Submitted by Jan J.
Clarence Smart was the son of James Marion Smart and Nina Belcher. He was born 11 Aug 1890 and died 14 July 1914, hit by a train while working for the L & N RR at Mallory Station close to Franklin, TN. This collection of letters was given to his sister, Lela Smart Johnson, and following her death given to her son, Guilford Martin Johnson. Thanks to his children, Larry, Jim, Patsy, and Jerry for allowing us to post this collection.
Aug. 26, 1912
Mr. Clarence Smart
As I am thinking of you this morning I shall write you a few lines. How ae you by now? I am sleepy. I went to preaching at Walnut Grove yesterday & last night, had a nice time only I was a little disappointed because there is not going to be night services. There will be two sermons in the afternoon, beginning at 1:30 so I won't get to attend regular. How is the meeting progressing at Chestnut Grove? I haven't heard from it yet.
How did you enjoy yourself at the fair Sat.? Fine of course. I intended going Fri. but every thing seemed to go wrong to keep me from going so I went to school instead but had the blues all day.
I saw two of your girls yesterday. They were Esma & Callie & they sure looked good as they always do.
As it is most school time I must close but will do better next time when I hope I shall have more time. I could write an hour if I had time but I must close.
October 7, 1912
Mr. Clarence Smart
My dear Friend,
You do not know how happy I am now that you are a Christian. Something seemed to tell me yesterday afternoon that you would be blest & my prayer would be answered but I didn't hear the good news until you came into the altar last night & O you don't know how glad I was. I knew that you were in earnest by your actions yesterday morning. You cannot imagine how happy I am to think one soul has been saved & I am still praying for my dear school-mates & all those dear mourners.
I am getting on nicely with my school work & so is my teacher. We intended having a Spelling Bee Wed. night but if the meeting doesn't close we will not have it & I had much rather go to preaching than to a Spelling Bee.
Your true friend,
Floy Latimer married John Wilkinson on May 15, 1920 (Sumner County Marriage Index.) She was a prominent teacher in Portland for over 40 years. John Wilkinson was one of the owners of the Wilkinson and Wiseman Funeral home. "Miss Floy" died at age 101.