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The History of Oklahoma Biographies Vol. II
by Luther B. Hill
Page 13


MR. THOBURN, Of Oklahoma City, is a native of the Buckeye state, having been born at Bellaire, Ohio, in August, 1866. His paternal grandparents were natives of Northern Ireland, the Thoburns (or Thorburns) being a Scottish family of Norse origin. Mr. Thoburn's father, Thomas C. Thoburn, was reared in Belmont County, Ohio, though he was born at Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. His life was spent entirely on the farm until he entered the volunteer military service of the United States in 1862, as an enlisted man. After three years of arduous and faithful service he was mustered out, at the end of the war, with the rank of major. Mr. Thoburn's mother, whose maiden name was Mary Eleanor Crozier, was a native of Stark county, Ohio. Her ancestors came to America from Ireland in the early part of the eighteenth century, but the Crozier (or Crozer) family were originally French Huguenots. She died in 1895.

Maj. Thomas C. Thoburn migrated with his family from Ohio, to Peabody, Marion county, Kansas, early in 1871, when his son was but four years old. Having been among the first settlers to locate in that vicinity, they experienced all of the vicissitudes and hardships incident to pioneer life in the West at that period. After being reared on a farm and having a common school education, Joseph B. Thoburn learned the "art preservative" in a country printing office at Peabody.

He was several years past his majority when he entered the Kansas Agricultural College, from which institution he graduated in 1893. In 1894 he was married to Miss Callie Conwell of Manhattan, Kansas. They have one child, a daughter, Mary E.

The subject of this sketch located at Oklahoma City in 1899, and followed the printing trade and newspaper work for several years. In 1902 he served for some months as secretary of the Oklahoma City Commercial Club, which, largely as the result of his efforts, was reorganized under the name of the Chamber of Commerce. Simultaneously with the reorganization of that institution, Mr. Thoburn was chosen by the newly organized Territorial Board of Agriculture as its first secretary, a position which he filled for two years and a half. While acting in that capacity, he supervised the organization of the farmers' institutes in the Territory, did effective work in securing needed legislation for the improvement of the public highways, irrigation and drainage development, nursery inspection and otherwise proved his usefulness and fidelity to the agricultural interests of Oklahoma.

Mr. Thoburn has been a member of the Methodist Episcopal Church since boyhood. He was one of the active projectors of Epworth University, the educational institution at Oklahoma City, which has the unique distinction of having been the first practical effort at federation in educational lines by the two great branches of Episcopal Methodism, and he is still a member of the board of trustees of that institution. Mrs. Thoburn is also an active worker in church and missionary circles.

At the present time Mr. Thoburn is devoting his attention almost entirely to literary pursuits, having (in collaboration with Mr. Isaac M. Holcomb) recently completed an outline study of the history of the new state, which has been adopted for use as a text-book in the public schools of Oklahoma. Politically, he is a Republican, though not a narrow partisan. He is a member of two fraternal orders (Masonic and Modern Woodmen) and one patriotic society (Sons of the American Revolution).


The Oklahoma City postoffice has a history that is almost unique in the records of the postoffice department, in that it was established and was ready for business several days before the town came into existence, and while the site had no other occupants than land office employees and other federal officials. The little hut erected for the distribution of the first mail addressed to Oklahoma City stood out on the prairie, amid the waving grass, almost solitary as a representative of the civilization which would soon cover this wilderness and build a city equal to many in the older states.

George A. Beidler was the first postmaster of Oklahoma City, and it was due to his foresighted planning and activity that a postoffice was established in advance of the occupation of the town. As his entire career shows, Mr. Beidler is possessed of the originating pioneer spirit, and it was this that persuaded him to become one of the first citizens of Oklahoma. In line with this intention, he went to Washington, and having a personal acquaintance with the then Postmaster General Wanamaker and other government officials, he was given the commission to establish the postoffice and become the first postmaster of the Oklahoma City to be. There was no such place on the map at the time, but it was known that this was to be a center of the new country.

The following telegram from the adjutant general to General Crook at Chicago, dated April 15, 1889, gave official confirmation to the establishment of the postoffice at Oklahoma City before the opening: "Postmaster general informs the secretary of war that in order to expedite mail service in Oklahoma, I. T., permission be given Mr. G. A. Beidler, postmaster at Oklahoma, to erect a building for the accommodation of the postoffice there in advance of the date fixed for the formal opening of the territory to settlement."

Armed with his commission, with some postoffice supplies and with a small quantity of building material, Mr. Beidler reached the proposed townsite several days before the opening. The following day he had his building up, ready for business. Clearly, it had nothing in common with the fine business structures that now line the business streets of the metropolis. The word hut describes it almost perfectly, it being constructed on the stockade plan. Fortunately, Mr. Beidler possesses a photograph of this historic building, showing himself standing in front of it with a mail bag in his hand. The building was located near the Santa Fe tracks, on what is now West Main Street, about where the Kingman-Moore Implement Company building now stands. It served as the postoffice only a few months, being replaced by Mr. Beidler with a larger building on the same site, a two-story frame. Mr. Beidler was postmaster for the first six years of the city's existence, by the end of which time a real city had grown up around where the little postoffice stood. Many stories are told by Oklahomans about the early postal facilities, all of them tending to illustrate how difficult it was to carry on the business of a postoffice established on the bare prairie and suddenly called on to deliver mail to thousands of unknown people. Also, here as in other cities of Oklahoma, it was nearly impossible to get the postoffice department to understand the rapid growth of this country and its corresponding need of increased postal facilities, so that the local officials were continually hampered by the restrictions of a lower-class office being applied to a city of this size. While his term as postmaster involved a great deal of hard work without corresponding remuneration, Mr. Beidler considers it a unique honor and distinction to have been the first postmaster of the metropolis of Oklahoma. Old citizens say that his administration was marked by the strictest honesty and efficiency.

