James H. (Jim) and Theresa Smith will celebrate their 70th wedding anniversary April 8 with a reception hosted by their children and grandchildren. The event will take place from 2 to 4 p.m. in the fellowship room of New Hope Baptist Church on Highway 175. All relatives and friends are invited to attend.
On April 8, 1936, Jim drove a Model-T Ford to pick up his bride-to-be, Theresa Frailey. They were accompanied by Theresa's mother and sister to the home of her grandmother in Hardy where they were married by W.W. Gibson, a minister.
Most of the trips Jim made from his rural home to Theresa's during their courting days were by walking a path through the woods. For about 55 years, they have lived on property that he crossed on those walks.
The Smiths had two sons and three daughters. Their children include: sons and their wives, Wayne and Norma Smith, and Hubert and Caroline Smith, all of Cedar Hill, Texas; and daughters and their husbands, Nadine and Jon Bussard of Mountain Home, Judy and Stan Whitson of Fairhope, Ala., and Jeanie and Billy Wilson of Caulfield, Mo.
Their children blessed them with 15 grandchildren, who have given them 22 great-grandchildren (with two more great-grandsons expected this spring). Their oldest great-granddaughter and her husband have given them two great-great-grandchildren, which has fulfilled their dream of seeing five generations in their family. The births of the great-grandsons in the spring will bring the number of their direct descendants to 46.
Jim and Theresa have lived in Sharp County most of their lives, except for about six years when Jim farmed in Indiana and a brief stay in California. Jim has farmed, operated a sawmill, logged and worked as a real estate broker. Theresa has always been at Jim's side, supporting his endeavors. She has been a skillful seamstress, making many articles of clothing for her daughters and herself, as well as some beautiful quilts.
They also enjoyed growing vegetables and strawberries, and Theresa grew beautiful flowers. Jim raised, trained and hunted with registered coon dogs.
Their children and grandchildren say they have been blessed to have the example of Jim and Theresa, as they have witnessed them living good, honest, hardworking lives. They have attended New Hope Baptist Church where Jim served as a deacon for many years.
With some health concerns they can no longer get out often, but they enjoy visits from family and friends.