Monday, May 21, 2012

Oramandal Smith (1842-1915)


  Following yesterday's profile on Pennsylvania native Wooda N. Carr, we journey further north to Maine and Mr. Ormandal Smith. This oddly named figure served in a number of public offices in his native state, including stints as clerk of the House, state representative, state insurance commissioner, state treasurer and Maine Secretary of State. A surprising amount of information on Mr. Smith can be found in the right places online, but one inconsistency that has arisen out of this is the spelling of his first name. Most sources list it as being spelled "Oramandal", while others give more variations, including "Oramandel", "Ormandel" and "Ormandal".
   Smith was born on December 2, 1842 in Aroostook County, Maine, the son of Daniel and Lucy Williams Smith. He received his education in the public school of Masardis, Maine, and after the death of his mother removed with his father to the town of Litchfield. After settling here, Smith began attending the Litchfield Academy and later studied at the Waterville Classical Institute. 
  After completing his education Smith became a principal in the Litchfield and Richmond school systems from 1864-1877. During this time Smith also worked at farming, and in 1870 was elected to his first political office, that of a Representative in the Maine State Legislature. In 1874 he was named as assistant clerk of the Maine State House of Representatives and continued in this post until 1876, when he was elected clerk. Smith's tenure as clerk of the House extended from 1876-78 and again from 1880-85. Earlier in 1875, Smith married Ms. Jennie Smith and it is unknown at this time if any children were born to them.
  During his last term as clerk Smith was named as Maine State Insurance Commissioner, serving in this post from 1883-1885. In the latter year he was elected as Secretary of the State of Maine and served a total of three terms in this office, 1885 to 1891. At the conclusion of his last term as Secretary in 1891, Smith began a lengthy tenure on the Maine Governor's Council. During his service (which concluded in 1902) he served in the administrations of 3 successive Republican Governors: Edwin C. Burleigh (1889-93), Henry Bradstreet Cleaves (1893-97) and Llewellyn Powers (1897-1901).

                                      This roster of Maine Treasurers was published in 1913.

   In 1901 Smith was elected as the State Treasurer of Maine, and like his previous tenure as Secretary of State, served three terms in office. In addition to his numerous political activities, Smith was active in the civic affairs of his native town of Litchfield, serving as the chairman of the executive committee of his alma mater (the Litchfield Academy) for over 25 years. He also was a trustee of the Maine School for the Feeble Minded for a time. Ormandal Smith is listed as dying on May 21, 1915, and was presumably buried in his hometown of Litchfield. He was preceded in death by his wife Jennie, who died in 1906 after 31 years of marriage.

              This portrait of Oramandal Smith was found in the History of Litchfield and an Account 
                  of its Centennial Celebrations, originally published in 1897.

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