In George A. Beidler the city of Oklahoma has a citizen of remarkable enterprise and ingenuity. Besides holding offices of trust and being a successful business man, he has been a pioneer, a soldier, and an inventor. He possesses the excellent talent of initiative, and all his life has eagerly entered upon new fields of endeavor whenever the opportunity came. Born in Dauphin County, Pennsylvania, in 1842, he comes of a family that has given to the world several other leaders in affairs. He is of German descent on his father's side, his grandfather having settled in Pennsylvania from Germany, and on his mother's side he comes of the Hoke family, of which Hon. Hoke Smith of Georgia is a conspicuous member. Congressman Beidler of Cleveland is a cousin of Mr. Beidler. A still more remarkable man was the late J. X. Beidler (a brother of George A.), whose name and achievements have become part and parcel for all time of the early history of the Northwest, especially of Montana. He was one of Montana's pioneers, and as United States marshal, sheriff, chief of the vigilantes, associated with Col. W. F. Sanders and other noted characters of Montana, he displayed surpassing courage and energy in purifying Montana of its criminal element. A monument erected to his memory at Helena is a well deserved memorial of one of the bravest men in that or any other state.

George A. Beidler moved west while a boy, first to Logan County, Illinois, and in 1860 crossed the plains with a wagon party to Colorado, where he was successfully engaged in gold mining for a year or so. Returning to Logan County in 1862, he enlisted in the One Hundred and Sixth Illinois Infantry, and served his country to the end of the war, mainly in Tennessee and Arkansas under General Steele. He was promoted to sergeant major and later to lieutenant of his company (B), his regiment being commanded by Colonel Yates. After the war Philadelphia became his permanent home, and there his talents were applied to mechanical invention, with much practical success. Among the useful devices invented by him were lanterns, chimney burners, steamboat propellers, and a practical form of wood paving. During the early seventies he interrupted his activity along these lines by a period spent in Montana, where he joined his brother and was for a time engaged in mining in the noted gold camps of Virginia City, Last Chance Gulch and others. Since serving as postmaster of Oklahoma City, Mr. Beidler has been identified with the city in various ways. He served one term as register of deeds of Oklahoma County, but has since given most of his attention to the real estate business and inventing. He bought and promoted the sale of the residence lots in Beidler Heights, one of the most beautiful residence additions to the city, and where his own home is located.

He is one of the most active members of the First Methodist Episcopal church of this city, being on the board of trustees and for nearly six years superintendent of the Sunday school. He is past commander of Grant Post, G. A. R., has been its chaplain for several years, and was recently endorsed for the position of department commander of Oklahoma. Mr. Beidler married, in Philadelphia, Miss Arline Umberger. Mrs. Bernice E. Hughes is the younger of their two children, and the son is George C. Beidler, who like his father is a successful inventor. The rectigraph, a copying device, is his invention, and the Rectigraph Company was organized for its manufacture, with plant at Rochester, New York. G. C. Beidler is vice president of the company, and one of the financial backers of the enterprise is Hon. Dennis Flynn.


In the meat packing industry, Oklahoma offers comparatively a virgin field. For years its broad territory has furnished thousands of herds for the slaughter pens of Kansas City, Chicago and other well known packing centers, but the development of a home industry is a subject of very recent history. On the south, Fort Worth has been an important market for some years, and on the north Wichita has reached considerable importance in this field, but the broad expanse of Oklahoma has been a factor in the meat industry mainly as a source of supply.

Oklahoma City was a natural point for the location of a plant that would draw its supply from the Oklahoma stock farms. In 1899 the first considerable effort was made to establish such an industry. In that year the Hoefer Packing Company of St. Joseph, Missouri, built a branch in this city. In 1902 the business passed into the hands of the Oklahoma Packing Company, which had been organized by Mr. E. F. Sparrow, of the American National Bank, who became president of the company. After three years the Oklahoma Packing Company discontinued operations. The plant had not been entirely a success, due perhaps to the lack of proper and experienced management of the details of the business.

The plant lay idle for some time, awaiting the enterprise and experience necessary to make a success of the business. These requisites were found in the person of Max Hahn, who came from Dallas, Texas, in the summer of 1907, and after looking over the abandoned plant decided to re-establish the business. Mr. Hahn had been a successful retailer and meat packer in Dallas for twenty years. Born in the province of Rheinpfalz, Bavaria, in 1863, he early learned the butcher's trade and has followed the business all his life. On coming to America at the age of fourteen, he was an employee in shops in New York City and state, and later went to work in one of the big packing plants at Kansas City, where he mastered the details of the business and laid the foundation for his independent career. In 1887 he began the retail meat business in Dallas in a small way, but with the development of that town into one of the important southwestern cities he expanded his business accordingly, and soon had three large meat markets supplying his retail trade in that city. From the retail shop, and to supplement it, he established a packing plant, and began supplying a large country trade. This branch of his enterprise at first met with obstinate competition, but he pushed it along until his Dallas packing house was recognized as one of the important business assets of the city. Furthermore, his achievement was such as to win the admiration of the leading business and financial interests of the city, and with this backing and encouragement he was able to secure favorable commission arrangements at the Fort Worth stockyards, enabling him to buy stock there on an equal footing with the big Chicago packing companies who control the Fort Worth yards; a result that no independent packer hitherto had been able to accomplish.

The Hahn Packing Company now has its principal plant in Oklahoma City, the old one at Dallas being continued as a branch. This concentration of the business here was due to the faith of its founder in the greatness of Oklahoma City as the commercial center of the new state, and also a keen appreciation of the advantages to the company that will utilize and develop the new field of Oklahoma as a packing supply. The new plant started under good auspices, and its initial capacity for slaughtering about 400 head of cattle and about 1,200 hogs per week will be increased as business warrants. The Max Hahn Packing Company plant is on the east side of the Santa Fe tracks at the intersection of Frisco Street. The buildings are large and commodious, and under Mr. Hahn's supervision have been re-equipped with the best of modern machinery and every facility for the expeditious and economical handling of the business. The stockyards in connection are conducted with a liberal policy that is certain to be broadly beneficial to the city. No commission charges exacted from stock shippers, who, after shipping their stock to this point, are allowed, if not satisfied with the local market, to re-ship to Kansas City or other points, without charge for water and pens. Whether Oklahoma City is destined to become a great stock market depends upon future developments, but it can be said with assurance that the establishment of this one plant here, fostered by its liberal business policy, will be directly beneficial to the live-stock industry in Oklahoma by offering a market to the small shippers who previously could not, profitably, ship stock to distant markets in less than carload lots. To nearby stock growers it also offers advantages in that the stock suffers less depreciation in transit. Mr. Hahn, at the head of the business, is thoroughly experienced in its every detail, is a competent business manager, and has ample financial resources for the promotion of this large concern. His entrance into the industrial field means much for the future development of Oklahoma City. Associated with him are his two sons, Carl and Max, Jr., both of whom are capable young business men.


