BENJAMIN FRANKLIN SMOOT, a prominent and efficient citizen of Simpson Township Johnson County, was born in Johnson County, Ill., December 30, 1848. His father, Reed Smoot, was born in Owen County, Ky., in 1812, and his mother, Eliza Thomas, in Sumner County, Tenn., in 1819. His father came to Illinois in an early day, and took up Government land in Johnson County, where he resided until his death. He was a farmer and stock-raiser and died in 1878.
B. F. Smoot remained at home until he was twenty-five years of age, receiving his education in the Johnson County Schools. He was married at the age last mentioned, his twenty-fifth year, November 20, 1873, to Elizabeth Amanda Barley, who was born in Hardin County, and is a daughter of Samuel W. and Jane Barley, the former of whom was born in Indiana, and the latter in Kentucky. Mr. Smoot has one hundred and seventeen acres of land on sections 7 and 8, Simpson Township, of which he has cleared about forty-five acres and erected the buildings thereon. At one time in his life our subject owned one hundred and twenty-four acres of land. He has three children, viz: Thomas R., James A. and Eliza L. He and his wife are members of the Missionary Baptist Church, and he always votes the Republican ticket.
Mr. Smoot has conducted his business in an intelligent manner; the work of improvement is constantly going on upon his farm, and the value of the place is steadily increasing. He has a property of which any man may well be proud, and his energy and thrift indicate strongly that he will continue to add to the value of the farm, either by further enlargement or the improvement of what he has.
Extracted from Biographical Review of Johnson, Massac, Pope, and Hardin Counties, Illinois, published in 1893, page 277
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