Heber Arthur Smith was the second child of four, two boys and two girls, born to Heber Charles and Isabella Ross (Kemp) Smith. He was born December 28, 1885 in St. George, Washington Co., Utah. His mother died when he was six years old after having given birth to his brother Ross.
The only recreation at this time was swimming in the Virgin River and playing baseball, both of which he did very well and enjoyed very much. In his later years he attended many major league baseball games, and also watched many of them on television.
When he was nine years old, his father married Bertha O'Donnell and four years later when he was thirteen the family moved to Lund, Nevada. While growing up here in St. George, he used to go to the field with a neighbor, John Carter, who had a son a year older than Art, and they would work until noon, then John would give them roast corn and melons to eat.
The first summer that they lived in Nevada, they lived in a tent. That fall they bought two houses in Hamilton, tore them down and hauled the used lumber to Lund and his dad built a four-room home from them. They lived here until Arthur was married and then his father built a new home.
He went to school in Lund for only 6 weeks the first year, three months the second year and after that they went for 6 months each year.
He told of how he would go to Sunday School and wear the Sunday shoes and then come home and his father would wear them to Sacrament Meeting.
He worked for fifty cents a day hauling hay and then at 16 years of age he went to work at the Riordans Ranch raking hay and then stayed to ride with the cattle for a year. The next year at 17, he went to work at the Lewis Ranch with the cattle. He also worked the farm for his father for one year to pay for the farm while his father was
away doing carpenter work. He worked for 3 or 4 months at the mine in Kimberly and then returned to run the farm again and also ran one for George E. Burgess.
On Nov. 27, 1907, he and Lillie Jeffery Burgess returned to St. George in a 2 seated white top buggy, a trip which took 5 days, and were married in the St. George Temple. After the marriage, they went to Pine Valley and stayed with Lillie's Aunt Carrie.
Following their marriage, they lived in a two story frame home at Whiteheads in Lund and ran the Whitehead farm for one year. Lillie's family moved to Alpine and they moved into their home and rented their farm. He also took over the stage from Lund to Sunnyside, and when the contract was up in two years he bid on it and had it for another four years. This paid $800 peryear for a 35 mile trip twice a week.
Lillie had 3 cows and a 2 year old steer when they were married and they soon started getting a few head of cattle for themselves. Jay Arthur was born October 20, 1908 and a year later on November 18, 1909 Malin was born. Belva was born two years later on July 25, 1911 and a year from the following Sept. 17, 1912, Irma was born. On October 20, 1915, Vonda was born and four years later on October 29, 1919, Iona was born.
The family remained in Lund until December 22, 1925 when they moved to Alpine, Utah. Arthur and Jay returned to McGill, Nevada in February 1926 to find employment, while Lillie stayed in Alpine with the children as they were attending school there. On June 1, 1926, the family moved to McGill and two days later, June 3, 1926, Kay Burgess was born. Four years later on March 12, 1930, Curtiss Lynn was born, the only child of theirs to be born in a hospital and attended by a doctor (Dr. Bowdle). He was born at the Steptoe Hospital in East Ely, Nevada. Life in McGill was much the same as in any mining town. Many nationalities worked there and each group lived in their own section of the town.
The final move to Alpine was made in June 1930 when they bought the George E. Burgess farm and old adobe home about one mile south of Alpine. Chicken coops were built and Arthur went into the chicken business along with his farming.
In 1934 Jay went to work at the "Mary Ellen Mine" in American Fork canyon and was killed in a cave-in only a week later on July 26, 1934. This was the first real tragedy to come into their lives.
In 1941 Maxine, Jay's ten year old daughter, came to live with them, as her mother had become terminally ill and they reared her.
While in Alpine, Arthur became very active in both church and civic affairs, teaching the MMen class from 1934 until 1937 when he was sustained as a counselor in the Sunday School. He served in this position for about 3 months and then was called to be the Superintendent of the Sunday School, a position that he held for ten years. He was then put in as a counselor in the Stake Sunday School. After two years in the Stake Sunday School, he and his wife were called and set apart as stake missionaries, a calling which they both enjoyed very much. They had served in this position for two years when he was called and set apart as Bishop of the Alpine Ward. After serving for 5½ years as Bishop, they sold their home and farm in Alpine and moved to American Fork on June 10, 1953, as they had built a new home at 396 No. 1st East. Here he was called to be head of the Sr. Aaronic committee and also ward teacher supervisor. In 1960 he was sustained as class leader of the high priests group.
While in Alpine he served as chairman of the water board and citycouncilman. He loved horses and always had a favorite one to ride.
He remained in relatively good health, always responding to the call to help on the stake welfare farm, etc., and only two weeks prior to his death had helped in the project of picking string beans. He died Dec. 19, 1969 in the L.D.S. hospital in Salt Lake City, Utah where he had been taken on Dec. 6 because of a heart problem.
Written and submitted by:
Belva Smith Bateman