HE is an architect of well known ability and renown in eastern Oklahoma, and his professional career here covers the period of the city's remarkable expansion to its present metropolitan proportions. One of the most notable buildings which stand as a monument to his wonderful skill as an architect is the magnificent Masonic Temple at Guthrie, of which he was the architect not only of the original building, but of the more recent additions to the beautiful structure. He designed the dormitory for the Langston University, the Christian church of Chickasha and the Christian church of Oklahoma City. He is also the architect of several bank buildings throughout Oklahoma, notably of the Hite Brothers Bank of Anadarko, the Finnerty Bank at Cordell, the bank of the Purcell Bank and Trust Company, the First National Bank of Elk City, two bank buildings at Wynnewood, the Thomas (Oklahoma) National Bank and many others of the finest structures of the state. Of those mentioned nearly all are of a classic style of architecture.

Although so closely allied with the progress and development of Oklahoma Mr. Turbyfill is a native son of North Carolina, born in Lincoln County in 1867, and he is of English ancestry. On coming to this country the family first located in Virginia, and to a member of this family belongs the distinction of building the first house in Petersburg, that state. In 1880 the Turbyfills moved from Lincoln County to Texas, first locating in Cooke County, and thus D. W. F. Turbyfill attended school in both states. Returning after a time to North Carolina he attended Concordia College in Catawba County, and his professional education was obtained principally in the Maack School of Architecture in St. Louis, but he also pursued courses in architecture in Dallas and other of the principal cities of Texas. He began his work in what was formerly Indian Territory, spending a year or so at St. Paul's Valley and Wynnewood, and continuing at Guthrie, Oklahoma. In 1899 he located permanently in Oklahoma City, and his professional career here covers the period of the city's remarkable growth and development, while during all this time he has engraved his name indelibly on the pages of its history.

Some of the handsomest and most substantial structures, both business and residence, in this city are of his designing. He was the architect of the Gault building, the McCord Collins building, the Martin building, and one of his latest business structures is a three story brick building for the Britton Brothers on Third Street. He designed the residences of M. L. Turner, Dennis Flynn, O. A. Mitscher, John Alexander and F. E. Fulton, these being among the finest in the city.

Mr. Turbyfill married in Wynnewood Miss Mattie Winbray, who was born and reared in Texas, and they have one son, M. Angelo Turbyfill.


HE has become one of the able lawyers of Oklahoma City and is also one of the prominent Democrats of city and state, being, so it is understood, in line for promotion by his party to the office of governor of the state. Mr. Giddings was born at San Antonio, Texas, August 4, 1874, son of Colonel George H. and Julia M. (Thompson) Giddings. His father was a Confederate soldier, and commanded the Sixth Texas Infantry in the last engagement of the Civil war. On the mother's side, also, Mr. Giddings has a military record as a heritage, his mother being the granddaughter of the gallant Commodore Truxton, the hero of the brief period of hostility between the United States and France in 1799.

Mr. Giddings was educated in the public schools of New York City, and graduated from the University of Texas in 1893 with the degree of LL.B. At the beginning of his career as a lawyer he practiced in San Antonio, with the firm of Sweringer and Brooks for a year and a half, and was in independent practice at Gainesville, Texas, until the outbreak of the Spanish-American war, at which time he enlisted in the Third Texas Infantry, U. S. V. He was commissioned first lieutenant, but his regiment never left the United States for active service. Since then Mr. Giddings has practiced his profession in Oklahoma City.


THE president of Bennett Sherman Realty Company and well known throughout Oklahoma City and the state as a dealer in real estate and a promoter of business and industrial enterprises on a large scale, is a native of St. Charles, Missouri, where he was born on the 11th of August, 1870. He is a son of George D. and Mamie (Parks) Bennett, and obtained his education in the public schools of Dallas, Texas, and his early business training also in that city. His first experience in the commercial world was with Sanger Brothers dry goods house of Dallas, as a stock boy in their notion department. When eighteen years of age he was appointed their salesman for Texas, remaining in that capacity until 1904, when he continued his career as a commercial traveler by going to St. Louis in the interest of Adolph Glazier & Company, dealers in white goods. While with this house, his territory comprised Texas, Oklahoma and Indian Territory, and his combined experience gave him a broad outlook over a very important field of the Southwest.

In 1905, Mr. Bennett located in the progressive and virile city of Oklahoma, and he at once became a stalwart figure in its many activities. He organized and incorporated the Bennett-Sherman Realty Company, of which he has been president from the first. Although primarily devoted to real estate and insurance, the business of the company has been conducted along the broadest lines, and has included the promotion of many large enterprises and industries, such as the Max Hahn Packing Company and the Pintch Compressing Company. Through the individual endeavors of Mr. Bennett and the platting, sale and donation of city real estate many projects have been centered in Oklahoma City and redounded to its substantial growth as well as the prosperity of its citizens, so that while furthering his own interest to a noteworthy extent, at the same time he has been a public benefactor. Mr. Bennett married Miss Ethel Cavanaugh, of Dallas, Texas, and they have two daughters, Muriel and Frances.


HE is one of the ablest young lawyers in Oklahoma. He has been engaged in the practice of law in Oklahoma City since August, 1902. He is a member of the firm of Burwell, Crockett & Johnson, who have an extensive practice, with well equipped offices in the Lee Building.

