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Linden and Margaret Ann Smith have family roots that run deep in the Clover community. Their ancestors on both sides were among the first to settle on Clover soil. As Clover officially marks its 125th anniversary next month, the Smiths, both 74, proudly look back on an ancestry that played a significant role in the founding and growth of Clover.
Editor’s note: This is the first in an occasional series of articles about notable Clover residents and their link to the community in honor of the 125th anniversary of Clover this year.
Linden and Margaret Ann Smith have family roots that run deep in the Clover community. Their ancestors on both sides were among the first to settle on Clover soil.
Linden’s great great great great grandfather was James Smith, who was born in England in 1731 and came to Virginia in 1751. In 1767, he came to York County and settled on 300 acres granted from King George III. In 1774, an additional 400 acres was granted to him.
Linden’s wife, the former Margaret Ann McCall, is a descendant of James McCall, who immigrated from Northern Ireland in 1733. McCall first settled in Pennsylvania, and came to York County around 1770.
“One of his children built a house in what is now downtown Clover in 1776,” Linden Smith said, based on genealogical research by his wife. That son, James Nelson McCall, was a brick mason by trade, who laid brick for many of the original structures in and around Clover, he said.
As Clover officially marks its 125th anniversary next month, the Smiths, both 74, proudly look back on an ancestry that played a significant role in the founding and growth of Clover.
“It gives you a pretty rich heritage, and to see the town of Clover still here and prospering and doing well, we think,” Smith said. “Both of us started right in this area, it’s a nice feeling.”
Margaret Ann McCall Smith even penned a book for a private printing about the family’s history. The book, “Letters from Daisy,” was based on letters between Linden’s grandfather, Myles Linden Smith, and his future wife, Daisy. Myles Linden founded the Bank of Clover in 1906.
The family’s history, he noted, is quite a rich story.
Smith said James Smith, the ancestor who came here from England, was a horseman during the Revolutionary War, when he was about 45 years old. James Smith conveyed the land for Beersheba Presbyterian Church, where he and his wife are buried.
Later generations of the Smith family continued to play a big role in the community. Myles Smith, Linden’s great great grandfather, and his son, Civil War Capt. William Beatty Smith, began subdividing land that the family owned around what is now the town square.
William Beatty Smith — who had two brothers, both of whom also fought in and returned from the Civil War — petitioned the railroad to build a siding and depot on land where railroad cars could be pulled off the main line.
William Beatty also built a depot there at his own expense and handled the railroad freight, Smith said. Around the same time, he built a general store at Main and Kings Mountain streets.
“In 1898, Capt. Beatty Smith was instrumental in starting the Clover Cotton Manufacturing Co., which was the first business in town that started providing a payroll for people,” Smith said.
That business began to draw people from surrounding rural areas to the town for employment, he said. “At the time, of course, all there was was farming,” Smith said. “And of course the mill built housing for the workers, and that was the first industry that was started.”
Smith’s grandfather, Myles Linden Smith, later worked with associates in Massachusetts to establish two more textile mills in Clover, Hawthorn Spinning Mill in 1916 and Hampshire Spinning Co. in 1922.
Myles Linden Smith also had two brothers, who embarked on their own local business ventures, starting the first local movie theater and the first automobile dealership in Clover. “They were involved in most everything that was going on here,” he said.
The family subdivided land on Kings Mountain Street and made provisions for the town’s first church, Clover Presbyterian, in the early 1900s. The wood church was replaced by a brick church in 1923.
Linden Smith said his father, Edward Hardin Smith, initially worked as treasurer of the Bowling Green Spinning Mill, and later went into the insurance business, buying an independent agency.
Linden, who graduated from Erskine College in 1961, also worked in the insurance industry, traveling for a company until his father died in 1967, when Linden took over the family’s Smith Insurance Agency.
Later, he added real estate to the business, which he sold in the 1980s. He now is the owner of Clover Mini Storage on U.S. 321 North. He and Margaret Ann have two daughters, Linden Alana, who lives in Raleigh, N.C., and Rankin Ross, who lives in Palm City, Fla.
Smith said the couple — who were childhood playmates, both 1956 graduates of Clover High School — hope to share more information about Clover’s heritage soon in Margaret Anne’s latest project.
She has been at work on another book about Clover’s founding, called “The Smith Family and the Founding of Clover,” based on her research and papers kept by the family. Smith said that book may be available in a month or two.