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Ethel Alice Smith, wife to Aspah and mother of their six children, Ethel Bertie, Amanda Bell, Jack, Rube, Lucile and Louise, was born in 1876. She was the daughter of John Pope Smith and Amanda Saphronia Westbrook and the grand-daughter of John Westbrook and Elizabeth Stringer. John Westbrook moved to Cherokee County from Virginia to be an innkeeper. Ethel's ties to Cherokee County dated to the county's founding. Ethel was raised in Buffington, GA, the youngest of four children. She attended Orange Academy at least through 1890. Ethel was married before her 20th birthday, after short courtship with Asaph.


NEXT: Marriage




Learning the Story


Far too often the voices and stories of women in the past are muted or even silent. In our story we focused on Aspah almost as reflex. Why not focus on Ethel. For one thing the her record is in many ways dependent on Aspah's. The story which emerged from the documentary record was very obviously the story of Asaph. But, that may very well be the product of someone else's decision to preserve records that favored the story of Asaph. Students should deliberately and purposively consider Ethel as a companion and a secondary character. This consideration should lead to a reconsideration of how we know about the past and why it is most often the male story that we teach and learn.