Stephens County, OK

World War I Military Bios Index 

BYRON L. ABERNETHY. A native of Missouri and a graduate of that State's educational system, Mr. Abernethy, having studied journalism at college, entered that profession immediately after his graduation. After having been connected for several years with the Associated Press, he came to Duncan, Stephens County, in 1926, and since then has been editor of the "Duncan Banner," a position which he has filled with much ability.

Byron L. Abernethy was born at Joplin, Missouri, June 13, 1899, a son of Elbert C. and Clarabel (Richardson) Abernethy. He is an only son, but has two sisters. His father, a native of Mississippi, is still a resident of Joplin, Missouri, where he is successfully engaged in the lumber business. His mother is a native of what at the time of her birth was known as Indian Territory, but is now the State of Oklahoma. Mr. Abernethy was educated in the public schools of Joplin, Missouri, and, after having graduated from the local high school, entered the University of Missouri, Columbia, Missouri, and there took up the study of journalism in that institution's school of journalism, graduating in 1921. He then became connected with the Associated Press, with which he remained for four years. In February 1926, he became owner and editor of the "Duncan Banner," which he has continued to hold since then and in which he has shown unusual ability. Largely as the result of his work, this newspaper has steadily increased its influence and standing and today is one of the leading papers published in this section of Oklahoma. Mr. Abernethy is a member of the Duncan Rotary Club.

Mr. Abernethy married, June 13, 1923, Jean Houston.
(Source: Oklahoma, A History of the State and Its People by Joseph B. Thoburn and Muriel H. Wright; Volume IV; Lewis Historical Publishing Company, Inc. New York, 1929; transcribed by Vicki Bryan)

ALEXANDER L. BRANCH. A pioneer farmer and stock dealer of the Indian Territory, Alexander L. Branch lived in the Comanche section of Oklahoma for many years, and became a leading figure in Comanche life and affairs. As the State developed, Mr. Branch extended his activities and at the time of his death was an important real estate dealer in this vicinity. He attained material success, but he never valued it except as a means of providing for his family and doing good. But his very success was an indication of the value of his services in the upbuilding of the State, and in his career he greatly advanced the welfare of this city.

Mr. Branch was born April 9, 1855, at Polk, Arkansas, and in that State grew to manhood, attending grammar and high schools, and a business college. While still young he entered upon a career as a farmer, engaging in agricultural pursuits for the entire first part of his life, and owning some hundred and sixty acres of land forty miles southwest of Russellville, Arkansas. While discharging the duties of life there as they came to him, Mr. Branch was on the alert for larger opportunities, and in August 1895, removed to the Indian Territory, where he leased five hundred acres of land at Comanche. Until 1907 he engaged in the cattle business, raising, buying, and selling stock, but at the end of that time he was forced to give up his lease, and subsequently purchased three hundred and twenty acres of land, to which he added until he brought his holdings up to five hundred acres. From that time he engaged in local real estate transactions, buying and selling many properties in the section. He was willing to back his faith in Comanche by many long-term investments, and in the prosperity of the community he shared. Mr. Branch's farm was within a short distance of a large producing oil field, and there is now one well producing on this property. The family has disposed of various leases at a handsome price, several of them on a royalty basis. Mr. Branch was active in business until the time of his death, winning wide reputation as an able and public-spirited citizen. "As a business man he was successful," wrote one who knew him well, "and so managed his business matters as to provide plentifully for his family, to leave them in good condition and circumstances. And there was never a suspicion of crooked dealings connected with any business transaction with which he had to do. I believe it can be truly said of him that he would rather have lost the chance of a fortune than to have been guilty of one act in business that would have caused the poor to suffer. And many were the times, as is well known, that he stood the Champion of the poor, protecting their interests and preventing them from being defrauded."

Mr. Branch was always interested in the progress of the section, and although a member of the Republican party, his support was assured for every worthy movement for advance and progress, irrespective of its source of origin. He was long affiliated, fraternally, with the Woodmen of the World, while he contributed generously to charitable and benevolent enterprises.

Mr. Branch was an ardent Christian and a devoted worker in his Master's cause. "He was baptized in Christ while a very young man about the age of twenty," to continue the previous quotation, "and tried to live in harmony with the convictions of truth and righteousness to the end. Much of his life was spent as an active member of the Church of Christ, and for several years he was the leading elder of the church near Comanche, at that time known as the Branch School House, the schoolhouse built on his farm and named after him. So earnest was he in his work that at one time almost every citizen of his community, from children to grey beards, were members of this church, which was one of the most active and efficient organizations in the West. But many things incidental to a new country had to be encountered - the transitory nature of the population, and the various schisms and troubles which arose - and finally the church went down. After that time he was not very active in church work, only meeting and associating with the church as circumstances would permit, when he was where there was an organization with which he could conscientiously work. He was very much opposed to the corruption of religion, and had no faith in bunglesome human ceremonials and hypocritical pretensions of would-be leaders. To those he was opposed, not to the teachings of the Bible and the pure and undefiled religion of Jesus Christ, which he always defended and practiced."

On March 6, 1883, in Arkansas, Alexander L. Branch married Ruth A. Freeman, daughter of Mose and Jane Freeman, of that State, where her father engaged in general mercantile pursuits. Mrs. Branch was always a loving and faithful companion to her husband, a constant source of aid and inspiration in all his work. Of their marriage eight children were born, five sons and three daughters, all of whom have married and have families, residing in Oklahoma: 1) Tilda Jane, married V. J. Young, and they have six children: Laura, Flora, Opal, Harley, Eva Mae, and Willie. Mr. and Mrs. Young reside in Western Texas. 2) Mose, married Daisy Cook, and they have three children: Hazel, Pauline, and Katherine. They reside in Empire, Oklahoma. 3) James P., resides in Comanche, Oklahoma; he married Sallie Watkins, and they have six children: Gladys, Velma, Clarence, Janice, Mozell, J. P., Jr. 4) William M., resides at Comanche, Oklahoma; married Nellie McMasters, and they have three children: Steve, Ruth, and Alex.
5) John W., resides at Comanche; he married Cletus Brown, and they have Cleo, Junior, and Betty Ann. 6) May, married O. L. Lester, and they reside in Barger, Texas. Their children: Lena, Kelsey Cora, and Odesil. 7) Albert, married, June 5, 1923, Hazel Durbin, and they reside in Comanche. Their children: Durbin, and Kelsey May. 8. Kelsey, married June 5, 1923, O. B. Ranes, and they reside in Comanche.

