|About A Tribute to Mr. & Mrs. Johnson Crayne Smith
A TRIBUTE TO MR & MRS. JOHNSON CRAYNE SMITH
For many years a prominent merchant and man of affairs of McKeesport, the last years of Mr.
Smith's long life were spent in Pittsburgh, where he acquired many interests and had many points
of contact with the life of the city. He was one of the best known drug merchants of this district
for four decades, and there was scarcely a progressive movement in his city with which he was not
identified, either as a leader or supporter of the project. Mr. Smith was an able business man of
broad executive talent, but has daily life had important interests beyond the world of trade, and
his religious, philanthropic, and charitable activities were productive of widespread good. He was
held in unwavering regard by his associates and friends for personal qualities of mind and heart
that found their expression in quiets deeds of good will and brotherhood, and in his bearing of
Johnson C. Smith was a son of James and Margaret (Johnson) Smith, of one of Washington county's
early families, the grandfather, Dennis Smith, a soldier of the Revolution, being one of the
pioneer settlers. Johnson C. Smith, was born in Amwell township, Washington county, Pa., Oct. 27,
1844, and died in Pittsburgh, in early young manhood, he entered the retail drug business in
McKeesport, and for forty years continued in this field with steady prosperity. His establishment
was known as the Hiawatha Drug Store, and under his wise management this bcame one of the most
popular pharmacies of the city, noted for the careful, courteous, capable attention its patrons
received. He extended his interests into the broader lines of industry and public utilities, and
became a potent factor in a number of leading enterprises. He was chairman of the executive
committee of the McKeesport Tin Plate Company, second vice-president of the People's Bank of
McKeesport, an organizer and president of the McKeesport Street Railway Company, and an officer
and director of the McKeesport Gas Company. In practical affairs he was the spirit of forceful
initiative, wise in counsel and decisive in action, and under his leadership movements of value
and benefit to the community were consummated.
Mr. Smith made Pittsburgh his home in 1910, and brought his membership to the Third Presbyterian
Church. He was active in denominational work, served on the board of the Association for the
Improvement of the Poor, both of Pittsburgh. His contributions to their work were of his means as
well as of his time and service, and in this, as in all of his beneficent work, he sought the
method by which the greatest good might be accomplished with the least public notice.
Mr. Smith married, Oct. 24, 1883, Jane Morrow Berry, daughter of James H. and Jane (Morrow) Berry.
Mrs. Smith is a member of the board of the Association for the Improvement of the Poor, the Board
of the Home for Aged Protestants, men and couples, of Wilkinsburg, the board of directors of the
East End Young Women's Christian Association, and the Twentieth Century Club. Their home was Mr.
Smith's chief joy, and there he spent his happiest hours. Mrs. Smith, who was always his associate
in good works, continues her interest in and support of the organizations whose work they had long
Fleming, G.T. (1922). History of Pittsburgh and Environs: Biographical. American Historical