Samuel W. Small photo

Samuel White Small

Samuel White Small, A.M., D.D., or, as he is generally known, Sam Small, was born in Knoxville, Tennessee on July 3, 1851, of Scotch and English ancestry.  His family, as far back as he can trace, has been noted for its Total Abstinence principles.  After a good preliminary schooling and strict religious training from his Methodist mother and Presbyterian grandfather, he entered Emory and Henry College, in southwestern Virginia, graduating well up in his class.  His first regular occupation was that of express messenger between New Orleans and Mobile.  After spending a few years at this, he removed to Nashville, Tennessee, where he began the study of law, was soon admitted to the bar and practiced for some time with notable success.  The gay, fashionable life of the town, however, soon drew him into habits of dissipation, and he lost many good opportunities of advancement.  For the next dozen years, he was engaged in various occupations, chiefly journalism.  In 1875, he removed to Georgia and took a position with the Atlanta Constitution, with which journal he remained for six years, acquiring some considerable reputation as a writer under the sobriquet “Old Si.”  In 1876, he was appointed official reporter of the superior courts of the Atlanta circuit, holding this position for 10 years.  Two years later, he was an attaché of the United States commission in the Universal Exposition of Paris.
     By this time, he had become a confirmed drunkard.  But one day, in September 1885, he attended a meeting held by Rev, Sam Jones, at Cartersville, Georgia, and was converted.  He almost immediately began evangelistic, temperance, and Prohibition work. He was a member of the national Prohibition convention of 1888, one of the members of the national Prohibition Executive Committee, was the Party’s candidate for State senator from the Atlanta district in 1888, and for Congress in 1892.  He was a leader in the great campaign in Norfolk, Virginia which resulted, in May, 1894, in the election of a Prohibition administration and the rescue of the city from rum rule.  In October, 1894, he began the publication of The Daily Pilot, one of the most successful Prohibition dailies ever published.
    Mr. Small was married in 1873 to Miss Annie Isabelle Arnold.  They have three children,

— Data from Ana Album of Representative Prohibitionists (1895)