Mr. Branch's death occurred at his home on Friday, November 23, 1923, just after the midnight hour. It is fitting to conclude this record of his life with the following tribute to the value of his achievements and the noble spirit which actuated him in every phase of his career:
To do good was his religion-to help the needy, to assist the helpless, and to render what aid he could in every good cause and work. To build up schools, churches, aid society generally, lead and advise young men and women and help them keep in the straight and narrow path, these things were his delight. And in this respect he has left his foot prints on the sands of time- left them so that they can never be obliterated. He rests from his labors and his works do follow him.

A philosopher and a great man has fallen in Israel since A. L. Branch has been gathered to his fathers. He will be greatly missed by relatives and friends, but his example will long remain to help them in weathering the storms of this treacherous and uncertain sea of life. May God help us all so to live that when it is over with us, we can meet again where partings are no more.
(Source: Oklahoma, A History of the State and its People by Joseph B. Thoburn and Muriel H. Wright; Volume IV, Lewis Historical Publishing Company, Inc. New York 1929; transcribed by Vicki Bryan)


A lifelong resident of Oklahoma, James A. Brown, now deputy sheriff of Stephens County, has contributed to the upbuilding of the State through his useful and active career. He has held several important offices of various kinds, and in all of them has won an enviable reputation for honesty and efficiency.

Mr. Brown was born in Oklahoma, in what is now Pittsburg County, on January 18, 1880. He grew to manhood in the old days of the territory, receiving his education in the territorial schools, and later began his business career in the employ of J. J. McAlester, with whom he has since been connected.

Mr. Brown was always eager to advance and has won merited promotion in his work. In addition to this connection, however, he was early attracted to the field of public service, and has held many offices both in the county and State. For eight years he was deputy United States marshal, for two years was chief of police at Warenika, while for eight years he served as deputy sheriff at McAlester. In securing his services as deputy sheriff at Duncan, the people of the county have obtained an experienced and able official, who may safely be trusted with duties of the utmost importance, and in whose hands the public security is assured. Mr. Brown is active in various other phases of Duncan life. He is affiliated, fraternally, with Kiowa Lodge, No. 59, of the Independent Order of Odd Fellows, in which he has filled all the chairs.

Mr. Brown has been married twice: (first), in 1902, by which union he became the father of three children: D. C., Virgil, and John. Mrs. Brown died in 1917, and in 1927 Mr. Brown married (second) Mrs. Joy Mason Clure, who has one daughter by her first marriage, Allene, who lives at home. One son has been born of the second marriage, James, now two year old. Mrs. Brown is a graduate nurse.

(Source: Oklahoma, A History of the State and Its People, by Joseph B. Thoburn and Muriel H. Wright, Volume IV; Lewis Historical Publishing Company, Inc. New York, 1929; transcribed by Susan Geist)

HENRY AMOS CONGER, M. D. In the life and affairs of Duncan and the surrounding community few men have played a more important part than that taken by Henry Amos Conger, who was not only the first physician and the first druggist in the town, but also became in his later years an extensive buyer and seller of real estate, as well as an investor in oil properties. There was scarcely any phase of the life of his municipality or State in which Dr. Conger was not helpfully interested, while he was especially active in fraternal and church affairs. Despite his many and varied interests and the actual labors that he performed in many different fields of endeavor, he was ever a home man, one whose first thoughts were of his family, and his tireless and unswerving devotion in this direction won for him the affections of all whose privilege it was to know him intimately. Dr. Conger's death came as a great shock to his many friends and acquaintances, and was an occasion of widespread sorrow and regret among the citizens of Duncan.

Born on April 15, 1864, in Texas, he spent his boyhood and early youth in that State, and was graduated from the schools of his native district. He then entered the Louisville Medical College, at Louisville, Kentucky, from which he was graduated in the class of 1885. His first practice was in the State of Texas, and it was there that he was married after the passage of five years. Two years after his marriage, in 1892, he removed to Duncan, where he opened the first drugstore and at the same time continued his practice of medicine. For thirty years he cared for the sick and afflicted of that region, going at all times, both day and night, through cold and heat, rain and snow, that he might help to relieve suffering humanity and give the patients who came to him such treatment that they would be restored to health. Those who were unable to pay for his services received as courteous and careful attention as those who paid.

He continued his work in this connection for many years, until at length he gradually extended his interests into other fields, investing in oil royalties and oil leases and becoming eminently successful in his new undertakings. During the World War, when real estate was bringing high prices, he sold sixteen private houses, which he owned, but kept five buildings for their rental. One of these edifices, that in which is housed the Security National Bank, Mrs. Conger recently sold. Dr. Conger was for fifteen years officially connected with the organization of the First National Bank, until he became interested in the Security National Bank. His numerous enterprises were of such character that he left his wife without financial worries, while at the same time he placed himself among the leaders in Oklahoma life, his leadership extending, not into one or two, but into many, fields of work. Although the drugstore that he occupied is now in other hands, the site now being utilized by the Matt and Bill Hardware Company, on Main Street, many people remember well that old store and the faithful labors performed by Dr. Conger within its doors. It was in the rear part of this store building he lived in the first year of his residence in Duncan, and it was there that he ministered to the needs of storm victims on that memorable night before Admiral Dewey's victory at Manila, when the whole town of Duncan was almost blown from the earth. He served the people of Duncan in health matters at a time when the town, still unorganized and undeveloped, probably needed such services most. And then, when the town grew, he became active in other branches of its life, and his vice-presidencies of the First National and then of the Security National Bank were characterized by that same spirit of service and usefulness that marked all his work.

In addition to his other activities, he was a leader in fraternal affairs, having been a member of the Free and Accepted Masons, in which he was Past Worshipful Master, and also a member of the Order of the Eastern Star; and of the Independent Order of Odd Fellows, in which he was a Past Noble Grand. Mrs. Conger is now a member of the Order of the Eastern Star, and is a Past Matron of the Rebekahs, in which order she is also a Past Noble Grand. Dr. Conger, among his other activities, was an ardent church worker, having been a member of the Baptist church, in which for many years he was deacon. When the second church home of the First Baptist Church was built, his name headed the list of those who subscribed the necessary $3,500 for the purpose.

