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county was founded in 1890. Blaine County was named after James
Gillespie Blaine, a Representative and a Senator from Maine; born in
West Brownsville, Washington County, Pa., January 31, 1830;
graduated from Washington College, Washington, Pa., in 1847; taught at
the Western Military Institute, Blue Lick Springs, Ky.; returned to
Pennsylvania; studied law; taught at the Pennsylvania Institution for
the Blind in Philadelphia 1852-1854; moved in 1854 to Maine, where he
edited the Portland Advertiser and the Kennebec Journal; member, State
house of representatives 1859-1862, serving the last two years as
speaker; elected as a Republican to the Thirty-eighth and to the six
succeeding Congresses and served
from March 4, 1863, to July 10, 1876, when he resigned; Speaker of the
House of Representatives (Forty-first through Forty-third Congresses);
chairman, Committee on Rules (Forty-third through Forty-fifth
Congresses); unsuccessful candidate for nomination for President on the
Republican ticket in 1876 and 1880; appointed and subsequently elected
as a Republican to the United States Senate to fill the vacancy caused
by the resignation of Lot M. Morrill; reelected and served from July
10, 1876, to March 5, 1881,
when he resigned to become Secretary of State; chairman, Committee on
Civil Service and Retrenchment (Forty-fifth Congress), Committee on
Rules (Forty-fifth Congress); Secretary of State in the Cabinets of
Presidents James Garfield and Chester Arthur, from March 5 to December
12, 1881; unsuccessful Republican candidate for President of the United
States in 1884; Secretary of State in the Cabinet of President Benjamin
Harrison 1889-1892, when he resigned; aided in organizing and was the
first president of the
Pan American Congress; died in Washington, D.C., January 27, 1893;
interment in Oak Hill Cemetery; reinterment at the request of the State
of Maine in the Blaine Memorial Park, Augusta, Maine, in June 1920.
Blaine County Courthouse was completed in 1906 at a cost of $42,137.
Its special features include a vaulted dome, arched windows and
ornamental brick work. The building is listed on the National Register
of Historic Buildings.
The county seat is Watonga and was named for Arapaho Chief Wa-ton-gha, whose name meant Black Coyote.
County is the birthplace of voice actor Clarence Nash, the voice of
Donald Duck. Prominent Oklahomans who have lived in Blaine County
include authors William Cunningham, Earnest Hoberecht, Sidney Stewart,
Fleta Campbell Springer, and Maud Richmond Calvert. Thompson B.
Ferguson served as territorial governor. His wife, Elva Ferguson, was
significant in her own right as journalist and editor of the Watonga
Dr. Earl D. McBride, prominent bone specialist and founder of the
McBride Clinic and Bone and Joint Hospital in Oklahoma City, once
resided in Watonga.
CITIES & TOWNS
Canton; Geary; Geary; Greenfield; Hitchcock; Hydro; Longdale; Okeene; Watonga