Mr. Johnson was born in Sweden, coming to the United States when he was eighteen years of age. He graduated in the law department of the University of Texas in 1901, with the degree of Bachelor of Laws. He is affiliated with the Masons, Odd Fellows and Elks, and is a member of the India Temple, and of the Oklahoma Consistory.

In 1905, Mr. Johnson was married to Miss Mary Milner, daughter of M. C. Milner, one of the pioneer business men and capitalists of Oklahoma City. Mr. Johnson takes an active interest in civic affairs, and is president of the Board of Trustees of the Carnegie Public Library.


Prominent among the most active, popular and successful educators of Oklahoma is Dr. James A. McLauchlin, president of the Central State Normal at Edmond, Oklahoma. Inheriting from his parents a healthy mental and moral constitution, and being endowed by nature with scholarly tastes and ambitions, he has ever been a diligent and conscientious student, and is eminently fitted for the important and responsible position which he is now filling. A son of the late John C. McLauchlin, he was born June 15, 1867, in Wadesboro, Anson County, North Carolina, of sturdy and thrifty Scotch ancestry.
The Doctor's paternal grandfather, Duncan McLauchlin, was born in Argyleshire, Scotland, and, with his wife, Katherine McLauchlin immigrated to this country, settling in Cumberland County, North Carolina. Obtaining large tracts of land in that county, he became closely identified with several of the industries of that part of the state, taking an especial interest in the development of the turpentine industry. In politics, he belonged to the old Whig party. Both he and his wife, true to the religious faith in which they were brought up, were strict Presbyterians. They were the parents of six children, as follows: Neill D., who served as a Confederate soldier throughout the Civil war; John Calvin, the Doctor's father; Sarah Jane (Holt), William A., who died while in the Confederate service; Benjamin, also died while serving as a soldier in the Confederate army; and Katherine Ann.

John Calvin McLauchlin was a life-long resident of North Carolina, and died at his home in Wadesboro, May 24, 1906. He graduated from the University of North Carolina in 1857, after taking the regular A. B. course. He served in the late Civil war as captain of Company "K," Pee Dee Wild Cats, Twenty-Sixth North Carolina Regiment. He was wounded at Malvern Hill during the seven days' fight; and again at Gettysburg, this time losing his left thumb and, for a time, the use of his left hand. His regiment entered the battle-field at Gettysburg on the first day with about eight hundred men, and came out of the third day's fight with scarcely one hundred men, after having made the charge with Col. Pickett up the slope of Cemetery Ridge. At the close of the war in 1865, he moved to Wadesboro and engaged in the mercantile business. On February 18, 1863, he was united in marriage to Miss Mary Elizabeth Caraway, who for twenty-nine years shared with him his joys and sorrows. Nine children were the fruit of this union, five of whom still live: James A., the subject of this sketch; Katherine, wife of B. G. Covington; Duncan, foreman of a newspaper in Wadesboro, North Carolina; John E., advertising manager of the Daily Georgian, of Atlanta, Georgia; and Wilfred C., principal of the Darlington, South Carolina, High School. In writing the obituary of the late Captain John C. McLauchlin, Judge R. T. Bennett said: "He came to Anson County to teach our youth and lead them along the road to culture. His success was immediate; he grew upon the people; his full stature in outline was made manifest, and he became an inspiration to many. In 1874, he was elected clerk of superior court and judge of probate and held the office for twenty-eight years. No man ever knew him derelict of speech, action or conduct. Such was his towardliness to friends, that his words and actions became living things, immortal things, walking about in their hearts. No despisements took refuge in his clear soul. His habits were as regular as the sun. His second wife, a lady of many graces, survives him. His children are rich in accomplishments of mind and heart. He will live in his labors begun, prosecuted and ended here." Captain McLauchlin was a life-long Democrat, a zealous member of the Masonic fraternity, and a ruling elder in the Presbyterian Church, having represented his church on several occasions as commissioner to the General Assembly.

Being graduated from the public schools of Wadesboro, James A. McLauchlin entered Davidson College, in Davidson, North Carolina, and was there graduated with the degree of A. B., in 1887, his average during the four years that he was in that institution being ninety-seven and one-half. Taking a postgraduate course in the same college in 1894, he was awarded the degree of A. M. A fine student, standing as leader in his class, he received commendations from his instructors, and was heartily recommended by the president of the college for the professional work in which he intended to engage, that of a teacher. Since his graduation, the doctor has taken a very prominent part in educational work, having served as conductor or instructor in twelve different Normal Institutes held in his native state, Texas or Oklahoma. He has added much to his efficiency as an educator since entering upon his professional career by taking a post-graduate course at the University of Chicago, and doing summer Normal work at the University of North Carolina. He holds first grade certificates for Kansas, averaging ninety-seven; for North Carolina, averaging one hundred; and for Oklahoma, averaging ninety-nine and four-sevenths, this being the highest average ever made in Greer County, Oklahoma, and as far as known, the highest in the state. He holds permanent certificates for the states of Texas and Oklahoma, and in 1900 King College, Tennessee, conferred upon him the honorary degree of Doctor of Literature.