Dr. Conger married, October 26, 1890, after his return to Texas and the beginnings of his professional life there, Fannie Anderson. To this union there was born one child, who died in infancy.

The death of Dr. Henry Amos Conger, which occurred on March 26, 1928, was a cause of great grief and sincere mourning among all who knew him, both in Duncan and elsewhere. So faithful and valuable had been his services to this community that he was known, and justifiably so, as one of its outstanding citizens, and one who, though he has passed on, will live in memory through years to come as a result of his influence upon others. No man can serve as he served his fellows, his friends and his family, without marking himself as an individual of the highest order, while his qualities of mind and heart, his deep religious convictions and his faith in Christ were known to all.
(Source: Oklahoma, A History of the State and its People by Joseph B. Thoburn and Muriel H. Wright; Volume IV, Lewis Historical Publishing Company, Inc. New York 1929; transcribed by Vicki Bryan)

JOHN DAVID COX. Prominent for many years in the business and industrial life of Oklahoma and the Southwest, John David Cox is now one of the foremost citizens of Duncan, Oklahoma, where he still has extensive real estate interests, although he has disposed of a number of his other enterprises. There is scarcely any phase of the business affairs of Oklahoma and Texas in which he has not at one time or another been engaged, and his contribution to the life of his State has been an important one.

Mr. Cox was born in Louisiana, on June 27, 1858, son of Dr. W. P. and Emily Cox, the former of whom was for a number of years a practitioner in the medical profession in Louisiana and Texas. John David Cox received his early education in the grammar and high schools of Texas, and as a young man established a retail and wholesale lumber business in Ferris, Ellis County, that State, which he continued from 1892 to 1901. He then came to Oklahoma and set up a lumber yard at Comanche and another at Duncan and still a third at Lawton. These he conducted until the time of Statehood, in 1907, when he sold them and established in their place a retail lumber business in Duncan. He also owned and operated a mill and sawmill in Blackville, Texas, which he conducted along with his other enterprise in Duncan. The Duncan lumber establishment he sold in 1922, when he entered the hardware and furniture business in Comanche. There he remained until 1926, when he retired from active business endeavor and devoted his time to different real estate interests. He was the owner of much real estate, both business and residential, and had a one hundred sixty-four acre farm in Southern Texas. He has now come to center his interests in the realty field, and, making his home in Duncan, he is one of the prominent and wealthy men of this place. Here Mr. and Mrs. Cox are both active in the affairs of the Methodist Episcopal church, of whose work they are constant supporters.

John David Cox married, on October 28, 1894, in Ringold, Texas, Betty H. Wilson, daughter of Robert and Susan Wilson. Her father was a miller and building contractor by occupation. By this marriage Mr. and Mrs. Cox are the parents of three children: 1) John D., who is now engaged in the furniture business in Duncan, Oklahoma. 2) William T., engaged in the wholesale fence business at Oklahoma City. 3) Robert L., who at the time of writing (1929) is studying law at the University of Oklahoma.
(Source: Oklahoma, A History of the State and Its People by Joseph B. Thoburn and Muriel H. Wright; Volume IV; Lewis Historical Publishing Company, Inc. New York, 1929; transcribed by Vicki Bryan)

As one of the foremost citizens of Duncan, Oklahoma, Oscar Lynn Frensley came to hold a high place in the affairs of his city and State and in the affections of his fellowmen. Here he was engaged in the oil rig construction industry, and was the owner and operator of the widely known Oscar Frensley Rig Building Company. While business activities took up the greater part of his time and attentions, Mr. Frensley was also interested in organizational work as it is carried on by a number of the State's leading men, especially in the American Legion, one of whose conventions he attended in the week just prior to his death. A host of dear friends, Oklahomans who had come to know and cherish him, sincerely mourned his passing, which, of course, took away from his community and State one of the outstanding figures in his industry and in many other fields of endeavor.
Mr. Frensley was born on March 10, 1897, at Duncan, Oklahoma, son of Robert and Angie Frensley, and although he died a very young man, he accomplished a great deal in the brief span of life allotted him. He received his early education in the grammar and high schools of Duncan, his birthplace, and, while still a youth of about twenty years, gave his services to his country when the United States became involved in the late World War. He became, at that time, a member of the United States Marine Corps, Sixth Regiment, and for eighteen months served overseas, while his entire period of service totaled twenty-three months. He was a private in the famous Second Division of that regiment, and, according to the reports of his comrades, perhaps saw more active service than any other Duncan man. He took part in the engagement of Chateau-Thierry and Belleau Wood, and was at Chateau-Thierry on July 18, 1918, when he received word of the death of his father. Not long before the signing of the Armistice, he was gassed, and for several months after the conclusion of hostilities was recuperating in a hospital in Paris, France. He seldom spoke of his war experiences, but his record shows that he went through some of the worst encounters of the entire conflict; and when he did mention the war at all, he told some harrowing experiences. Upon his return to the United States, he entered contract work in rig building in the oil fields, and from the very outset was successful in his new undertaking. There is, of course, no telling what heights he would have attained in the business world if he had been permitted to live longer, but all indications are that he was well on his way to become one of Oklahoma's leading business men. Since his death Mrs. Frensley has continued the business that he established, and now has several rigs under construction. She is one of the few women who could take over a business enterprise of this type and manage it with the success that she has encountered in this field of work.
Mr. Frensley, not content with his business interests, took part in public and, social affairs to a considerable extent. He was, in his political alignment, a staunch member of the Democratic party, whose policies and candidates he regularly supported. He also belonged to the American Legion, and to the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks. Mrs. Frensley is a member of the American Legion Women's Auxiliary. In the week before his death Mr. Frensley went into the Seminole oil fields, immediately after his attendance at the American Legion Convention in Shawnee; and on the day of his death he went to work as usual despite the fact that he was not feeling up to the mark physically.
On December 26, 1924, in Chicago, Illinois, Oscar Lynn Frensley married Norma Chaney, daughter of L. M. and Leda Anderson. Mr. Frensley's father, Robert Frensley, as a ranchman and pioneer of the Indian Territory, displayed many of those sturdy qualities which the son showed in his war service and in his attention to business duty - traits which perhaps led him to over-exert himself and thus may have contributed to his early death.
Mr. Frensley died at the family residence in Duncan, Oklahoma, on Saturday afternoon, September 1, 1928, and his passing was, indeed, a cause of widespread and sincere sorrow among his fellow-men. A man of unusual abilities and achievements, especially for one of his age, he won the esteem, respect and affection of his associates and friends; and his memory will long remain to inspire others in their struggles of life.
(Source: Oklahoma, A History of the State and Its People by Joseph B. Thoburn and Muriel H. Wright; Volume IV; Lewis Historical Publishing Company, Inc. New York, 1929; transcribed by Vicki Bryan)


The founder of the first abstract company in Stephens County, Mr. Furst has brought this enterprise, located at Duncan since 1906, to a high degree of efficiency and usefulness. Naturally he is regarded as one of the city’s most substantial and representative business men and he is liked there as much as he is respected for his many fine qualities.

