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: The events of my father's life may be chronicled in a few lines, but it would take many pages to tell of the mental and spiritual gifts that made that life notable, and of its influence over a wide circle of known and unknown friends. Still more potent was the impress of his character upon those nearest to him, whose privilege it was to see him day by day and partake of the wit, wisdom, kindliness and humor that made him the most fascinating of companions to his children. He has himself told in this book the main incidents of his career; how his father, Asahel Reid Smith, a sturdy young son of Massachusetts, came South to teach school and married his fourteen-year-old pupil, pretty little Caroline Maguire, whose story as her son has written it, is most interesting and romantic. They were married near Savannah but later moved to Lawrenceville, Gwinnett County, where my father was born on June 15th, 1826, the eldest of ten children. My grandfather became a thriving merchant of Lawrenceville, postmaster as well, and my father has told us many entertaining stories of the days when he used to "ride the mail" and sell ribbons and things to the girls.