This is a story that is unfortunately reported numerous times every day in newspapers around the country. The only difference is that this story took place on July 6, 1932, in the main house of the Reynolda Estate on Reynolda Road in Winston-Salem. Every family has its share of secrets and tragedies. This is the story of one local family that has been shrouded in rumor and a mystery that still eludes solving.
By Judie Holcomb-Pack
Zachary Smith “Smith” Reynolds was the youngest child of R.J. and Katharine Smith Reynolds of the Reynolds Tobacco Company. Smith had a daring, risk-taking streak that from an early age lured him into an interest in aviation. At just 16 years old, Smith received his private pilot’s license and the next year became the nation’s youngest transport pilot. His risk-taking adventures continued as he became an accomplished stunt pilot, competing alongside Amelia Earhart and meeting Charles Lindbergh on the air show circuit.
Just after turning 18, he married Anne Cannon, heiress of Cannon Mills, the world’s leading producer of towels and bedsheets. A daughter, also named Anne, was born before Smith and Anne divorced in Reno, Nevada. By that time, Smith’s affections had turned...