Biography of J. Larry Smith
Kings County, CA Biographies





J. LARRY SMITH.
J. Larry Smith has been identified with journalistic interests in Kings county as editor of the Hanford Morning Journal since 1916. He was born in Austin, now a part of Chicago, Illinois, on the 2d of August, 1877, his parents being Anthony Wayne and Elizabeth Christina (Lyon) Smith. The father, a civil engineer by profession, served with the rank of major in the Union army during the period of strife between the north and the south, and after cessation of hostilities was connected with the department of public works in the city of Chicago. He also engaged in deep foundation work and conceived the idea of sinking caissons to bed rock for the Chicago skyscrapers. The last years of his life were spent in honorable retirement in California and it was in this state that he passed away in February, 1924. He had for a number of years survived his wife, who departed this life on the 6th of November, 1910.

J. Larry Smith obtained his early education in the public schools of Chicago and subsequently pursued a high school course at Oak Park, Illinois. When still but a boy he entered the service of an optical goods manufacturing firm, with which he continued until 1903, representing the concern in Chicago, Illinois, in California and also in Honolulu. He was a young man of twenty four years when he arrived in California on the 12th of September, 1901, and made his way to Hanford. Mr Smith afterward lived in other parts of the state but eventually returned to Hanford and on the 1st of January, 1907, turned his attention to newspaper work in connection with the Hanford Morning Journal, of which he has been editor since 1916. In this capacity he has directed public opinion in no inconsiderable degree, for it is conceded that in the production and conservation of advancement in all the normal lines of human progress there is no factor which has exercised a more potent influence than the press.

In Hanford, California, Mr. Smith was united in marriage to Miss Emma Lee Bowden, a native of Virginia. Their children are four in number, namely: Eloise Constance, Virginia Dare, Beatrice Elizabeth and Laurence Wayne.

In politics Mr. Smith maintains an independent attitude, believing that the qualifications of a candidate are of more importance than his party affiliation. He is a member of the Kiwanis Club and for recreation he turns to clean outdoor sports, being particularly fond of fishing. He is also an enthusiastic baseball fan and for the past three years has served as secretary of the San Joaquin Valley Baseball League. Mr. Smith has a wide acquaintance in Hanford and Kings county, and the sterling worth of his character has translated acquaintanceship into friendship in almost every case.

From:
History of Tulare County, California
By: Kathleen Edwards Small
and
Kings County, California
By: J. Larry Smith
The S. J. Clarke Publishing Company
Chicago 1926


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