Henry A. Furst was born in Henry County, Illinois, March 6, 1872, a son of August and Ernestina (Kempin) Furst. He is the oldest of a family of seven. Both his parents were natives of Germany, but were brought to this country during their childhood. The family moved from Illinois to Northern Kansas in 1880, and there Mr. Furst’s father engaged in farming until 1899, when they came to Oklahoma, settling in that year at Agra, Lincoln County. Mr. Furst’s father died March 8, 1927, his wife having died in 1899. Mr. Furst was educated in the public schools of Illinois and Kansas, and, after having graduated from the high school at Corning, Kansas, taught school for eight years. Eventually, in 1906, he came to Duncan, then Indian Territory, and there started in the abstract business under the name Stephens County Abstract Company. He was the first to engage in this type of work in Stephens County, and his company met with immediate success, which has continued ever since its organization. Mr. Furst is very highly regarded in Duncan, as well as in other parts of the county and State. He is a member of the Modern Woodmen of America. His religious affiliations are with the Methodist Episcopal Church, South.

Mr. Furst married, May 20, 1896, Rosa Broadbent. Mrs. Furst is a native of Illinois, of English descent, her father having been born in England. Mr. and Mrs. Furst are the parents of three children: Venice E., who married Ray Slaughter, of Duncan; Edith; and Mary Helen.

(Source: Oklahoma, A History of the State and Its People, by Joseph B. Thoburn and Muriel H. Wright, Volume IV; Lewis Historical Publishing Company, Inc. New York, 1929; transcribed by Susan Geist)


A pioneer of Oklahoma, one of the fathers of the city of Duncan, Frank Fuqua first came to the site where the city now stands when it was only a part of the vast rolling prairie which spreads through all Stephens County. With his companion, W. H. Breedlove, he erected one of the first business structures in the new community, and he also built one of the first houses, but in many other ways it was he who laid the foundations of this prosperous municipality. He was chosen as the pioneer mayor of Duncan, and on the insistence of his fellow-townsmen retained that position for four terms, during which the groundwork was laid for many characteristic enterprises of the present day. It was in February, 1891, that Mr. Fuqua decided to cast his lot with the town as he visioned it, and since that time he has always been a resident here.

Mr. Fuqua’s father, Theodore J. Fuqua, was born near Richmond, Virginia, in 1822, and by occupation was a carpenter and builder. He was educated and reached maturity in the Old Dominion, and when a young man removed to Tennessee, where he learned his trade and later married a native of that State, Margaret Lowe. After several further years in Stewart County, the family home was transferred to Metropolis, Massac County, Illinois, where the father continued work at his trade until death came in 1882. His wife had passed away several years previously and they are both buried at Metropolis. They were the parents of the following children: 1. D. N., a resident of Duncan, who died in 1925. 2. Frank, of this record. 3. James M., of Dunklin County, Missouri. 4. Marcellus, of Memphis, Tennessee, deceased. 5. Edward F., of Dallas, Texas.

Frank Fuqua was born in Stewart County, Tennessee, on January 10, 1853, and early in life removed with his parents to Metropolis, Illinois, where he received the greater part of his education. In 1876, as a young man of twenty-three, he located in Cook County, Texas, and was first employed by Reason Jones, an honored pioneer of that section, whose daughter he afterwards married. Ginning and farming were the chief occupations of his later years in the State.

In 1891, still with only limited resources at his command, Mr. Fuqua left his home near Valley View, to come to Oklahoma, where he became one of the strongest influences in the founding and growth of Duncan. With W. H. Breedlove, who accompanied his to the site of the present town, he built a cotton gin in the hollow about two blocks east of the electric power house, the machinery for which was hauled from Texas. Afterwards he built what is now known as the Duncan and Farmers’ Gin, operating it successfully for about two years. At the end of this time Mr. Fuqua sold his interest and entered the mercantile business with R. J. Allen, with whom he conducted a grocery store until the close of 1907, when he disposed of his holdings to devote his time more closely to an invalid wife, who died in 1908. Again he took over the operation of a cotton gin, an enterprise in which he still continues and which he has guided with sure hand along the pathway of success. Mr. Fuqua also owns a fine farm of three hundred and twenty acres in Stephens County, and several important properties in the city of Duncan. Whatever has come to him in the way of profit, he has earned through the legitimate channels of trade and not through unwarranted speculation. He has aided in the substantial building of the town by the erection of several business houses on Main Street, and of his residence on East Main Street.

Mr. Fuqua’s record of public service has also been most distinguished, and constitutes further evidence of his faithful and high citizenship. While he was mayor of the city, bonds were floated for the erection of the waterworks, and he issued the call for the voting of bonds to insure the building of the public school of Duncan. He was chairman of the school board, 1905-06. Mr. Fuqua has always been interested in all movements of public benefit. He is a member and for several years served as chairman of the Duncan Board of Trade, while he is also a member of the Chamber of Commerce, in which he has long played an active part. In politics he is a consistent Democrat, combining the straightforward honesty of the old school with the progressive tendencies of the new, while, fraternally, he is affiliated with the Free and Accepted Masons, being a member of all bodies of the Ancient Accepted Scottish Rite, including the thirty-second degree of the consistory. He is a leading worker in the Duncan Baptist Church, of which his is also a deacon.

