Pvt Alvertis Smith

Our Hometown Heroes

Alvertis Smith

First “Forgotten” WW1 Soldier Found

One could say that Alvertis Smith started it all. You see Smith, was the first “forgotten” black soldier from World War 1, that was “discovered” by Griffin Archivist Cynthia Barton. Smith and a dozen other black soldiers were “missing” from the monument in Memorial Park. The “find” gave the spark that Barton needed to “discover” and research the other soldiers.

Living atR.F.D. 9, Box 40 in Griffin, Alvertis Smith was born February 25, 1896. He was a farm laborer on the Ogletree farm. Smith was inducted into the U.S. Army as a private when he was 22 years old. Smith would serve in the U.S Army exactly two months. Pneumonia would claim Smith’syoung life on October 10, 1918. His father, George Washington Smith would be notified of his son’s death.

But thanks to the efforts of Barton, the Honor our KIA and Veterans Military Affairs committees, Smith and othersare no longer forgotten.

This changed during the Memorial Day weekend, May 29-30, 2016 as Smith and other, “Lost and Forgotten,” World War I soldiers were honored with individual plaques and their names on the Veterans Memorial Park “Doughboy” statue. Thanks to efforts of Griffin Archivist Cynthia Barton, the Veterans Military Affairs and Honor our KIA committees, Pvt. Smith is now remembered as one of Griffin-Spalding’s Hometown Heroes.

An individual plaque honoring Floyd Anderson will be installed in Griffin’s Historic District sponsored by the Griffin Branch of the NAACP.