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The History of Oklahoma Biographies Vol. II
by Luther B. Hill
Page 6


In 1904 Dr. George H. Bradford, who had gained distinction as a church organizer and builder in Methodist churches in St. Joseph and Kansas City, Missouri, was chosen chancellor of Epworth University. An executive of high ideals, a practical and determined worker in religious and educational fields, he at once directed his energies to building up the school which had been founded the preceding year, and the results of his administration are a permanent foundation for a university that should always keep a distinctive and leading position among educational institutions of the southwest. It should be emphasized, in order to give Epworth its proper distinction, that it is a university in fact as well as in name, embracing departments in all branches of learning, and while some of these are still in their formative period, the university will eventually, when the chancellor's ambitious but perfectly feasible plans are carried out, afford as high facilities for universal education and culture as any of the higher institutions of learning.

Epworth University is located in a commanding position in the northwest part of the city, at the north end of Classen Boulevard, between Seventeenth and Nineteenth streets, the large campus embracing fifty-two acres of this beautiful site. The main university building, which stands about the center of the campus, is a structure of classic design, with perfect fitness for its scholastic purposes. When the plans for the future of the university are consummated, a total of thirty-eight buildings will occupy this campus. It is a cherished object of Dr. Bradford's ambition, toward which he is bending every effort, to erect one new building a year for the next fifteen years.

These extensive plans for the university are in no wise out of keeping with the assured future growth of the new state of Oklahoma, and in fact are quite in harmony with the magnificent material achievements of the territory during the past two decades. The spirit of the university, like that of the new state, is one of growth and progress. The college colors, blue and gray, are probably the only college colors in the United States that have a special significance - meaning a commingling of the blue and the gray and their descendants in a vigorous new commonwealth where there is no sectionalism. This is a happy sentiment, and effectively represents the spirit of Oklahoma's people and institutions. Epworth University further occupies a unique position in this respect, that it was founded and is fostered by both the North and the South branches of the Methodist church.

Concerning the courses offered by the university, little need be said since the rapid growth of the institution is bringing about improvements and increased facilities each year. However, there are already established on a firm basis and in successful operation, departments of medicine, law, pharmacy, civil engineering, a school of fine arts, and others, besides the regular academic courses.
Dr. Bradford's ambitions and life work are centered on carrying out these ambitious plans for Epworth, and his youth, his vigor and his broad policies promise him final success. George H. Bradford was born at Morrisonville, Christian county, Illinois, in 1871. His parents are still living on the farm where he grew to manhood. His collegiate education was begun in the Illinois Wesleyan University at Bloomington, and he finished at the Missouri Wesleyan University with the degree of A. B., and he pursued post-graduate and theological studies in the Denver University, where he received the degree of Bachelor of Sacred Theology and Bachelor in Oratory, his being the first degree issued by this university, and later the honorary degree of D. D. While in the university at Denver he joined the Methodist conference of Colorado, and undertook university settlement work at what was called the Eighth Street Mission. For a time he lived among the poorer classes of the city and devoted himself to the modern philanthropy that has been so effective in relieving the social distress of the very poor and unfortunate. From Denver he went to St. Joseph, Missouri, to accept the pastorate of the Wesleyan church of that city, and during his pastorate exhibited his ability in church building by securing a fine new church for his congregation. At the Oakley Methodist church in Kansas City, which he next served as pastor, he repeated this success and left his congregation in a church home that cost $45,000 and is one of the best in the city. Dr. Bradford's interests extend into many spheres, and he has taken personal share in many activities outside of his regular work. While a student in Denver he participated in athletics, and for nine years took part in the football games of his schools. In Masonry he is a Knight Templar and has received the thirty-second degree. On the lecture platform he has had distinguished success, and much of his time is taken up by lecture appointments and ministerial engagements. At the session of the Oklahoma annual conference in October, 1907, he was elected a delegate to' the general conference at Baltimore in May, 1908, and was strongly endorsed as a candidate for bishop. As a citizen his influence has been felt in many directions on the life and affairs of Oklahoma City. Dr. Bradford married at Lamar, Missouri, Lillie Rutledge Thompson. They have a daughter, Lois Ruth Bradford.