Dr. McLauchlin served in public school work four years in Kansas and five years in his native state and those whom he served have given him full and hearty endorsement of his work both as teacher and citizen. For seven years he was Professor of Mathematics at Austin College, Texas, during which time his salary was twice increased, and he had been elected for the eighth year and had served through the summer term when he accepted the superintendency of the Mangum Public Schools. This change as well as each of the other changes referred to, was a distinct promotion, especially in the matter of salary. Dr. McLauchlin reorganized the school system at Mangum and so improved the schools during his four years of service that the public schools of Mangum are not surpassed in efficiency by those of any other city in the state. With a two-year kindergarten course, primary, grammar school and high school courses the graduates from which enter the university of the state without examination; with modern school buildings of the most approved architecture and surrounded with beautiful lawns adorned with trees and flowers; with every department properly equipped for its work, there being well furnished laboratories, maps, globes, charts, measures, weights, drawing models, etc., and with special apparatus for teaching geometry, geography, physiology, zoology, agriculture and physics,-with all these evidences of progress, the citizens of Mangum have great reason to be proud of their public schools. In these four years, Dr. McLauchlin secured such increases in the salaries of the Mangum teachers that for the spring term of 1908, the average salaries paid were the highest in Oklahoma and the cost per pupil was the lowest of any city in the state. The officers and members of the Mangum Board of Education, who elected Dr. McLauchlin in 1904, served with him for four years and were re-elected for the fifth time; this being the highest possible tribute to the members of the board and to the superintendent. His tireless efforts and efficient work to promote and advance the educational standing of the Mangum schools, and his faithful though modest service in the interest of the Democratic party had much to do with his being elected by the Board of Regents to his present position as President of the Central State Normal at Edmond, the largest and most important educational institution in Oklahoma. If we may judge by the energy and wisdom with which Dr. McLauchlin has taken hold of his new work, it may be said, without a doubt that he is the right man in the right place.

In 1888, in North Carolina, Dr. McLauchlin married Frances E. Tillman, who was born in that state in 1870, a daughter of Dr. David C. Tillman, and a cousin of Senator Tillman, of South Carolina. Dr. Tillman was a skillful physician and surgeon and served during the Civil war in the Confederate army. He was a stanch Democrat, a member of the Masonic fraternity, and died in 1903. His wife and eight children survive him, as follows: Frederick S., farming on the old homestead; Frances E., wife of Dr. McLauchlin; Arnold, a successful commercial salesman; Elizabeth, wife of Hon. J. W. Stitt, of Fort Worth, Texas; William L., a merchant: James E., a farmer: Richard H., an electrical engineer in New York; and Rosa. Dr. and Mrs. McLauchlin are the parents of five children: Anna, born in 188Q: Katherine, born in 1895; John Calvin, born in 1898; Rosamond, born in 1900; and Frances, born in 1906. Both the Doctor and Mrs. McLauchlin are members of the Presbyterian Church. He has been an elder in that church ever since he was twenty-one years of age. He served both as ruling elder and as clerk of the session at Meriden, Kansas; Wadesboro, North Carolina; Sherman, Texas; and at Mangum, Oklahoma. He is a member of the Beta Theta Pi college fraternity and like his father is an enthusiastic Mason. He is a member of the Knights of Pythias, the Woodmen of the World, the Modern Woodmen, and the Fraternal Union of America. He also carries insurance in four leading old line companies. Besides being an educator, he enters heartily upon his duties as a citizen, and is a successful business man, having acquired a large landed property.


Edmond, though now a town of several thousand inhabitants, with business blocks, banks, industries and other institutions, began its existence at the time of the opening in April, 1889, with four original settlers. These four pioneers were the following: Colonel E. B. Townsend, J. D. Turner, Wheeler Turner, and Hardy C. Anglea. These men started at the Kickapoo line, and riding on horseback, reached the site of Edmond at 1:40 p. m. of the opening day. The southeast quarter of section 35, adjoining the town on the south, and now being developed for city residence purposes, was homesteaded by Mr. Anglea, who lived here ever since the opening and was an active factor in the progress of Edmond.

Mr. Anglea was in the live-stock business during the first years of his residence at Edmond. In 1898 he became actively connected with the real estate business, and was instrumental in bringing many settlers to this country, where they have found and made prosperous homesteads. His brother, J. M. Anglea, is cashier of the First National Bank of Edmond. Mr. Anglea was one of the influential Democrats of the county, having been chairman and delegate in many conventions, and also acted as campaign manager.

Mr. Anglea was identified with the Oklahoma country before its opening to settlement, having been appointed, in 1888, superintendent of the Indian farm for the Ponca Indians, near White Eagle, in what later became Oklahoma Territory. He held that position until the opening. Mr. Anglea was born at Castalian Springs, Sumner County, Tennessee, in 1860, son of W. R. and Martha (Cryer) Anglea, both representing old and well known families of Tennessee. The paternal ancestors originally lived in Virginia. On his mother's side, Mr. Anglea was grandson of Rev. Hardy M. Cryer, who was one of the ablest ministers in the early history of the Methodist church in Tennessee. Mr. Anglea had in his possession some treasured letters that were written to his grandfather by Andrew Jackson, and it was owing to the advice and influence of "Old Hickory" that the former entered the ministry.

Having been reared and educated in his native county, Mr. Anglea, in 1883, was given a position with Captain Bates of Tennessee, brother of Governor Bates, in the work of surveying and constructing the first street railroad at El Paso, Texas, of which work Captain Bates was then in charge. Following this, for two years, Mr. Anglea was in the railroad train service between El Paso and the City of Mexico, and shortly afterward came to Oklahoma. Mr. Anglea's first wife was Miss Daisy Collier of Sumner County, Tennessee, who died at Edmond in 1895, leaving two children, Robert and Hardy C., Jr. He afterwards married Miss Eva Link, of Moberly, Missouri. They had one son, William K. Mr. Anglea died October 26, 1907.


At the opening of the territory in 1889, when the town of Edmond was established on the line of the Santa Fe road some miles north of Oklahoma City, a banking enterprise was also founded, called the Bank of Edmond. In 1893 the People's Bank was established, and after going along for some years these two were consolidated, in 1898, and in 1902 a national bank charter was obtained and the present First National Bank of Edmond established. The First National has capital stock of $25,000, and at this writing the surplus is $5,000, while its deposits are over a hundred thousand dollars. It is a sound institution, with capable men as its officers and directors, and has exerted a beneficial influence in the business of a large community.

