Asa J. Smith Oral History
20 March 1969
1 transcript, 1 tape

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Processed by: Christina Baich, May 2006

Biographical Note:

Asa Jessup Smith was born on January 20, 1894, in Wabash, Indiana. His parents were Andrew Jackson Smith, a Methodist and doctor, and Louisa Frances (Jessup) Smith, a Quaker. He graduated from DePauw University in 1915 and the Indiana University Law School in 1917. Though he came from a Quaker background, he enlisted in the Marines during World War I. He served as a Private from 1917 to 1919 and was wounded at the Battle of Belleau Wood (1918). On June 10, 1920, he married Lena Tweedy.

Smith was private secretary to U.S. Senator Harry S. New and Clerk of the Committee on Territories in the United States Senate (1919-1921). He also served as a State Representative (1923); U.S. Commissioner and Special Master of the U.S. District Court, Southern District of Indiana (1947-1950 and 1949-1954, respectively); and Chief Deputy Prosecutor for Marion County (1954-1958). During World War II, he reached the rank of Lieutenant Colonel (1940-1945). He died on February 12, 1973.

Hawkins, Hubert H. and Robert R. McClarren. Indiana Lives. Hopkinsville, KY: Historical Record Association, 1967.

Scope and Content Note:

The collection contains a transcript and tapes of an interview with Asa J. Smith conducted by Thomas Krasean on March 20, 1969. During the interview, Smith discusses his experiences as a Marine during World War I, Indiana political campaigns, the League of Nations, Harry S. New, Tom Taggart, George Coffin, James E. Watson, and Sherman Minton. He also discusses his association with the Oberholtzer family, including his representation of the family during the D. C. Stephenson trial.

Item Listing:

1969 Mar. 20 Reel-to-reel tape
1969 Mar. 20 Transcript

Collection Information:

Size of Collection:

1 typed transcript, 1 reel-to-reel tape

Collection Dates:

20 March 1969


Indiana State Library Oral history project

Access: This collection is open for research.



Reproduction Rights:

Permission to reproduce, exhibit, or publish material in this collection must be obtained from the Manuscript Section, Indiana State Library.  Possession of a reproduction from an Indiana State Library collection does not constitute permission for use.

Language Materials are entirely in English

Alternate Formats:


Related Holdings:

 S2417, L368



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Manuscript materials CANNOT be photocopied or digitized in their entirety. Photocopies and/or digital images cannot exceed 25% of a collection or a folder within a collection. In some cases, photocopying may not be permitted due to the condition of the item. Check with a Manuscript Librarian for other options.