In Durland's Addition, known today as one of the choicest and most attractive residence districts of the city of Oklahoma is represented the material success of one of Oklahoma City's original residents. Even the later residents of this city recall when this addition was nothing but unimproved land lying on the northeast side of the city. It was fine, elevated grounds, but had not yet been encroached upon by the growth of the town, nor included in that area where water works, sewers, street cars and other metropolitan features abound. Now, the addition is one of the most beautiful and aristocratic residence sections of the city, and contains property worth hundreds of thousands of dollars. The firm of Durland and Sites, consisting of Otto C. Durland and his brother-in-law, Charles P. Sites, has, at this writing, built thirty-five handsome homes in this section, costing from $2,000 to $5,000 each, and all have been sold to home owners. A certain standard has been maintained so that there are no cheap or flimsy buildings put up in this addition. Mr. Durland's own home at 615 East Fourth Street is one of the finest residences in this part of the city, and is supplied with every comfort, the surrounding grounds and buildings being one of the show places of the city.

Having begun with the present, and having mentioned these evidences of material fortune and accomplishment that any man may well be proud of, it is of still greater interest to the historian to go back and follow Mr. Durland's career briefly from a time when he possessed practically none of the world's goods. Like many other strong and sturdy men of the west, he has gone through periods of storm and stress, enduring more than usual vicissitudes, and even since coming to Oklahoma has had his patience and ability tested to the utmost. Born in 1844, in Jackson county, Indiana, where he was reared on a farm, he was only seventeen years old when he left home to enter the army, enlisting at Seymour, Indiana, in Company A. Fiftieth Indiana Infantry, in June, 1861, and his regiment being mustered into service the following October 8. From New Albany, Indiana, the regiment crossed the Ohio at Louisville, camping for the first winter at Camp Wickliffe, Kentucky, and the spring of the next year engaged in the taking of Bowling Green. From this time forward Mr. Durland saw continuous hard service throughout the States of Kentucky, Tennessee, Mississippi, Arkansas and Louisiana, fighting in numerous battles and skirmishes. To show how his regiment was depleted in men during the war, it may be stated that when they crossed the Ohio River in the fall of 1861 there were 1040 men in the regiment, and when they recrossed it on their way home in 1865 there were only 301. He was mustered out at Indianapolis in January, 1865.

After the war, farming in Clay County, Illinois, was his occupation for thirteen years, and he then lived a year and four months at Little Rock, Arkansas, and at the time of the Oklahoma opening had been farming and dairying for some years at Gainesville, Cooke County. Texas. He came into the territory from the southeast, and was one of the first arrivals at the site of Oklahoma City, reaching here at 2 o'clock in the afternoon of April 22. He started on the run from Choctaw City, sixteen and one-half miles east of town, with a party of ten, at exactly twelve o'clock, thus fulfilling the requirement of the federal provision that parties starting sooner than that hour would not have legal title to any land they might locate on. Mr. Durland's party brought a surveyor with them, and the quarter section selected by Mr. Durland then lay some distance to the northeast of the original limits of Oklahoma City, but has since been incorporated within the growing city. For some years this land was valuable only for its products, but when the tide turned in favor of Oklahoma City as the metropolis real estate values increased rapidly in all the adjoining country, and by meeting the requirements of the expanding city in furnishing a high-class residence district Mr. Durland has contributed much to the substantial improvement of the city. Mr. Durland married in Clay County, Illinois, in 1870, Miss Katie Sites. Their children are: Oliver C., who lives in North Dakota; James L., chief engineer in charge of the Southern Pacific terminals at Galveston, Texas; Charles Edward, who died in 1902, aged twenty-seven; William H., a civil engineer; Denison D., a civil engineer; Fred: Lizzie, wife of James O. Parrott; John Y. Despite adverse fortunes at various times in his earlier career, Mr. Durland was especially concerned to provide comforts and educational advantages for his children, and at the present time he has the satisfaction of knowing that his family has been well cared for and that he himself is past the period when actual hardships form a part of his life.


During 1906 the president of the Oklahoma City Chamber of Commerce was Isaac M. Holcomb, a citizen who in this and many other ways has been prominently identified with the growth and development of the city, his influence having been directed toward the realization of a clean and prosperous city. Mr. Holcomb is cashier of the Oklahoma City National Bank, with which he has been connected since its organization in 1903, at first as assistant cashier. As one of the group of men who direct the financial operations of the city, he has quickly come into prominence in Oklahoma City and has a large part to play in the future welfare of the city.

