1850 US Federal Census Edit
- Main pages: USFC 1850 Nicholas Smith, USFC 1850 Joseph Bell
- Sheldon is living with his father, Nicholas Smith, and several of his siblings. His mother had died in 1941.
- Meanwhile, Frances is living with her parents and siblings. The Sharpe family lives next door (that is, Harrison Clifton's mother Susan's parents & siblings--though she is already married by this point and does not live with them).
1850 Slave Schedule Edit
- Nicholas Smith owns 11 slaves: 2 men, 3 women, and 6 children under the age of 10. Only the age is recorded for each slave; no names.
- John Pearson is on the same page. He may be related to John Ash Pearson, who married Sheldon's daughter Daisy.
1860 US Federal Census Edit
- Sheldon and Frances have four children, ages 5, 4, 3, and 0.
- Sheldon's father Nicholas lives next door, with a couple of Sheldon's siblings.
- Dorcas McRae, sister of Sheldon and widow of Alexander McRae, lives next door to Nicholas with several children.
1860 Slave Schedule Edit
- Sheldon P. Smith, Nicholas Smith, William Clifton, Henry R. Sharpe, Rebecca Sharpe are listed in succession.
- Others in the subdivsion include Alexander Stripling, Laurence Pearson, John Pearson, John Rambo, Thomas E. Clifton, and Joseph J. Bell.
1870 US Federal Census Edit
- Main page: USFC 1870 Sheldon Smith
- Sheldon and Frances have 10 children living at home, with ages ranging from 0 to 15.
- Christian Frank, a 20-year-old man from Bavaria, is also part of the household. His occupation is Day Laborer so he was apparently a hired hand.
- Dorcas McRae is still living in the neighborhood with some children, and several Sharpes also live nearby.
- If the order in which the families are listed on the page census is an indication of the neighborhood layout, then the Smiths live next to several black families. It is possible that these are their now-free slaves and that they are still employed on the planation.
1880 US Federal Census Edit
- Sheldon and Frances have 9 children living at home, with ages ranging from 4 to 21.
- Harrison and Fannie Clifton and their children live next door.
1890 US Federal Census - not found Edit
- Almost the entire 1890 census was lost in a fire, most likely including this record.
1900 US Federal Census Edit
- Sheldon and Frances have only two children left, Daisy and Bell.
1910 US Federal Census Edit
- Not yet found.
1920 US Federal Census Edit
- Sheldon's last census, as he died in 1927. His daughter, Miss Bell Smith, is the head of the household. There are a number of boarders.
USGW Archives: Tattnall Biographies Edit
SMITH, Sheldon P., retired merchant and fanner, Perry's Mills, Tattnall Co., Ga., son of Nicholas and Urania T. (Aborn) Smith, was born in Rhode Island June 27,1831. The family were among the early settlers of Rhode Island. Mr. Smith's father was born March 11,1787, and his mother July 23,1798. When Mr. Smith was about a year old (1832) his parents migrated to Georgia and settled in Tattnall county, where his father engaged in merchandising. They had eight children, of whom Mr. Smith was the fourth, five of whom are now living. Mr. Smith was given the best education the schools of the county afforded, and then was sent to Hinesville (Liberty county, Ga) high school, at that time in charge of Prof. Bradwell, father of Hon. S. D. Bradwell, the late able state school commissioner. He succeeded his father in his mercantile business, and has also been engaged in farming. About 1861 he was elected justice of the peace and notary public in the district since. Just after the war he was appointed postmaster at Perry's Mills, and has held the office from that time until now. He was not in active service during the war, but he represented Tattnall county (1863-65) in the general assembly. He was married Dec. 5, 1853, in Tattnall county, to Miss Frances Bell, born Aug. 15, 1833, daughter of Joseph J. and Elizabeth (Johnson) Bell, of Tattnall county. To them thirteen children have been born, eight of whom are now living. Mr. Smith is spending his declining years at his plantation home in the southwestern part of Tattnall county, where he has lived since 1832.
A Standard History of Georgia and Georgians Edit
Excerpt from Volume 5. Written by Lucian Lamar Knight, 1917.
When someone speaks of the grand old man of Lyons and Toombs County it is only the stranger in that community who has to be informed that reference is made to the venerable judge of the Probate Court, Sheldon Perkins Smith. Now nearly eighty-five years of age, practically his entire life has been one of unselfish service and devotion to his fellow men and his home community. It is common report in Toombs County that Judge Smith, as a result of his impulsive and broad-minded generosity, has given away a fortune. In fact he has apparently found his chief pleasure in helping those that needed help, regardless of politics, religion or creed. It would be difficult to conceive a higher degree of esteem than that paid by his fellow citizens to this fine old citizen of Lyons.