The president is William S. Patten, whose ability as a financier has been tested by residence and business activity in the northern part of Oklahoma County since the early years of territorial history. He was cashier of the former consolidated bank, and when the national charter was taken out was elected president. His associates in the bank are J. W. Howard, vice-president; John M. Anglea, cashier. Mr. Patten is also a director of the Bank of Arcadia, and has many business interests in Oklahoma County. As a member of the younger set of enterprising and public-spirited business men who are making Oklahoma a great state, Mr. Patten's training and ability fit him for the responsible position he now occupies. Born at Sandwich, DeKalb County, Illinois, he was reared on his father's farm, his father being one of the most prominent stockmen of that part of the state, and besides being a pioneer settler was also a pioneer in the breeding of short-horn cattle. William S. Patten has also been identified with the stock business for several years in Oklahoma, and began his career in that line. After getting his education at Sandwich, he went to Story county, Iowa, and though only a boy in years engaged in the stock business. On taking up his residence in Oklahoma in 1891, he homesteaded a quarter section near Edmond. Mr. Patten's wife is Erma (Howard) Patten. They have two children, William Howard and Mabel Erma.


In the country at large much interest was aroused by the fact that Oklahoma had chosen a blind senator to represent the new state at Washington. A blind orator in the upper house was a distinction that no other state could share. But when the blind senator first engaged in debate with some of the veteran leaders of the senate, and suffered no disparagement in logical statement and skill of pointed repartee in comparison with his colleague, this interest was heightened to surprise and admiration, with the result that in the first session Senator Gore acquired a position of respected influence in the legislative chamber noted for its conservatism and observance of precedents. At home Senator Gore's ability has been well known for several years, and it seemed a well merited honor that he should be chosen to the first rank of officials who represent the new state.

Thomas Pryor Gore is a Mississippian by birth, and less than forty years of age, so that he is among the junior members of the senate. Born in Webster county, Mississippi, December 10, 1870, a son of Thomas Madison and Carrie Elizabeth (Wingo) Gore, he met his first physical misfortune when a child of eight years, losing his left eye by being accidentally struck with a stick by a playmate. Three years later an arrow from a cross-bow pierced the other eye, and since that time, without the priceless gift of sight, has attained position far in advance of average attainment. Of a studious nature, he acquired knowledge by having others read to him, and depended on a wonderfully retentive memory and active mind to remold his knowledge for his practical use. At the age of twenty he was graduated from the normal school, at Walthall, Mississippi, and in 1892 received the degree of B. LL. from the Cumberland University, Tennessee, and was admitted to the bar the same year. He had been a school teacher during 1890-91, and before he was twenty-one years old had been nominated for the state legislature, his minority preventing him from conducting an active campaign for the office. After practicing law in Mississippi, he moved to Texas in 1895, where he joined the Populist political movement and at once took a leading part. He was a delegate to the national Populist convention at St. Louis in 1896, and in 1898 was nominated by the sixth Texas district as candidate for Congress, being defeated. With the decline of the Populist movement and the incorporation of many of its principles and personal adherents in the Democratic Party, Mr. Gore became a Democrat in 1899, and in 1900 campaigned, as the blind orator, in South Dakota and other states, and repeated this party work in the campaign of 1904. Mr. Gore moved to Oklahoma at the time of the Kiowa-Comanche opening in 1901, and has lived in Lawton. He was elected and served in the territorial council during 1902-05, and following a successful campaign for the United States senatorship in the summer of 1907 was elected by the first legislature of Oklahoma in November. Senator Gore married at Palestine, Texas, December 27, 1900, Miss Nina Kay.


At the opening of the Kiowa and Comanche reservation on August 6, 1901, and the founding of the town of Lawton which received its birth the same day, hundreds participated in those stirring initial events who never made more than a temporary impression on the life and affairs of the new country. With equal truth it may be said that among those who rode into Lawton that August day were some men who from that time to this have never ceased for a single day to be active, energetic factors in civic or business life.

A town of tents one day had become a well organized civic community almost the day after, and within a few months all the important activities and institutions of a populous center were well established in Lawton. But it may be readily perceived that such rapid development required organizers, men of initiative, of great public spirit, unselfishly devoted to the public good. Lawton fortunately had several such. But when the historical inquirer turns his questions this way, the citizens usually have a name to head the list-Frank McMaster. Among other things, Mr. McMaster is identified with the foundation of a public school system in Lawton. He was first president of the school board, and, going about his duties with great energy and without regard for his own time and expense, he had constructed within a very short time three wooden school buildings in which the public school system was inaugurated, and within sixty days there were twelve hundred pupils occupying modern furniture. He was also a member of the first board of county commissioners.

While Mr. McMaster belongs in peculiar and intimate relation to Lawton, he has been an Oklahoman since the first opening day, and what he has done and what he has been in the subsequent while are features of Oklahoma history that cannot be confined to any one locality. In another chapter it, is related how he came to Oklahoma City on the opening day and at once established a daily paper, the Daily Gazette, which he Conducted for a little over five years.

His career has been varied, eventful and spiced with the ardor, the independence and forcefulness of his own character and temperament, from boyhood up. Born in Cook County, Illinois, in what is now within the city limits of Chicago, in 1842, he was reared and educated in that city, and for a year or so before the war gained a dual experience in newspaper work and in studying law. He was in Chicago at the time of the political excitement over the first campaign and election of Lincoln and got a first-hand knowledge of noted men and events of the time. The breaking out of the Civil war caused him to enlist at Chicago, and his record as a soldier throughout that conflict was marked by bravery and efficiency. He was a member of Company G, 52d Illinois Infantry, First Brigade, Second Division, Left Wing, 16th Army Corps, Army of the Tennessee, and was first Post Commander of Grant Post, G. A. R., Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. On coming out of the army he resumed newspaper work and in a short time was admitted to the bar. His examination was conducted before the Supreme Court at Ottawa, one of the members of the court being Judge Sidney Breese, one of the most noted jurists of Illinois. For a time he practiced law in Kane county, Illinois. It is of interest as showing his varied knowledge of men and affairs that he was connected as reporter with the old Chicago Times during the early career of Wilbur F. Story, and he was connected with that paper at the time it was suppressed by order of General Burnside, the same day that Abraham Lincoln was buried at Springfield. A few years later he became editor and owner of the Quincy Herald.