Mr. Holcomb is a lawyer by education, but has never practiced since locating in Oklahoma. Born in Jackson County, Kentucky, he received his education at the University of Kentucky and at Central Normal College, Danville, Indiana, where he graduated in the law course in 1896, being admitted to the bar in the same year. On coming to Oklahoma City in 1896 he engaged in teaching, and his work as an educator gives him a place in another chapter of this history. For three years he was principal of the Washington school and as superintendent of the city school system for two years affected results that still endure in the schools of the city. After leaving the city schools, he was deputy district clerk of the third judicial district one year. Aside from his business interests he is a popular lecturer on topics based on his experience and relations with young people in the formative period of their character.


A well known citizen, who took part in the opening of April 22, 1889, and in several other openings by which the original territory of Oklahoma has been expanded, is Charles G. Frost. He was living in Dallas, Texas, early in 1889, and came to Oklahoma City from Purcell as a starting point. With the exception of the absences occasioned by his participation in other openings he has been a resident of Oklahoma City throughout the subsequent years. For several years he was general agent in Oklahoma for several large breweries of Kansas City, St. Louis and Milwaukee. In 1898 he established the Crown Bottling Works at Sulphur Springs, Indian Territory, which is engaged in bottling for the wholesale trade the medicinal waters of Suphur Springs. Besides being an industrious and enterprising business man, he has been one of the public spirited citizens of Oklahoma City from its beginning, and has acquired valuable real estate in the city and is also owner of a nice farm.

Mr. Frost was born near Breslau, Silesia, Prussia, in December, 1858, was reared on a farm and learned the trade of brewer in Breslau. Mr. Frost saw three years' service in the Prussian army, being attached to the Twenty-second Silesian Regiment of Infantry, and for a greater part of his time served in the garrison at Fort Rastatt in the Grand Duchy of Baden. In 1883, at the age of twenty-four, and during the years preceding the Oklahoma opening was an industrious laborer at various employments in St. Louis, Chicago, St. Paul, and in the state of Texas. On June 30, T906, he married Miss Clara Schilling, of Oklahoma City, who is a native of his home city of Breslau. Their son, Paul Carl Frost, was born in Breslau in March, 1907, while the mother was on a visit to her old home.


THE ex-city treasurer and one of the well known real estate men, came to Oklahoma City on the opening day from West Texas, where he was also a pioneer citizen. Mr. Shields has had an unusually varied career even for an Oklahoman. Born in Frederick County, Maryland, in 1839, reared in that county and at Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, he enlisted at the latter place, when the war came on, in the Union army, being mustered into the Fifteenth Pennsylvania Cavalry at Carlisle. This independent regiment under the command of General Palmer was used largely in the detached service-participating in the battle of Antietam, and in numerous engagements in Tennessee and Georgia, among them Nashville, Resaca, Murfreesboro, Atlanta, etc.

At the close of his military service he attended Eastman's Business College at Poughkeepsie, New York, and also spent a short time at St. Joseph, Missouri. Two years after the war he permanently identified himself with the southwest by locating at Dallas, Texas. That was then a mere village on the banks of the Trinity, and no railroad had yet penetrated North Texas. About 1870 he moved out to what was then one of the outposts of civilization in Texas, to old Fort Griffin, in Shackleford County. As a government contractor and a cattleman he became intimately connected with the events and affairs of that interesting country during that most stirring period. Indian depredations, all the ups and downs of the cattle business, the wild life of the cattle range, are familiar pages in his book of experience. For a number of years he resided and was a prominent citizen of Albany, the county seat of Shackleford County.

Since April 22, 1889, Mr. Shields has had his permanent home in Oklahoma City, though he was absent four years, which he spent at Roswell, New Mexico, returning in the fall of 1906. At the time he went to New Mexico he was serving a second term as city treasurer of Oklahoma City, resigning from that position after two years of honorable service. He has been more or less identified with real estate business ever since coming to the territory and is now associated with his sons in that business. His oldest son, John W. Shields, has built up and promoted large real estate interests in Oklahoma City, having opened Shields' South Oklahoma Addition, consisting of 260 acres in the south part of the city, besides having other successful enterprises to his credit. Willis G. Shields is the other son who is connected with the firm. Mr. Shields' wife is even more of a Texas frontiersman than himself, since she was born on the Texas frontier, where both her father and grandfather met death at the hands of the Indians. Her maiden name was Martha A. Dobbs. The five children of their marriage were all born in Texas, namely: Nora Lee, John W., Willis Gay, Laura, Lou.