In 1878 Frank Fuqua married Elvira Jones, who died in 1891, without surviving issue. In 1893 he married Miss A. Jones, daughter of Maston C. Jones, of Texas; two children were born of this union; Nolan and Herbert. In 1908 Mr. Fuqua’s second wife died, and in 1916 he married the widow of William Skaggs, who was born in Texas, a daughter of Colonel J. H. Woods, now deceased, formerly owner of the Duncan-Eagle paper. Mr. Fuqua also survives his third wife.

(Source: Oklahoma, A History of the State and Its People, by Joseph B. Thoburn and Muriel H. Wright, Volume IV; Lewis Historical Publishing Company, Inc. New York, 1929; transcribed by Susan Geist)


Admitted to the Oklahoma bar in 1920, only a few years after he had come to the State from his native Kansas. Mr. Hickman since then has been one of the best-known lawyers of Duncan, Stephens County. He is widely known, also throughout the Southwest, as a handwriting expert, his standing in this profession being very high. His services are frequently in demand in court cases throughout the Southwest, especially in connection with the determining of forgery and matters concerning disputed signatures. A veteran of the World War, he has always been active in the affairs of the American Legion, both in Duncan and in the Oklahoma State Department. He is also a member of several fraternal organizations and is greatly liked and highly respected in Duncan and, indeed, everywhere else where his professional activities have taken him.

Byrl B. Hickman was born at Columbus, Kansas, June 30, 1894, a son of John and Viva (Lathrop) Hickman. He has one sister, Myrtle Hickman, who makes her home with her parents. Both of Mr. Hickman’s parents are natives of Virginia, his father having been engaged for many years in farming and now (1929) a resident of Baxter Springs, Kansas. Mr. Hickman received his early education in the public schools of Columbus, Kansas, and, after having graduated from high school there, attended the South East Teachers’ Normal School, at Pittsburg, Kansas. After graduating from this institution, he became a member of its faculty. Later he attended a business college and there specialized in the study of handwriting. On June 13, 1918, he enlisted in the United States Naval Reserve Corps and was made a company commander on the receiving ship, “Great Lakes.” Discharged from active service, January 20, 1919, he came to Oklahoma, where he has made his home since then. During 1919-20 he was court reporter at Shawnee, Pottawatomie County, and during this period also took up the study of law. Admitted to the Oklahoma bar, December 10, 1920, he removed to Duncan, Stephens County, and there engaged in the practice of his profession. He has been very successful as a lawyer, but is even more widely known as a handwriting expert. He has not only appeared very frequently as an expert witness in the various district courts of Oklahoma and of other Southwestern States, but he has also done much work for the State of Oklahoma. Mr. Hickman’s work as a handwriting expert is based on long study of this subject and is carried on according to scientific principles. It has been found of great use to many lawyers in the preparation and in the trial of law suits involving questioned handwriting, the courts now permitting expert and opinion evidence given by persons skilled in the knowledge of handwriting, although they may never have seen the person write whose name appeared upon the instrument in question. This opinion evidence of the expert is based upon a thorough examination and mathematical comparison of the writing admitted to be genuine and that thought to be spurious or simulated. The use of enlarged photographs of the two handwritings, placed in juxtapositions before the jury, with their similarities and dissimilarities pointed out and explained by a competent witness, usually insures the return of the proper verdict. Mr. Hickman has received many letters of endorsement for his work, including some from several former governors of Oklahoma. Thus, ex-Governor J. B. A. Robertson wrote: “It is a pleasure to give him my unqualified endorsement. His work was eminently satisfactory.” Hon. Aldrick Blake, former secretary to ex-Governor Walton, has called Mr. Hickman “the best handwriting expert in the State of Oklahoma.” Still another endorsement of which Mr. Hickman naturally is very proud, is that given to him by members of the Stephens County Bar Association, which speaks of him as “an experienced, efficient and reliable handwriting expert, either in the trial or the preparation of cases involving questioned handwriting, and capable in this line and able to qualify before any court of record.” This recommendation is signed by County Judge John W. Scott, District Judge M. W. Pugh, County Attorney J. H. Long, Assistant County Attorney Jerome Sullivan, and by more than twenty of Mr. Hickman’s fellow members of the Stephens County Bar. He is a member of the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks, a Mason, and a member of the “40 and 8,” as well as of the American Legion. In the affairs of the latter organization he has always been very active, having served at one time as a member of the executive committee of the State department from the Sixth District, and for four years as post service officer at Duncan.

Mr. Hickman married, March 5, 1921, Bertie Eloise Slaughter, a daughter of J. M. Slaughter and Emma (Gray) Slaughter, of Glendale, California. Mr. and Mrs. Hickman have one son, Richard Neil Hickman, and make their home at Duncan, where Mr. Hickman’s offices are located in Suite 6-7 New Barrett Building.

(Source: Oklahoma, A History of the State and Its People, by Joseph B. Thoburn and Muriel H. Wright, Volume IV; Lewis Historical Publishing Company, Inc. New York, 1929; transcribed by Susan Geist)

For almost ten years Duncan, Stephen County, has been the scene of Dr. Ivy's successful professional activities as a physician. Prior to coming to Duncan he had practiced his profession, first, for some five years in his native State of Mississippi, and then for four years at Marlow, Stephen County. Dr. Ivy has a large and important practice and enjoys to a remarkable degree the liking and confidence not only of his patients, but of the community at large. He is a popular member of several fraternal organizations and active in religious life.
Wallis Sterling Ivy was born at West Point, Mississippi, December 11, 1885, the youngest of the six children of Dr. Thomas Gates and Katherine (Price) Ivy. His father, who died in 1923, was for many years a successful physician and surgeon. Dr. W. S. Ivy was educated at the Agricultural and Mechanical College, Starkville, Mississippi, and at the University of Mississippi, Oxford, Mississippi. Having completed his education he accepted a position with the Mississippi Cotton Oil Company at West Point, Mississippi, continuing with this company for two years in the capacity of cashier. He then took up the study of medicine at Vanderbilt University, Nashville, Tennessee. He began the practice of medicine at Muldon, Mississippi, where he remained for two years, removing then to Grenada, Mississippi, where he continued in the practice of his profession for three years. In 1916 he came to Oklahoma and at first located at Marlow, Stephen County, practicing there for four years until 1920. Since then he has been one of the best-known and most successful general practitioners of Duncan, Stephen County. He is a member of the Free and Accepted Masons and a member of the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks and of the Duncan Kiwanis Club. In politics he is a supporter of the Democratic party, while his religious affiliations are with the Christian church.
Dr. Ivy married, November 6, 1912, Mary Louise Brinkner, a native of Mississippi and a daughter of General J. H. and Mary (Montgomery) Brinkner. Dr. and Mrs. Ivy are the parents of four children: Virginia Price, John Brinkner, Wallace Sterling and Robert Emmet Ivy.
(Source: Oklahoma, A History of the State and Its People by Joseph B. Thoburn and Muriel H. Wright; Volume IV; Lewis Historical Publishing Company, Inc. New York, 1929; transcribed by Vicki Bryan)


