H. B. Smoot biography

H. B. SMOOT, cashier of the Colorado National Bank, has achieved success through honorable effort and commendable measures. He has the essential characteristics which always win the victory, being a gentleman of strong purpose, of keen insight and unflagging determination and diligence. His life record illustrates forcibly what may be accomplished when one has the will to dare and to do, and the young man who studies out the successive steps by which Mr. Smoot has progressed will learn of methods that may be profitably followed by all. He comes of old Virginian ancestry and is a son of Joseph H. Smoot, a native of Richmond, Virginia, who removed from the Old Dominion to Mobile, Alabama, and became a prominent lawyer of that city. In 1872 he came to Texas settling in Galveston, where he afterward made his home. He was in the active practice of law up to the time of his death and although his residence in the state covered but a comparatively brief period he had already demonstrated his right to rank with its leading lawyers. His wife, who bore the maiden name of Martha Buckholts, is a native of Mississippi and now makes her home in Colorado, Texas.

Harry B. Smoot, the only surviving member of the father’s family, was born in Mobile, Alabama, March 14, 1856. His education was largely acquired in Crawford’s Commercial School of Galveston, from which institution he was graduated in 1871. There were in his class seven young men, all of whom are now occupying prominent positions in public and business life in Texas. After the completion of his education he went to Bryan, Texas, where he engaged in merchandising as an employe[e] and in 1883 he came to Colorado. The town had recently been founded and he became one of the early business men here. He was elected assistant cashier of the First National Bank and the following year was chosen cashier, which position he filled for ten years. In 1894 he was offered the position of cashier in the Colorado National Bank, in which he has continued to the present time. Soon after he entered upon this position he came into possession of the People’s National Bank, which was eventually consolidated with the Colorado National Bank. The latter now has a capital stock of one hundred thousand dollars with a surplus of like amount and is justly regarded as the strongest bank between Fort Worth and El Paso, covering a stretch of country six hundred miles. The development of the business and the high premium rating of the stock is largely due to the business capacity, enterprise and careful management of Mr. Smoot, who is thoroughly familiar with banking methods and has conducted the interests of the Colorado National on a safe conservative plan that inspires confidence and wins patronage.

Mr. Smoot is also largely interested in every enterprise that has for its object the public good and has been closely identified with the growth and development of this section in many yeas, giving hearty co-operation to all the movements for the welfare of his community. He has been a member of the Baptist church for twenty-five years and for twenty years has affiliated with the Masonic fraternity, belonging to the subordinate lodge at Colorado, the commandery, and Hella Temple of the Mystic Shrine at Dallas.

On the 15th of September, 1880, Mrs. Smoot was married to Miss Anna Figh, a daughter of George M. Figh of Montgomery county, Alabama. They have but one son, Joe H. Smoot, who was born April 19, 1891. Mr. Smoot is a typical American business man, leading a strenuous life and accomplishing every task which he undertakes. In this land were individual merit receives recognition and where genius and talent in business gain a reward unknown in any other country of the world he has made for himself an honorable name and gained a gratifying measure of success.

Source: B. B. Paddock, History and Biographical Record of North and West Texas (Chicago: Lewis Publishing Co., 1906), Vol. II, p. 545.