Some of the most interesting features of Oklahoma City's pioneer days center around the neighborhood of the Lee Hotel building. At number thirteen North Broadway was erected the first brick building in the town. In its basement was located the city jail, and the second floor was police headquarters. The rest of the building was occupied by Fred E. Sutton's agency for the Anheuser Busch Brewing Association, and of all who have at various times been identified with this locality Mr. Sutton bears the palm for permanent residence, this block of the city having been his business home ever since the first months of the town's existence, and for several years he has occupied his present office in the Lee Hotel building. He secured the agency for the Anheuser Busch Company on coming to Oklahoma, and after living at Guthrie one year, he has since been permanently connected with Oklahoma City's growing business affairs.

When Mr. Sutton reached Guthrie on the train from Arkansas City, on the great opening day, he possessed $25 in cash, owed a debt of $800 in St. Joseph, Missouri, and had a wife and two children to support. It will be to the lasting credit of Oklahoma and that character of its first settlers, that men so handicapped financially could engage in affairs and almost at once assume a position in the community dignified by useful labor and by fair rewards. Since the first years spent in getting a start, Mr. Sutton has become well known among the influential business circles of Oklahoma City. His special forte has consisted in securing outside capital for large building enterprises, which have been a very important factor in making this city the metropolis of the territory. Through his business associations with financiers in St. Louis and other cities he secured the capital for the building of the three big hotels of the city, the Lee, the Threadgill and the Saratoga, and his activity in the same direction may be counted upon for future undertakings of importance to the city.

Mr. Sutton, who is just in the prime of his powers, was born in Marshall, Michigan, in 1860, son of P. D. and Mary (Allen) Sutton. The parents, who now live in Kansas City, came west in 1869, locating in Atchison. The family lived on a farm near that place, but the father, being a railroad contractor, helped build the Atchison, Topeka & Santa Fe Railroad through Kansas. Fred Sutton lived at home till eighteen, and before moving to Oklahoma spent several years in St. Joseph, Missouri. In Oklahoma City he is well known outside business circles, especially in Masonic affairs, being prominent in York Rite Masonry and also a Shriner. He is a member of the Elks and other orders. As an active, energetic and public-spirited citizen he has contributed much to the permanent welfare of his city. He was a member of the first and second delegation that went to Washington in behalf of statehood.

While Mr. Sutton has been a member of the city school board and always interested in education, he gladly resigns to his wife the credit of having made an enduring impress on educational affairs of Oklahoma City, so that her name is inseparably linked with the early history of education here. Mrs. Jennie (Cox) McKeever, as her name was before becoming Mrs. Sutton, came from her home at Tonganoxie, Kansas, on Oklahoma's opening day, joined the host of boomers, and with an independence and courage that marked her as a true pioneer, took up a claim on the South Canadian river, in what is now Cleveland county, about twenty miles south of Oklahoma City. A dugout was her first home, and she gathered some children of the settlers about her and taught a school the first year. She taught the first school in Oklahoma City also, and a tent was the schoolhouse. At the same time she proved up her quarter section, met with unflinching fortitude the hardships of the early years of drought, was an example of womanly courage and self-reliance amid the disorganized conditions that prevailed during the first months, and her accomplishments were no small addition to the pioneer work by which Oklahoma became a seat of civilization. From the beginning she has taken an important part in the educational affairs of Oklahoma City, teaching in its schools for a number of years, and since her marriage to Mr. Sutton, which took place in 1895 she has been frequently employed by the school board for special work as teacher, her eminent qualifications as such being recognized by all. Mr. and Mrs. Sutton have four children: Edwin B., who is assistant United States bank examiner; Monte Cochran, teller in the Security National Bank, Oklahoma City; Laverne, wife of Dr. W. A. Aitken of Enid; and Inez. Mrs. Sutton's mother, Mrs. Mary Cox, was one of the matrons at the Indian school at Pawnee in the early days.