Prominently identified with the lumber business in Oklahoma for a quarter of a century, Nat Kendrick, of Duncan has been head of the Kendrick-King Lumber Company since 1918, with branches at Chickasha and Ada. Mr. Kendrick is a man of great industry and of practical application of talents. He has been a successful farmer as well as a prosperous merchant and is one of the leading citizens in a community where activity on the part of all is common and where the drone is an unknown quantity. Devoted to the best interests of the State and to the districts in which he operates, he is one of the substantial members of the commercial machine whose wheels revolve in making the progress apparent on every side. Representative of a sturdy and industrious race, he conducts his business along lines of fairness and honor that makes its appeal to the honest citizen, brings him host of friends and commands the respect of all. Duncan and Mr. Kendrick are necessary to each other and each appreciates the bond that holds them together and that works for the benefit of the entire business body in cooperative harmony.

He was born in Freestone County, Texas, September 22, 1877, a son of J. S. and Laura (Terry) Kendrick, and is the third born of five children of his parents. Zem Kendrick is in the lumber business in Duncan; W. B. is a druggist at Mexia, Texas; J. E. is a resident of Duncan, and Coleman Kendrick is also retired and lives in Waco, Texas.

Nat Kendrick was educated in the country schools of Texas, and after school hours worked on a farm, keeping at this occupation until 1904, when he worked in a drygoods store for a year, then coming to Duncan, where for four years he worked in the employ of R. B. Spencer. He became yard manager for the Spencer lumber industry at Marlow after four years with the Duncan plant, and spent nine years there, when he determined to engage in the trade independently and, in 1918, opened his own establishment in Duncan. Later he established the branch yards at Ada and Chickasha. He is a member of the Christian church. Fraternally, he is affiliated with the Blue Lodge, Free and Accepted Masons, of Duncan; the Guthrie Consistory, Ancient Accepted Scottish Rite Masons, and India Temple, Ancient Arabic Order Nobles of the Mystic Shrine, of Oklahoma City.

Mr. Kendrick married, December 27, 1903, Georgia Brock, and they are the parents of one child: Laura, who married F. C. King, of Duncan.

(Source: Oklahoma, A History of the State and Its People, by Joseph B. Thoburn and Muriel H. Wright, Volume IV; Lewis Historical Publishing Company, Inc. New York, 1929; transcribed by Susan Geist)

Ed J. Leeman
Proprietor and editor of the Duncan Banner, Ed J. Leeman, is one of the successful newspaper men of Southern Oklahoma. To journalism he has brought the ability which would have enabled him to succeed in lines of business much more remunerative, and since boyhood has been through all the grades of service in the Fourth Estate, from printer to editor, and from a salaried position to independent publisher.
The Duncan Banner which he is now so successfully upholding to the breeze of public patronage has the distinction of being the oldest paper of Stephens County. It was established in 1892. The equipment was purchased in Texas, shipped by railroad to Pauls Valley, and from there hauled by wagon to Duncan. Its politics is democratic, and the Banner enjoys a large circulation and influence both in Stephens and surrounding counties. The offices and plant are located in the rear of the City National Bank Building, near the corner of Main and Eighth streets.
Ed J. Leeman was born at Blackjack Grove, Texas, September 23, 1874. The Leeman family is of Scotch Irish ancestry, and were settled many years ago in the State of Kentucky. J. A. Leeman, father of the Duncan editor, was born in Kentucky in 1847, and after fully half a century of useful service in the medical profession is now living at Pecos, Texas. He came to Lamar County, Texas, just prior to the Civil war, and in 1862 enlisted in a Texas regiment and was with the Confederate army until the close of hostilities. He was once taken prisoner. After the war he graduated from the Louisville Medical College, first located in Hunt County, and began the practice of medicine in Hopkins County, Texas. He practiced there and in West Texas for at least half a century, retiring from his work in 1914 when elected county treasurer of Winkler County, Texas, the office to which he now gives all his time. He is a democrat, a member of the Methodist Episcopal Church, South, and of the Masonic fraternity. Doctor Leeman married Miss Mattie Armor, a native of Mississippi. Their children are: Sam M., who is connected with the Waurika News-Democrat at Waurika, Oklahoma; Flora, who married J. L. Mann, a merchant at Clyde, Texas; Ed J.; William B., who is in the newspaper business at Clyde, Texas; and Lucy, wife of a railroad man at Toyah, Texas.
Ed J. Leeman was educated in country schools and in a high school in West Texas, but at the age of sixteen began his practical career in learning the printing business in Stonewall County, Texas, being connected with the Rayner News for three years. The next three years were spent in the Merkel Mail in Taylor County and at the end of that time he bought the plant and edited the Mail until 1904. He then removed to Fort Worth and was in the drug business one year. Mr. Leeman came to Duncan, Oklahoma, in 1905 and bought a half interest in the Banner, his business associate and partner being F. E. Sampson. On February 1, 1915, Mr. Leemau bought Mr. Sampson's interest and is now enjoying the entire responsibilities of management and is the owner of one of the best newspaper enterprises in the southern part of the state.
Mr. Leeman is a democrat, served three years on the Duncan Town Council, and has been secretary of the Democratic Central Committee since the date of statehood. He is a member of the Methodist Episcopal Church, South, and affiliates with Mistletoe Lodge No. 17 Knights of Pythias and is secretary of the Duncan Chamber of Commerce.
While living in Texas at Abilene on December 4, 1898, he married Miss Alice Herring, whose father, now deceased, was an educator well known at Waco and other places in Texas. Mr. and Mrs. Leeman have five children: Wi, a junior in the Duncan High School; Edwin, Terry and George, all in school; and Judson.
[Source: A Standard History of Oklahoma Volume 4 By Joseph Bradfield Thoburn - Submitted by a Friend of Free Genealogy]

