Devoted to deep roots and the freedom to grow.
Smithville was proud to celebrate 100 years of service in 2022. We have accomplished much, and look forward to another 100 years of innovations to keep Hoosiers connected to what matters most.
Mining and quarry operations in Monroe County Indiana have a communications challenge. An Innovative solution using then-emerging new communications technology solves the issue. J.K. Johnston created the three original exchanges: Clear Creek, Smithville and Ellettsville. J.K. Johnston establishes a communications system to connect major Monroe County quarries at Clear Creek, Smithville and Ellettsville. Mr. Johnston founds his new company in Smithville, Indiana.
Guy A. Draper purchases the company from Johnston and builds the operation as a family business.
Byron A. Draper succeeds his father and guides the company’s expansion in 14 Central and Southern Central Indiana counties – leading Smithville through a new era of technological innovation.
The Smithville Telephone Company (STC) acquires the Gosport exhange in Owen County, extending Smithville’s primary incumbent local Exchange Carrier (ILEC) residential network. Smithville leads the state in converting its rural operations from party lines (manual operations) to stand-alone dial tone service. The Stanford Exchange is created and they absorb the Clear Creek Manual Exchange. Shortly afterwards, all of its exchanges are converted from manual operations to dial technology.
The Star Telephone Company at French Lick is acquired and converted to dial service.
Smithville Telephone Company acquires eight properties including Hymera, Lyons, Marco, Switz City, Sharpsville, Goldsmith, Griffin and Lizton and coverts them all to dial technology.
Greene County communities, served by the Scotland and The Farmers Cooperative Telephone Company were joined with Owensburg Cooperative Telephone Company and converted to dial technology.
STC acquires Stewartsville Mutual Telephone Company and combines it with the Griffin exchange.
The Newberry Telephone Corporation merges with the Lyons Exchange.
Pleasantville incorporated Telephone Company merges with the Lyons Exchange.
Patricia A. Earles, Draper’s daughter, takes over as Smithville’s President and Chairman of the Board following his passing.
Ms. Earles starts an eleven year process to convert all twelve Smithville exchanges to digital service.
Smithville constructs its first fiber-optic rings, connecting Ellettsville, Standford and Smithville (Indiana) offices with Indiana Bell’s Bloomington facility.
Smithville acquires its first Internet customers after setting up a dial-up server one year after the Internet becomes a public network.
William H. Earles succeeds his wife Patricia as President and Chairman of the Board.
Mr. Earles leads Smithville into the new millennium with the addition of long distance and communication services including high-speed internet. Smithville merges with BlueMarble Telecom and begins offering the high-speed DSL service with BlueMarble functioning as the internet service provider and Smithville providing the service.
William Earles passes away and his daughter, Darby A. McCarty, becomes President, Chairman and CEO of Smithville Communications. Ms. McCarty launches. arenewed focus on innovation and technology adoption, creating Smithville Digital (later Smithville Fiber) to offer customized high-speed data and internet services. Darby’s son, Cullen H. McCarty is named Vice-President of the new Smithville commercial operations.
Smithville Communications secures $90 million in federally-backed commercial loans and begins an overbuild to convert all residential and business customers to a full fiber-optic network, and acquires its first residential fiber customers. In helping to announce the expansion, then Lt. Gov. Becky Skillman calls Smithville the “State Champion of Fiber Broadband”. The city of Columbus selects Smithville over national providers to develop and manage its fiber operations.
Smithville begins to expand its commercial enterprise operations to provide high-speed secure fiber service to hospitals, manufacturing operations, schools banks and other entities. Smithville also begins providing hig-speed secure fiber service to the WestGate @ Crane Technology Park next to the $2 billion NSWC federal lab in Southern Indiana and the Purdue research Park in West Lafayette. In the same year, Smithville receives its first “Top 100 Broadband company” designation from Broadband Communities Magazine. This achievement begins an ongoing multi-year distinction for the company. Smithville TV is also launched.
Smithville acquires a small Telephone Company in Arkansas called Rice Belt Telephone and converts its services to fiber.
Smithville turns up its residential fiber service to a full gigabit – an Indiana first. The one-month free trial validates its service.
Smithville starts to bring fiber to each of its internet cabinets. The project gives its DSL customers much faster and reliable speeds. John Patton joins Smithville and is named President. Smithville expands its CLEC (Competitive Local Exchange Carrier) service into the city of Bloomington for the first time. It constructs an all-symmetrical gigabit (1000 megabits) network for the Blue Ridge neighborhood. This project serves as a prototype for projects to follow.
Smithville is selected by the city of jasper to build Indiana’s first GigaCity, which attracts national attention. The five-year expansion project will provide all Jasper residents with access to Smithville’s new gigabit symmetrical service (1000 Mbps up and down). The company adopts a new Smithville Fiber brand for use in its CLEC expansion areas.
Smithville turns on its first fiber customers in the city of Jasper. Smithville also begins a $4.5 Million, 100 gigabit, fiber ring that will enable the company to provide national high-end data transmission for commercial clients. Smithville expands it CLEC operations into Bloomington in the Lakes neighborhood area, which will eventually include retail businesses, apartments and more than 250 homes.
Smithville begins converting all of Ellettsville, the location of the company headquarters, to fiber internet.
The company receives two Next Level Connection Broadband Grants that are part of the state of Indiana infrastructure program to help expand broadband services in rural parts of the state.
Smithville signs its 20,000th data customer.
Smithville finishes the City of Jasper Gigacity project.
Smithville celebrates 100 years of connections.
Smithville understands the importance of being connected. That’s why we are completely committed to enriching our customers’ lives. No matter where you are, we will bring the future to you.
While we understand the importance of the future, we also understand the immediacy of now. Now is where you are. Now is the roots that we have all planted. Those roots yield the future.
America’s heartland is all about roots and vision. And we’re all about America’s heartland.
Small town roots. Big time vision.
Recognized nationally as a Top 100 broadband provider, Smithville Fiber is built from the ground up by Hoosiers, for Hoosiers. An award-winning communications technology company, Smithville had modest beginnings nearly a century ago as an Indiana telecommunications company. While its products and services have changed as technology has, its commitment to its customers has remained steadfast. Today, that commitment is reflected in Smithville’s dedication to bringing the best available technology platform to Indiana residents for state-of-the-art communication and data services, all with the highest possible level of customer satisfaction.
Smithville knows all about Indiana family businesses — because it is one! While the company has grown to be Indiana’s largest privately held telecommunications company, its core family-focused values make it unique. From its corporate headquarters near Bloomington, Smithville employs nearly 200 Hoosiers and invests in community projects, large and small, in its service areas.
Our connection to community goes far beyond business. We believe in being involved in our communities and giving back through philanthropic activities. Investing in the organizations and people we serve is a Smithville priority.
Public Relations Contact
For any Smithville public relations information, please contact:
Smithville VP, Marketing