Who is now in the real estate business in Oklahoma City, having retired from the army some years ago, is one of the oldest military men who saw service in the southwestern country, and for a number of years his duties kept him in the old Indian Territory. His first service was at Fort Gibson, and after a few weeks he was transferred to Fort Arbuckle in the Chickasaw Nation. At that time he was nineteen years old, and yet had been commissioned (October 1, 1867) as second lieutenant of Company E, Sixth United States Infantry, in the regular army. He was born in November, 1848, in Louisville, Kentucky, and was reared and educated there, finishing his education in the Kentucky Military Institute at Frankfort.

When General B. F. Grierson selected the site of Fort Sill in 1868, Captain Jacob was in his company, and is now probably more familiar than any other man in Oklahoma with the facts connected with the founding of that historic military post. It was about that time that the soldiers were having trouble with the Arapahoe Indians and until Fort Sill was established old Fort Cobb was the nearest headquarters to the Cheyenne and Arapahoe reservations. From Fort Sill Captain Jacob went to Fort Supply in what is now Woodward County. Altogether he saw four years of service in Indian Territory during those early years. Fort Dodge, Kansas, was also one of his headquarters, and from there he was transferred to service in North Dakota, where he saw eight years campaigning in the Sioux country, his headquarters for seven years being Fort Buford. For five years in North Dakota he was in command of the Indian scouts. During the latter part of his career as an officer of the regular army he was in Colorado on service during the Ute uprising. He left the service at Fort Lyon, Colorado, in 1881, and returned to Louisville to engage in business, and for a time was a deputy U. S. marshal. At the outbreak of the Spanish-American war he received a commission from President McKinley as captain of Companv K, Eighth United States Volunteer Infantry. This regiment was organized and for some time was located at Fort Thomas, Kentucky, later at Chickamauga. It was mustered out March 6, 1899.

On March 19, 1906, Captain Jacob established his home and place of business in Oklahoma City, returning to a highly developed country which nearly forty years before he had known as an Indian country. He has a successful real estate and loan business, and is a man of well known prominence in the city. His wife before her marriage was Miss Louise Williams, of a family of prominence in Lexington, Kentucky. They have three children: Mrs. Louise Stewart, Richard T. and Harry C.


The first insurance commissioner of the state of Oklahoma, elected in September, 1907, is Thomas J. McComb, a well known life insurance man of Oklahoma City, who has been the resident general agent of the Franklin Life Insurance Company of Springfield, Illinois, since 1900. Because of his thorough knowledge of the insurance business, a deep student of actuarial science, and an expert in the technical side of the business, he was a natural choice for this important position, and his nomination, which came practically unsolicited, was a deserved tribute to his eminent fitness. In the relations of the new state to the insurance companies and the general subject of insurance-one of the most vital of modern problems in civics - Mr. McComb is in a position to be of splendid service to the state, and by electing him the people have shown complete confidence in his high standards of honesty and ability in the insurance business.

Mr. McComb is a native of the southwest, born at Kentuckytown, Grayson County, Texas, February 1, 1876, and a son of Dr. J. W. and Ida (Ray) McComb. The family has been prominent in Texas and elsewhere for several generations. His father, born in Missouri, came to Grayson county with his parents while he was a boy, became a physician in that county, and in 1882 moved with his family to Jacksboro, Jack county, Texas, where he still lives, actively engaged, as he has been for many years, in the practice of medicine. Ida (Ray) McComb, the mother, was born in that community of Grayson County which was originally settled by people from Kentucky and took its name from that source. To public life in Texas the McComb family has furnished several well known names: Dr. McComb's brother, Hon. John E. McComb, a lawyer of note, was United States district attorney for the eastern district of Texas during the first administration of President Cleveland, and was also on the Cleveland electoral ticket, receiving the highest vote thereon. Another brother of Dr. McComb, the late William P. McComb, was the representative of his district in the Texas state senate, and at the time of his death had practically received the nomination of his party for Congress.

Thomas J. McComb was trained for the profession of the law, which is an additional equipment for the work he now has in hand. Reared and educated at Jacksboro, Texas, he finished at the North Texas Baptist College at that place, and then taking up the study of law was admitted to the bar at Jacksboro in 1897, where he practiced a short time. His interest was soon directed to life insurance, and after becoming actively identified with it he gave up his law practice, and has since devoted all his energies to the business. The Franklin Life Insurance Company appointed him general agent for Oklahoma and Indian Territory in 1900, and in the same year he established his office and residence in Oklahoma City. In 1904 Mr. McComb organized the Life Underwriters Association of Oklahoma, and was president of that body continuously until the summer of 1907. From the first Mr. McComb has been interested in the technical side of insurance, as well as in the business-getting department, and is known in other states than Oklahoma because of numerous addresses he has delivered before conventions on this subject. By his marriage to Miss Lizzie Jackson of Brenham, Texas, Mr. McComb has four children: Louise Preston, Thomas Marvin, Ida Priscilla and Mildred Mae.