Louis Allen Morton
A resourceful and widely experienced educator is now superintendent of schools for Stephens County. Louis A. Morton has some high ideals as an educator, and has done much to give practical efficiency to the various school systems under his charge at different times, and can properly be given credit for a share in the remarkable progressive movement which has been under way in Oklahoma school matters for the past five or six years since he is by no means among the least influential and able of the men who are carrying forward this great work.
Louis Allen Morton was born in Russellville, Arkansas, August 19, 1877, a son of Reuben O. and Madrid (Love) Morton. There are few older families in America than the Mortons. They came originally from England, the emigrant ancestor having been John Morton, who served as secretary to Governor Bradford of the Massachusetts colony. Mr. Morton's great-grandfather, though descended from this New England settler, was for half a century a sea captain, and was at first impressed into the service by the British, and, later, sailed under the American flag on the Atlantic.
The grandfather was Thomas H. Morton, who became a large planter and slave owner in Mississippi, died at Meridian in that state. Reuben O. Morton was born on his father's plantation in Kemper County, Mississippi, in 1847, and is still living with home in Arkansas. Though but a boy at the time he served during the last two years of the war between the states, having enlisted at the age of fifteen in the Thirty-third Regiment of Mississippi Infantry. In 1869 ho removed to Russellville, Arkansas, and in 1884 to Pottsville in that state. Farming has been his regular vocation, though for a few years he was in the drug business. He is now president of the Citizens Bank of Pottsville. He became a charter member of the Masonic Lodge in his home locality in Arkansas many years ago, is a past master, and is now and has been for many years clerk in the Baptist Church. His wife was born in Pope County, Arkansas, June 1, 1851. Their children are: Thomas H., who when a young man entered the railroad service, and at the age of twenty-six was on his way South to visit the Texas oil wells, and was killed in Houston, the circumstances of his death indicating that he was waylaid and robbed; Annie, who died in childhood; Louis A.; Hugh D., a resident of Arkadelphia, Arkansas, who in 1915 was graduated A. B. from the Ouachita Baptist College of Arkansas; Lorenzo D., who is a traveling salesman with headquarters at Amarillo, Texas; Lillie, who was educated in the Mountain Home College and the Ouachita Baptist College in Arkansas, and is now the wife of W. H. Rankin, who is the owner of a large cotton plantation and owns and operates several cotton gins along the Arkansas River and lives in Russellville; Corrine, who is graduated in art from the Mountain Home College and the Ouachita Baptist College and is the wife of J. E. Allmon, a cotton planter and gin owner at Pottsville, Arkansas; Arkadelphia, who acquired her education in the Mountain Home and the Ouachita Baptist colleges, and is now the wife of Neal Campbell, principal of the high school at Gravelly, Arkansas; Blanche, who was educated in the same institutions attended by her sisters, and is now living with her parents.
Louis A. Morton spent his early years on his father's farm in Arkansas until 1897, and in the meantime had acquired the fundamentals in the public schools of Pottsville, and graduated from the high school of that place with the class of 1896. In 1907 he took the degree A. B. from the Ouachita Baptist College at Arkadelphia. However, he had early in life taken up the practical work of education, and for four years before his graduation from college served as county examiner or county superintendent of schools in Baxter County, Arkansas. He was president of Mountain Home College four years, 1902-1906. From 1907 to 1911 Mr. Morton was city superintendent of schools at Comanche, Oklahoma. During 1911 and 1912 he taught Latin and Science in Duncan public schools, and in November, 1912, was elected county superintendent of schools of Stephens County, beginning his official duties in July, 1913. By re-election on November 6, 1914, he has another two year term to serve. His jurisdiction as county superintendent extends to seventy-two schools in the county, one hundred fifty teachers and a total enrollment of 8,371 scholars. In many ways he has helped to coordinate the instruction and training of the local schools with the practical needs of modern life, but has probably gained his chief reputation over the state as an educator through his having originated the plan to get every school in his county to build "a mile of good roads," and as a result of his leadership in this matter forty miles of first-class highway have been constructed in Stephens County up to the present writing, May 15, 1915. In this connection it should be noted that Mr. Morton is secretary of the Stephens County Good Roads Association.
In politics he is a democrat. He is a deacon in the Baptist Church and a superintendent of the Sunday School, and fraternally has affiliations with Duncan Lodge No. 61, Ancient Free and Accepted Masons; Duncan Chapter No. 21, Royal Arch Masons; Border Queen Lodge No. 60, Knights of Pythias at Comanche, of which he is past chancellor; Duncan Camp No. 515, Woodmen of the World; Duncan Chapter of the Order of Eastern Star, of which he is worthy patron. He is a member of the Duncan Chamber of Commerce.
On September 13, 1904, at Mountain Home, Arkansas, Mr. Morton married Miss Nell Love, daughter of W. A. Love, a farmer of Mountain Home. To their marriage were born five children: William Allen, who died at the age of fifteen months; Louis A., Jr., who was born April 29, 1909; Nell, who died at the age of four years; James R., who died at the age of three weeks; and Joy Louise, born September 4, 1915.
[Source: A Standard History of Oklahoma Volume 4 By Joseph Bradfield Thoburn - Submitted by a Friend of Free Genealogy]

