Aug 11

Benjamin Smithson Texas Ranger

Image5Benjamin Franklin Smithson was a Texas pioneer and the first settler of Smithson’s Valley, in Comal County, Texas. He was born in Jefferson County, Ala., March 19, 1825. His father, William Smithson, a native of Virginia, and soldier in the War of 1812-14, came to Texas in 1837 from Alabama with his wife and nine children. William Smithson died in 1844. Benjamin Franklin Smithson moved to Comal County in 1851 and made his homestead, which gives the Smithson Valley its name today.  Ben Smithson was one of the first Texas Rangers and was present at some of the most important events in Texas History.

For example, according to the book “Indian wars and pioneers of Texas,” by John Henry Brown, in 1842 Smithson was a member of Capt. Belting’s Company of Texas rangers when Belting’s Rangers fought in the battle of Salado very close to the Dawson Massacre. Smithson went on to fight in many other skirmishes with both the Mexican Army and Indians. During the Mexican War Ben Smithson was a member of Bell’s Regiment stationed on the Texas frontier. After Texas statehood, Smithson  became the first postmaster of Smithson’s Valley and helped build the first schoolhouse between New Braunfels and Bulverde. Image1

Image2 This 1/2 life-size bronze by Erik Christianson memorializes Benjamin Smithson’s career as a Texas Ranger and his participation in the fight for Independence from Mexico.