The present mayor of the beautiful suburb, Capitol Hill, is Henry C. Schilling, one of the charter citizens of Oklahoma territory, and a man of varied and successful experience in the business and public affairs of this region both before and since the territory was opened to settlement. He first became acquainted with the old Indian Territory in 1873 as a cowboy connected with one of the numerous outfits that grazed cattle on these ranges. For some time he drove cattle over the trails leading across the territory from Texas to the northern markets, and finally got into the cattle business for himself, with successful results. He bought cattle in North Texas, usually pastured them in the eastern part of Indian Territory near the Arkansas line, and drove them to market at Kansas City or other centers. In the course of his operations, he twice took cattle from Texas to Glasgow, Scotland, during the early years of the export trade in live stock. Kingman county, Kansas, was his headquarters for several years, and on the opening of Oklahoma Territory in 1889 became one of the original citizens of Guthrie, where he had the distinction of being elected a member of the first school board organized in the territory, and in that capacity he assisted in starting the first public school in Guthrie, which was the first school building in the territory. On the opening of the Sac and Fox reservation in 1892, he transferred his residence to Chandler, until the following year, when he took part in another opening, that of the Cherokee Strip, at which time he located at Perry. Since 1897 he has been a resident of Oklahoma City and vicinity. He was in the retail meat business for awhile, but success in real estate operations has gradually brought him into prominence in this business specialty. In 1902 he purchased the Boyd quarter section of land adjoining Oklahoma City on the southeast and adjoining the new suburb of Capitol Hill on the east, and divided it into town lots that rapidly grew in value with the advance of general real estate values and the extension of the city in this direction. Schilling's Addition, or East Capitol Hill, as it is variously known, is a corporate part of the town of Capitol Hill, and its beautiful situation, commanding a fine view of Oklahoma City and of the rich farming region lying to the south, makes this one of the attractive residence districts of the Greater Oklahoma City. Since his election as mayor of Capitol Hill in April, 1907, Mr. Schilling has been very industrious in improving- his town and administering its affairs. He was instrumental in building the first school house on East Capitol Hill. Having removed from Oklahoma City to a residence in his addition in 1906, he is retired from all business activities except those connected with his property interests and with his office.

Mr. Schilling has been identified with the southwest nearly all his life and is thoroughly western in spirit and in enterprise. He was born at Cardington, Morrow County, Ohio, in 1848, was reared and went to school there, living with an uncle after the death of his father. He had made several trips west before he was of age, and did not finish his schooling until he was past twenty-one, his last school being Oberlin College. From a busy and successful career, he has found time for other congenial activities. In the order of the Knights of Pythias he is one of the foremost members in Oklahoma, having been a member of the grand lodge of the territory for twelve years, and in 1907 was honored by being elected to the long term of grand trustee of the grand lodge for both Indian Territory and Oklahoma. He has done a great deal of appreciated work in this order, particularly in the way of lecturing and delivering the unwritten work. Mr. Schilling's wife was before her marriage Miss Lottie A. Young, a native of Ohio. They have two children: Mrs. Miriam Schilling Amburn and Moses Schilling.


With western Oklahoma producing the greater part of the broom corn grown in the United States, it is natural that some very extensive agencies should have been established to care for this valuable product. In Beaver county and at other points the annual crop is marketed in large quantities, and along the line of the Rock Island from El Reno west broom corn forms one of the important railroad shipments. For several years Thomas H. Lindley, of Oklahoma City, has given all his energy to the development of this important industry of Oklahoma, and is president and principal owner of the Oklahoma Broom Corn and Warehouse Company, which he organized to handle and promote the broom corn business. The company has warehouses at several towns west of El Reno, but its headquarters an most important interests are at Oklahoma City, where in 1906 Mr. Lindley established an extensive broom factory and warehouse on West Main street at Blackwelder avenue, occupying a large and substantial brick structure equipped with the best and most modern machinery for manufacturing brooms on a large scale. The plant and its allied interests give employment to a large number of workmen and has a capacity of 150 dozen brooms per day. Mr. Lindley's success in building up the industry has been a decided gain for the industrial activities of the city and at the same time has stimulated a valuable branch of agriculture in the new state.

