John M. Smuin, Up-to-date Grocer, died 9 October 1926

Smuin, John M. b. 1852 ObitOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

My Great Grandpa John M. Smuin died on this day 161 years ago.  He lived in Ogden, then later had a grocery and dry goods store in Rexburg, Idaho.  I don’t know much about him yet, and this photo is the only one I have of him.  He’s seated, with his oldest son, John “Leroy” and his baby, also named LeRoy.  The mother’s name is Edith (Duncan) .  John’s son, Franklin, was my Grandpa, number eight of eleven children.

Smuin, John M. b. 1852 with family

I went through Rexburg, Idaho in 2003  with the family on our way to Yellowstone and we went to the cemetery to find the headstone for John and his wife Harriet Matilda Barker Smuin.  She is the daughter of Mary Ann Pain Holt.  I had a one-page history about John’s life and the write up below about his funeral.  It mentions several speakers, including Arthur Porter.  When I showed it to the white-haired woman docent working that day at the local museum, she told me she was Arthur Porter’s daughter.  She said she knew all the people mentioned here.  I gave her a hug, knowing she had known my Great Grandpa.  It made me feel one step closer to him.

Smuin, John M. b. 1852 Funeral 001

Here is a picture I took of a newspaper article from a scrapbook found in the Rexburg Museum about the history of Rexburg:


In the book, History of Idaho:  A Narrative Account of Its Historical Progress, Its People and Its Principal Interests (published in 1914), Volume 3, p. 1206, I found this paragraph on a page about John’s son, William:

Smuin, John M. History of Idaho p. 1206

I’m happy to know what I know, but I sure wish I new more about John and Harriet.

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3 Responses to John M. Smuin, Up-to-date Grocer, died 9 October 1926

  1. Your grandfather Franklin was born next in line after my grandmother Mable, She is my paternal grandmother.. I also wish I knew more about their family. I know my grandma Mable moved to Croyden and lived with her sister Harriet Barker and her husband Dr. Charles Caulson Rich Pugmire. He was the local Dr. in the area. Croydon is not too far away from Morgan. Mable met her future husband there and they were married. She married Gilbert Francis of Morgan. He was in the banking business. Together they had 4 children. The youngest of which was my father, Grant Francis. I’ve always wanted to know more about Grandma’s family. I have a water color painting by one of her sisters. I inherited in after my dad died. It’s so very beautiful. I’m trying to gather pictures and stories and anything I can find to help me know her family better. Do you mind if we stay in touch and share memories that we have? My email is I’d love to hear from you. I love my grandma so and miss her terribly. Growing up we lived across the street from them and I came from a family of 5 children and I was the oldest and i’d escape over to grandma’s all the time. Sometimes I really wish she were here so I could escape when I’m looking for a place to run and hide 🙂 I look forward in getting to know you better. Your cousin, Sherilynn F. Green

    • Hi Sherilynn!
      Thanks for your comments and information. My computer is still down and all of my Family History work is in that computer. I’m hoping to get it back from the shop by the end of the week. I loved reading about your family members. Where do you live? My email is I’ll be able to respond more completely when I get my computer back. It will be fun to share information!

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