Little is known about the origin of
the Smith/Smullen ancestors. In fact Popie (Stanley B. Jr.) talked to the
arch-bishop and they believe the name originated in Ireland. However Nana
Smullen likes to believe it is all English.
Cornelius Smith (1787-1867) and Elizabeth L. Walters (1790-1861)
America for years had fattened on trade with the Britain of George III and
France of Napoleon, locked in a life-and-death struggle. In 1806 the feast was
over. The belligerents blockaded each other's ports and seized our ships. The
Royal Navy, hard put to man Britain's first line of defense, stopped U.S.
merchants at sea, searched them for deserters, and impressed crew members. England's frigates even patrolled off New York and Boston.
When in June of 1807 the new U.S.
frigate Chesapeake, guns still unmounted, put to sea from Norfolk,
Virginia, she was immediately hailed by a British warship - four deserters might
be aboard; kindly muster your crew. The Americans politely refused. Where upon
the British opened fire, boarded, and dragged off four men. Three claimed to be
U.S. citizens who had previously been impressed into the Royal Navy." The
south and west insisted on war; meanwhile the conservative east wanted no part
of it. On June 18, 1812, President Madison signed a declaration of war against
Great Britain, the document of a bitterly divided congress. The nation, unready
for war, found itself in a war insisted on by the south and west in defense of
the North and East, which didn't want to be defended.
Smith was born in 1787 somewhere in Holland. Sometime before or after the
War of 1812 he immigrated from Holland to Philadelphia or Montgomery County in
Pennsylvania. Nothing is known as
to why he came and what he did when he got here. Nothing is known as to what his
involvement was with the War of 1812. However, Cornelius Smith was
captured during the war and held prisoner in Dartmoore Prison.
is a rocky plateau covering about 350 square miles in south Devonshire, England.
Dartmoore Prison, scene of the Dartmoore Massacre, is at Prince Town. In the
massacre, the British killed 7 and wounded 50 American prisoners of the War of
1812 as they tried to escape. One of Cornelius' heirlooms is a large print
showing a black and white sketch of the Dartmoore Prison. [I believe your
father, S.B.Smullen III has the print].
Smith married Elizabeth L. Walters (1790-1861), of Philadelphia
on 13 October 1816. Two
photographs of both Cornelius and Elizabeth were obtained form "Aunt
Marian". Cornelius appears to be a slender, under nourished, chap with big
hands. While Elizabeth seems rather attractive in her younger days. The
photograph of Cornelius in his elder years seems no different than when his was
young. While Elizabeth's photographs indicated she did not age well. The
photographs of the elder Cornelius and Elizabeth Smith were
photographed by T.H. Newcommer, 508 N. 2nd Street, Philadelphia.
Obviously the couple lived in or near center Philadelphia.
after they were married, Elizabeth gave birth to twin girls, Catherine and
Maria, on 22 July 1817. Sadly to say they died one month later. This did not
discourage them; they proceeded to have seven other children during the years of
1818 and 1833.
John H. Smith,
Mary Ann Smith ,
Elizabeth Margaretta Smith,
Cornelia Franks Smith,
William Skimmer Smith,
James Herbert Dexter Smith, and
Benjamin Franklin Smith
Elizabeth was forty-three years old when she gave birth to Benjamin Franklin Smith; Cornelius was nine-nine. The Smith family now consisted seven children, five boys and two girls, ranging from a fifteen year old boy to a baby boy. Mary Ann and Elizabeth were eleven and twelve years old and must have been somewhat of a help. Cornelia Franks Smith was only eight years old, while her oldest brother was fifteen. Remember, Elizabeth was twenty-six years old when she married.
the age of nineteen, Cornelia Franks Smith married William Smullen on 28 January
1844. [We really don't know where William came from, but we assume he lived in
Philadelphia.] The photographs of William Smullen and Cornelia Smith, obtained
from "Aunt Marion" were probably taken at the time of their marriage.
William appears to be a dapper twenty-three year old; while Cornelia appears as
an innocent nineteen year old. The other photograph of Cornelia, taken by
Draper, Photographic Portraits, 1313&1315 Columbia Avenue, Philadelphia,
PA., pictures her as a stern but sensitive, middle-aged woman. Cornelia and
William had six children. Their children were:
Elizabeth Smith Smullen, died 1914
Mary Lilly Smullen, died 1889
Cornelius Smith Smullen, died 1925
Smith Smullen, died 1915
James Herbert Dexter Smullen, died 1914, and his twin
Frank Joshua Woolston Smullen, died 1901.
of all the Smith/Smullen children were obtained from "Aunt Marian".
The photographs show the children as little miniatures of their parents... they
look so old as children! The twins', James and Frank, photograph at a young age
appear to be the same picture. However the photograph showing them at about 5-8
years of age seem to be different children. Pictures of William Smith Smullen
and his children depict him as an extremely disdiquished gentleman.
the twins were more than William could bear. William died in 1860. Cornelia, at
the age of 49, remarried to Henry Lutz in 1864.
She gave birth to Henry's child, Henry C. S. Lutz, in 1865. [lets guess
that the C.S. stood for Cornelius Smith]
double wedding must have been held! James
and Frank both married Edward and Louisa Wills' daughters. on 6 April 1879,
Frank Joshua Woolston Smullen married Susan Wills and James Herbert Dexter
Smullen married Sara Ann Wills. Sara and Susan Wills were the daughters of Edward James Wills and Lousia Welma Johnston VanStone, both
from England. Photographs show Sara
and Susan as rather pleasant and attractive young ladies for their time... but
look out for the mother-in-law, Lousia Welmer Johnston VanStone. [Who could be
pleasant with a name like that!] The photographs were all taken by Philadelphian
photographer, which indicated the families lived in Philadelphia, PA.
James Herbert Dexter Smullen (1856-1914)
Herbert Dexter Smullen apparently remained in Philadelphia while he twin brother,
Frank Joshua Woolston Smullen, went west. It is said that Frank
rode shot-gun on the stage-coach west. However their are photographs of his
children, Bernice Smullen born 1884 and Roy W. Smullen born 1886, which were
taken by a Philadelphia photographer. Maybe he didn't ride west until after
1886. There are no photographs of
Frank; however there are several of James taken as a young man through his
elderly years. Likewise there are photographs and pictures of his wife, Sarah
Wills Smullen, from her years as a mother until
her "golden" years. James and Sara had four children:
Edward James H. Smullen - Philadelphia; married Constance Gertrude
Bastian, of Delaware County PA.
1882 Stanley Bartlett Smullen - Philadelphia; married Mabel
Trist Kugler and settled in Philadelphia PA.
Clinton Wills Smullen - Iona City, California; married Clara Willels,
Haddonfield NJ and settled in Norwood, Delaware County PA.
Marion Cornelia Wills Smullen - Philadelphia; unmarried but was a
"super" aunt to all nieces, nephews, and their spouses and
children. Aunt Marion lived in Germantown, Philadelphia., where we visited her