Thomas H. Lindley was born in McLean County, Illinois, in 1865, being a member of an old established and prominent family of that county, where he was reared on a farm and lived until after he reached manhood. He lived in Iowa for several years, and in 1896 moved to Oklahoma Territory. He established a business at Custer City, in Custer County, which is the center of a large area of rich country, much of which at that time was given over to the cattle interests. Mr. Lindley was himself engaged on a large scale in the cattle business, having 37,000 acres under lease as pasture ground for his cattle. He was also identified with the financial history of Custer City, having established and owned the Citizens State Bank at that place, which he sold when he turned his attention exclusively to the broom corn business. Mr. Lindley was married in McLean County, Illinois, to Miss Josie Marshall of that county. They have seven children: Mattie J., Marshall H., Viola, Juanita, Linden, Era, and Lois.


The cotton industry in western Oklahoma, although now one of its principal agricultural resources, was stimulated and developed after the settlement of the country and the extension of railroad lines through the western counties. It is largely due to the energy and enterprise of experienced cotton growers from other localities that cotton became such a valuable factor in this part of the state. One of the men to whom much credit must be given for developing the industry is now a well known real estate owner and operator of Oklahoma City, Mr. James W. Team, whose interests in cotton growing along the western extension of the Choctaw Railroad have continued since the railroad was built. With a long experience as a successful cotton producer and operator in Mississippi, he came to western Oklahoma in 1901, and established his home and business headquarters at Foss (in what is now northern Washita county) before the railroad had been completed to that point. A pioneer of the country, he was likewise one of the first to undertake the cotton business on an extensive scale. He built gins at Foss and several other towns along the new railroad, and developed his business to large proportions, and in such a way that it benefited the entire tributary country. Many of the northern farmers who followed him into that section with the intention of continuing their farming according to northern methods were induced to grow cotton, and as a result this has become one of the richest cotton-growing region in the southwest.

James W. Team was born in the Kershaw district of South Carolina, in 1859, a son of James W. and Mollie (Broach) Team. The family has been prominent in the Carolinas for several generations. His great-grandfather, Adam Team, a Pennsylvania German, was a soldier during the Revolution and fought in the battles at King's Mountain and Cowpens. Mr. Team's father, who was born and reared in the Kershaw district, South Carolina, was a Confederate soldier who fought with distinction and was killed in the conflict between the states. This southern soldier's mother, Martha (Woods) Team, is still living in Kershaw County at the advanced age of ninety-eight. There is some interesting family history on the mother's side also. The Broach family is an old one in that section of South Carolina, and the mother's father was one of the early settlers and erected the first store at the town of Rockhill, South Carolina.

Soon after the war, in 1868, James W. Team accompanied his mother to Meridian, Mississippi, where he grew up, being thrown on his own resources at an early age, and was thoroughly trained for business pursuits, Meridian being an important commercial center and noted for its enterprise. His father during his lifetime was an extensive cotton planter, the son having been for a time established in the horse, harness and buggy business at Meridian and Jackson, Mississippi. In 1904, Mr. Team removed from western Oklahoma to Oklahoma City, and while still retaining most of his business interests in the west, now devotes a large share of his .attention to the real estate business, dealing largely in his own property. Among the large deals which he has promoted should be mentioned the East Grand avenue section for manufacturing and industrial purposes. He has become one of the representative, progressive and public-spirited citizens of Oklahoma City, thoroughly identified with all its best interests. Mr. Team was first married to Miss Bonnie Lockard, of a prominent family of Alabama, where she died. There were four children of their union: Mrs. Bonnie Belle, wife of Dr. S. W. Scales, of Starkville, Mississippi, (she is a graduate of Roanoke University, Virginia): Tames W., Edward L. and Robert B., now finishing their education at A. N. M. College, Mississippi. At Mobile, Alabama, Mr. Team was married to Miss Edith Batchelder, of Mason City, Iowa. They are parents of three children: Wilbur L., Earl L., and Leslie.

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