Smith celebrates 100th birthday
by The Press and Standard | May 11, 2019 5:00 am
Last Updated: May 9, 2019 at 7:58 am
Mattie Lou Smith, a long-time resident of Walterboro, turned 100 years old on April 16, 2019.
Born the fifth of 14 children of Isaac and Eliza Green, Mattie spent most of childhood moving between Eutawville, Green Pond and Walterboro. She remained in Walterboro from her teenage years into adulthood.
In 1939, she married florist and farmer Samuel Elijah Smith and moved to their red brick house in Walterboro. Mattie worked various jobs as a housekeeper and nanny. She and Sam were married for 52 years until Sam passed away on March 31, 1992. They had six children — five sons and one daughter — Sam Smith Jr., John Smith, Benjamin Franklin Smith, Ernest Smith, Louis Smith and Anna Smith (Jones). They also have 22 grandchildren, 29 great-grandchildren, and 10 or so great-great-grandchildren.
Due to health concerns, in 1998 Mattie relocated to her winter home in Bartow, Fla., with her daughter and her son-in-law. The move was initially for a few months out of the year and in 2011 became full-time. She spends her days in very good health and relaxation, watching three of her great-grandchildren grow up.
On March 30, 2019, Mattie’s family held a birthday celebration for her in Lakeland, Fla. The event was attended by 130 people from all over the East Coast including Florida, South Carolina, New York, Connecticut, Georgia and Pennsylvania. The celebration was a wonderful time that included musical and dance performances from Mattie’s grandchildren and stories of love and cherished moments from her children, relatives and family friends.
Her openness, compassion and wisdom has touched many hearts over the last century. And her legacy, borne in the hearts of all that know her, will live on for many more years to come.