From Illinois his next field of experience was in the west, during the latter sixties and early seventies, and he participated in some of the exciting history recorded there about the time the Pacific railroads were pushing toward Colorado and the Pacific coast. Among his numerous claims to distinction is the fact that he was one of the founders of the town of Gunnison, Colorado. He owned the original townsite and during the boom days effected enormous sales of town lots. Mr. McMaster, as may be judged from what has been told, is a pioneer, and as such his name is mentioned at the outset of the history of various localities and enterprises. During a period while he was living in Denver, he was one of the attorneys for the Denver & Rio Grande Railroad, then in course of construction, and as such was an actor in some of the contests over rights of way with other companies, from each of which might be woven a story of more than ordinary interest. Later he had a law office in Kansas City. But his pioneer spirit has caused many interruptions in his legal career, and his desire to be abreast of the advance of civilization into new countries led him to Oklahoma when it was opened, and he has been identified with the territory ever since. After leaving the management of the Oklahoma City Gazette he practiced law there until the Lawton opening, and that has also been his active profession in Lawton.
This Oklahoma lawyer and pioneer is essentially of the militant type, original and independent in his intellectual equipment, has principles and upholds them fearlessly. His enemies say he is hard and bitter in his combats, whether as a newspaper writer, as a public speaker or as a lawyer. But it is probably more just to say that he is such a man as can never "trim" his views to conform to public opinion, and prefers to maintain his own attitude of thought rather than take the usual groove merely for the sake of being agreeable. Though a lifelong Democrat, he found, on coming to the territory, that he was out of sympathy with the Democrats of Oklahoma, and in his publications he was a severe critic of the Democratic as well as the Republican parties. He has been prominent in some of the legal and political struggles since the opening in 1889. After leaving the Daily Gazette he published, for several years, a monthly, McMaster's Magazine, which gained a large clientage of readers, and was noted for the incisive, crisp and original articles, many of them being documents of historical interest for Oklahoma.


Among that worthy host of pioneer citizens of Lawton, who located here on the opening day and have since entered so heartily and energetically into community affairs-that some share of the credit for the building of the city and the development of the surrounding country belongs to each one of them, may be mentioned the present county surveyor of Comanche county, Samuel A. Joyner, who was elected to that office at the regular election in the fall of 1902, on the Democratic ticket, being re-elected in 1904 and 1906, has surveyed and mapped Comanche county until he is more thoroughly familiar with this important part of Oklahoma than any other man. His work in the office has been of essential importance to the land development of the county.

Mr. Joyner has been engaged in surveying and civil engineering for about twenty years and is thoroughly acquainted with the southwest. Born in 1860 on a plantation nine miles from Little Rock, Arkansas, where he was reared, he had come to Texas in young manhood and for three years lived in Austin, San Antonio and other portions of southwest Texas. His parents had been pioneers of Arkansas. His father, Thomas A. Joyner, a native of North Carolina, had come to Pulaski County, Arkansas, about 1845, and his mother, Louisa (Douglas) Joyner, daughter of John Douglas, was of still earlier residence in Arkansas. From Texas, where he spent the years from 1884 to 1888, Mr. Joyner went to New Mexico, and was a druggist in Roswell until ill health compelled him to seek outdoor vocations. With that he began his connection with surveying and engineering, and for a time was with the forces that built the Santa Fe line through New Mexico. For the most part, however, he worked independently as a general surveyor. He was a pioneer of Chaves County; having crossed the Texas plains to that region when the nearest railroad was two hundred miles away and before beginning had been made of the irrigation that now makes that valley famously productive. A citizen of New Mexico for fifteen years, he became well known and took some part in public affairs, serving during the winter of 1896-97 as journal clerk of the senate. At Lawton, Mr. Joyner is a past chancellor commander of the Knights of Pythias. He has two children: Iwilla is the daughter of his first wife, who before her marriage was Miss Ray Armstrong. By his present wife, Pauline (Bingham) Joyner, who was born in Illinois, he has one child, Loumeda. Mrs. Joyner has a daughter, Dorothy, by former marriage.


The seventeenth senatorial district comprises the counties of Comanche, Stephens and Jefferson, a considerable portion of southwest Oklahoma and one of the richest agricultural areas of the state. At the Democratic primaries, June 10, 1907, J. Elmer Thomas, a prominent young lawyer of Lawton and a resident of Comanche county since the opening of the country, was nominated for the first senator from this district, and in the succeeding November was elected.

In after years an increasing historical interest will be evinced in the principles for which the members of the first state legislature avowed their support, and which, aside from the personality of the candidate, have been the vital facts in the recent campaign. The principal planks in Mr. Thomas' platform were the following: Separate schools, coaches and waiting rooms for the colored race; uniform system of public highways; laws against the consolidation of firms and corporations into trusts and monopolies; ample power to railroad commission to regulate rates and prevent discrimination; strictest economy in expenditure of public money; immediate sale of school lands (lessee to have preference right of purchase) on long time at low rate of interest; establishment of two state penitentiaries, one for long time, hardened criminals, and the other, a reformatory for short-time prisoners, the latter to be located if possible in the Wichita mountains, where prison labor may be used for cutting stone for state buildings and preparing ballast for public roads; free text books for public schools and compulsory attendance.

Senator Thomas, who will have an active part in the work of the first legislature, and as an able lawyer will assist in the enactment of a new civil and criminal code to conform with the new constitution, is thoroughly qualified for these duties both by talents and training. Born in 1876, on a farm near Greencastle, Putman County, Indiana, he has been largely identified with the interests of the soil both by residence and occupation throughout his career, having spent the first twenty-four years of his life on his father's farm. At the age of sixteen he secured a license to teach school, and after teaching three terms entered college, where he was able to remain by working outside, keeping books, running a boarding club, etc. Graduating from the Central Normal College of Danville, Indiana, in 1897, he also got a year's scholarship in DePauw University by winning an oratorical contest, and was graduated from DePauw with the class of 1900. As a public speaker, Mr. Thomas has a fame dating from college days. In 1899 he represented his university on the debating team against the University of Indianapolis, and in the campaign of 1896, young as he was, he made many speeches for William J. Bryan, and in both the following presidential campaigns he advocated both the principles and the personality of Mr. Byran. His address, "The Philosophy of Reform," delivered before his fellow alumni in 1906, was later republished and used as a part of his campaign literature, its main declarations being still expressive of his attitude as a candidate and those upon which he based his strength with the people.
Soon after graduation from the university, Mr. Thomas came to Oklahoma, in October, 1900, and when the Kiowa-Comanche country was opened in August, 1901, became a resident of the county and the city of Lawton, where he has practiced law. He is considered a successful man, whether in law, business or politics, and the interest in his personal career is enhanced by the fact that he has made his success through his own efforts since he was a boy.


