Frederick George Schmidt and
Caroline Matilda Beadle
By W. T. Block
Will Block, Sr.s maternal grandparents were Frederick George Schmidt (b. Dresden,
Germany August 22, 1806-d. Johnson Bayou, LA February 2, 1877)
and Caroline Matilda Beadle
(b. Sept. 1828 Abbeville, LA-d. February 19, 1915 at Johnson Bayou, LA).
would not carry the Smith name, and his wife and children would not take the Schmidt name.
And so read their tombstones in the well-kept Smith Cemetery, on Smith Road, Smith Ridge
at Johnson Bayou, where I have visited a few times. Smith Ridge is a high land ridge in
the marsh about ten miles long and from 200 yards to a half-mile wide. In 1992, a distant
cousin of ours, Ruth (Mrs. Gay) McKinley, who lives on Howard St. in Beaumont, published Smith
Family Ties: Descendants of Frederick Schmidt and Caroline Matilda Smith, hardback,
in which all the Will Block descendants and their spouses are listed by birth (and death
if applicable) dates. Some Will Block descendants own copies of this valuable genealogical
source, which is still available for sale.
Frederick George Schmidt, a sailor, emigrated from Bremen to Johnson Bayou, LA ca.
1839, and he married Caroline Matilda Beadle (who was orphaned) ca. 1842. Schmidt was
reputedly the first cotton plantation owner and cotton ginner at Johnson Bayou, all the
earliest settlers being cattlemen. Frederick and Matilda Smith were the parents of about