Born in the State of Rhode Island June 27, 1831, Judge Smith is a son of Nicholas Peek and Urania (Turtelott) Smith. America has been the home of this branch of the Smith family for about two centuries. The immigrant ancestor was Christopher Smith, who came from England and settled in Rhode Island, and his oldest son was Benjamin. The line of descent thenceforward is traced through Stephen, Simeon, Nicholas and finally Judge Smith. On the maternal side the Turtelott family were French Huguenots. Judge Smith's grandmother Dorcas Turtelott married Capt. Jonathan Aborn, who was master of a sailing vessel, and he died while on a voyage at Calcutta, India, in June, 1820. The family was established in Georgia by Nicholas Peck Smith, who in 1824 came to Tattnall County and established a mercantile enterprise. In 1832 he sent North for his family, and they made their home on the Altamaha River in Tattnall County, where he continued his career as a successful merchant and planter until his death in 1867 at the age of eighty years. His wife passed away in 1841. There was a large family of children, including the following: Dorcas, who died in Toombs County in February, 1911; Daniel, who died in Plainfield, New York; Urania, who married Farquhar McRae, and she died at Mount Vernon; Sheldon Perkins, next in age; Nicholas P., who died of yellow fever at Savannah in 1876; Mary A., who first married Dr. Lucien Tucker, and is now the widow of Dr. James Harrison and resides in Washington, D. C.; Elizabeth died in Liberty County, Georgia, in 1858; Robert A. died at Charleston, South Carolina, in 1863 from typhoid fever while in the Confederate army. The daughter’s, were all educated in the Ladies' Seminary at Warren, Rhode Island.
Judge Smith finished his education under a private tutor, Col. J. S. Bradwell, at Hinesville, Georgia. For a number of years he was with his father in the store, until the latter's death, and then employed his resources in merchandising and planting in Tattnall County. The most prominent feature of his career, however, has not been his business success, but his official service. During the Civil war Governor Joseph E. Brown, the war governor of Georgia, appointed him justice of the peace for Tattnall, later Toombs County, and that office he filled with admirable ability and with an administration of justice which was firm but kindly, sympathetic and interested, for fully half a century, from 1863 until 1913. In 1913 Judge Smith was elected Judge of Probate or Ordinary for Toombs County, and in that dignified and useful office it is likely that he will spend his last days. Judge Smith has always been an admirer of the principles of Masonry, though he has never joined the order himself.
On December 5, 1853, in Tattnall County he married Miss Frances Bell, who was born in Tattnall County, a daughter of Joseph and Elizabeth E. (Johnson) Bell. Her mother was the daughter of Allen E. Johnson. After more than half a century of married companionship Mrs. Smith passed away in June, 1908. Thirteen children were born to her, and a number of them are still living and filling dignified and useful positions in the world. Elizabeth died in 1871; Frances E. is the wife of Harrison Clifton, of Toombs County; Dorcas married Henry Mann and died in Toombs County; Joseph B. is a resident of Kingsland, Georgia; Sheldon P. lives in Geneva, Florida; Nicholas was accidentally killed by the Southern Railway at Baxley, Georgia; Mary, who married Dan McMillan died in Montgomery County, Georgia; Octavia died in Tattnall County; Robert is now state representative from Toombs County and a farmer in that locality; Allen is an engineer for the Georgia Southern Railway at Valdosta; Daisy is the wife of J. A. Pearson, who alternates in residence between Savannah and Tattnall County; Simeon died in infancy; Louise lives at home with her father in Lyons.
Prior to the war both Judge Smith and his father owned from forty to fifty slaves and conducted one of the largest plantations in Tattnall County. However, slavery was not an institution which Judge Smith favored, and he literally fought the secession movement in Georgia, and for that reason aroused much ill feeling and prejudice against him. The unpopularity of that time has long since passed away, and the views which he advocated almost alone have long since been accepted by the great majority of right thinking people.
Newspaper Mentions Edit
Savannah Republican - Steam Engine Ad Edit
- July 19, 1863
- Page 2
- No evidence of another "Sheldon P. Smith" discovered in Tattnall yet so this is probably the correct Sheldon.
For Sale, One Steam Engine, 20-horse power, with flued boiler 34 feet long, 3 feet diameter, Also, one Harrison's Superior Portable Patent Grist Mill. Also, Shatting and Pulleys sufficient to drive saw and grist mill. Apply to SHELDON P. SMITH, Perry's Mills, Ga.