The Lawton Engineer Corps, which in point of efficiency has a foremost ranking not alone in the Oklahoma National Guard but in similar branches of service throughout the country, has been captained during the last four years by Frank Ben King, of Lawton, a young man who has made a distinguished record in military science and as a military officer in the engineering corps. His connection with military affairs covers all the period of his life since coming of, age, and comprises a full and eventful career.

Born at Ashton, Lee County, Illinois, in 1878, Captain King, after receiving some of his early schooling at Aurora, was brought west to Oberlin, Kansas, when seven years old, and there continued his education, supplemented by two years in the high school at Kansas City. Moving to Arkansas with his father in 1898, while the Spanish-American war was in progress he first entered military life, enlisting on June 30th, at Dardanelle, as a private in the Second Arkansas Infantry, U. S. V. Though his term of enlistment was spent at Chickamauga Park and Anniston, Alabama, until he was mustered out February 25, 1899, he thereby acquired the taste for military affairs and displayed aptitudes for military science that really formed his subsequent career. He soon organized a company of infantry in the National Guard of Arkansas, and was elected its captain in 1901. In September of that year he joined his father who had located at Lawton only a few weeks after the founding of the town, and from this point as a residence and the center of his civil life, he has continued his interest in military matters. June 30, 1903, he was commissioned first lieutenant of the Lawton Engineer Corps, Oklahoma National Guard, which he had organized, and the following August 4th was promoted to captain of this organization, the position that he still holds.

Ever since he first joined the army in 1898 Captain King has displayed the highest efficiency as a soldier and a military officer. He has been a close, constant and ambitions student, never being satisfied unless he excelled in every branch of military science that he took up, and the honors that have come to him are the result of his indefatigable energy in attending to his studies and his duties. His skill and ability were early recognized by the war department at Washington, and in the latter part of 1903 he was commissioned by the department to attend the garrison military school at Fort Sill, Oklahoma. During that winter he spent all his available time as a student in that school. In November, 1904, he received similar permission to attend a military school at Fort Crook, Nebraska, where in higher grades he made other brilliant records, being in competition with numerous captains and lieutenants who had received their education and training at West Point. As a student he has excelled in general military science and tactics, but his career has been particularly noted for success in engineering and marksmanship. He is considered one of the best marksmen in Oklahoma, and as an engineer has drafted some maps, particularly of the Fort Sill military reservation, that have received the highest commendation of the war department. As a tribute to his skill in marksmanship, he received a commission from the war department, through the Oklahoma National Guard, to coach the latter's team of marksmen in the National Shoot at Sea Girt, New Jersey, which took place in August and September, 1906.

In practical work Captain King and his company of engineers have rendered some valuable services to Oklahoma, a particular instance of which may be cited in connection with the cyclone at Snyder on May 7, 1905. In the midst of the distress and devastation wrought by this calamity, Captain King and the company of Lawton engineers arrived on the scene and immediately began to restore order out of chaos. The splendid services they rendered there in protecting life and property and in giving all possible comfort to the stricken people received the highest praise from the press and public. One of the brightest young military men in the southwest, it should be said to the credit of Captain King that he has made himself what he is through hard work and constant application. In the National Guard of Oklahoma he has had opportunities to receive promotion to higher rank than captain, but prefers to remain as at present, at the head of his excellent company of engineers at Lawton, where he considers he can do most good.

In civil life Captain King is assistant city engineer of Lawton, where he and his wife make their home. He married at Guthrie, July 29, 1906, Miss Alice Sherer of that city. Captain King is the son of Judge Andrew J. King, one of the best known citizens of Lawton, where he has been practicing law almost since the beginning of the town, and who was prominent in other places before he identified his interests with this new country.

Judge Andrew J. King was born at Rochelle. Ogle county. Illinois, 1848. Of New England stock, his grandparents settled at Conneaut, Ohio, in the early days before Ashtabula county was organized, and there both father and mother were born, reared and married, and in the latter thirties moved to Illinois, stopping first at Chicago, then at Aurora, and a little later locating at Rochelle, where their son, Andrew J., was born and reared. In 1864, though only sixteen, Andrew J. King joined the federal army at Dixon, Illinois, being received into one of the old Illinois regiments, the Forty-sixth. Being sent to New Orleans, he took part in the last great military engagements of the war in the gulf states, fighting in the battles at Spanish Fort, Fort Blakely and the general movements around Mobile bay that ended the war in that region. Following the close of the war and his return home, he completed his education and then studied law at Aurora, being admitted to the bar before the Illinois Supreme Court at Ottawa in 1882. After practicing for a time at Aurora, he moved to western Kansas in 1885 and for nine years lived and practiced at Oberlin, Decatur County. Other places at which he engaged in practice before coming to Oklahoma were Kansas City, for two years, and at Dardanelle and Ola in Arkansas, where he was located from 1898 until taking up a permanent residence at Lawton in September, 1901, soon after the founding of the town. Judge King married, April 26, 1871, Miss Lydia E. Gilbert, a native of Illinois. At her death in 1898 she left two children: Mrs. Mina K. Graves, who now lives at Walters, Oklahoma; and Captain Frank Ben. Judge King has since married Miss Mary L. Kyle, a native of Arkansas, and they have a daughter, Maurine King.

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