John O'Neill
The late John O 'Neill was born in County Tyrone, Ireland, August 27, 1845, and was in his seventieth year when he died. His father, Patrick O'Neill, was born in the same county of Ireland in 1813, lived there a farmer all his life and died in 1901. John O'Neill spent his .early life in Ireland, was educated there, and in 1863 at the age of eighteen went to Scotland, but after a year or two returned to Queenstown, and in 1866 took passage for the New World. He landed in Philadelphia, remained there about six weeks, then went to Mount Sterling, Kentucky, and his farming experience in that state continued until 1879. .
It was about thirty-five years ago when John O 'Neill came to the Southwest and first located in the vicinity of Sherman, Grayson County, Texas. He was one of the early farmers and ranchers in that locality, but about 1881 moved to another place in Montague County, near the Red River boundary of Texas. His residence in Southern Oklahoma dates from 1885, when he was one of the pioneer white ranchers to secure a foothold on the Indian lands in the vicinity of Wild Horse Creek. His operations as a rancher and farmer continued there on an increasing scale until 1904, when he relaxed in some degree the strenuous activities that had engaged him to that time, and moved into the town of Duncan. His work and influence are visibly impressed upon the general business and civic progress of Duncan. For a time he had a dry goods store and was also one of the directors of the First National Bank of Duncan, and was one of the founders and a director in the Duncan National Bank, which was established August 8, 1904. In 1905 he was instrumental in having the bank erect its new stone building on Main street. His creditable work in the upbuilding of Duncan should never be passed over without honorable mention. He was a patron of the local schools and helped the village improve its institutions and establish its prosperity on a sound basis. Though he long stood as a leader, he had no aspirations for office, and contented himself with voting the democratic ticket. He was a member of the Catholic Church.
John O'Neill married Elizabeth Payne, who was born within three miles of the county seat of Shelby County, Missouri, acquired her education in that and other counties of Missouri and in the Baptist College at LaGrange in that state. She and her daughter now occupy the fine residence built by the late Mr. O 'Neill at the corner of Third and Hickory streets in Duncan. In addition to this town home the real estate comprises a splendid tract of a thousand acres of land twenty miles east of Duncan, of which 800 acres are under cultivation, and also a stone business building at the corner of Main and Eighth streets, Duncan. Mrs. O'Neill has two daughters. Annie Josephine was married at Duncan November 27, 1907, to James R. Sparks, he is a Duncan hardware merchant, and they have one child living, Mary Patricia, born March 8, 1914. Bird, the younger daughter, is Joint administratrix with her mother of the O'Neill estate. She is a graduate of St. Joseph's Academy at Guthrie, Oklahoma.
Mrs. O'Neill is a daughter of Thomas H. and Martha (Marshall) Payne. The Payne family is of Scotch Irish ancestry, and was established in Virginia before the Revolutionary war, and after that struggle moved across the mountains into Kentucky. Thomas H. Payne was born in Bourbon County, Kentucky, in 1821, and died in Montague County, Texas, in September, 1884. The principal places of his residence were in Bourbon County, Kentucky, in Palmyra, and Shelby County, Missouri, and late in life he removed to Montague County, Texas.
He was a farmer and stock raiser during the greater part of his active career. During the war he participated on the Federal side for about one year, having first served in the Missouri militia under John Glover and continued with those troops when they were regularly enrolled in the Federal army. He was stricken with pneumonia while in the service and given an honorable discharge for disability. Martha Marshall, the mother of Mrs. O'Neill, was born in Kentucky in 1827 and died in Montague County, Texas, in October, 1900. Mrs. O'Neill was the oldest of their ten children, and some mention of the others of the family is as follows: Harriet Katherine, who now lives in Idaho, is the widow of the late Thomas Joiner, a farmer; Samuel, who lives on a farm near Marlow, Oklahoma: William, a farmer at Marlow; Winifred, at Butler, Oklahoma; Newton, a farmer near Wewoka, Oklahoma; Gallic, wife of Fred McClannahan, a carpenter and builder who lives at Holbrook, Arizona ; Lulu, wife of Allison Scott, a retired railroad man at Fort Worth, Texas; Thomas, who was a rancher and died at Duncan at the age of forty-three; Walter, a farmer and rancher at Duncan.
[Source: A Standard History of Oklahoma Volume 4 By Joseph Bradfield Thoburn - Submitted by a Friend of Free Genealogy]

JAMES L. PATTERSON, M. D. Conducting one of the finest private hospitals in Oklahoma, Dr. James L. Patterson, of Duncan, has, in a very brief time, established himself as one of our most important citizens, as well as having shown himself to be a practitioner of his profession who ranks high among his fellows and commands the respect of the entire community. He is a hustling citizen in a bustling commonwealth, of immense importance as a unit in the never ending toil that is necessary to the upbuilding of a people's prosperity, and communicating his exuberant energies to all with whom he comes in contact. He is a rapid maker of friends and understands how to retain them, is deeply interested in civic progress and devoted and loyal in
his attitude toward all worthy fraternal and kindred organizations that make their appeal to the better element of the community. He has served with credit in the Federal military establishment and is a popular member of the largest post of the American Legion in Oklahoma. Dr. Patterson came here with a sound medical education and is one of the doctors who keeps constantly abreast of the times and the progress of his brethren in the profession, thus winning the confidence of a growing list of adherents and possessing the esteem and admiration of all.

He was born in Union Star, Missouri, March 20, 1884, a son of Charles T. and Florence (Lindley) Patterson, and is the elder of two children of his parents, his brother Fred being associated with him in his hospital enterprise. He was educated through the elementary and high schools in St. Joseph, Missouri, and then attended the Ensworth Central Medical College, graduating with the degree of Doctor of Medicine and then taking a year as an intern in Ensworth Hospital. This was followed by a post-graduate course in Rush Medical College, Chicago, Illinois, after which he came to Oklahoma and began practice in Woodward. Remaining there from 1906 to 1925, he removed to Elk City, practiced there for another year and then, in 1926, came to Duncan. Here he purchased the old Ruth Hospital and began the erection of a new edifice. This was completed in the fall of 1928 at an approximate cost of $90,000. It is equipped with every modern appliance for the treatment of medical and surgical cases and is one of the finest establishments of its character in the Southwest. Dr. Patterson served with the rank of captain for two years in the Medical Corps of the Army, stationed on the Mexican border. He is a member of the Chamber of Commerce and of its board of directors and is also a steward and trustee of the Methodist Episcopal Church in Duncan. He belongs to Harry Dobbs Post of the American Legion, with a membership of more than five hundred and said to be the largest post in the State. In addition to membership in the Kiwanis Club he is affiliated with the Blue Lodge, Free and Accepted Masons; Chapter, No. 284, of Woodward, Royal Arch Masons; Consistory, of Guthrie, Ancient Accepted Scottish Rite Masons, and India Temple, of Oklahoma City, Ancient Arabic Order Nobles of the Mystic Shrine. He is Past Master of his Blue Lodge and Past High Priest of the Chapter. Also he has membership in the American Medical Association, Order of the Eastern Star, White Shrine, and Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks. He is Past Commander of his American Legion post.

Dr. James L. Patterson married, June 17, 1908, Mary Ward, daughter of F. C. Ward of Woodward, and they are the parents of three children: Mildred, eighteen years of age, a college student; Marjorie, a high school student; James L., Jr., six years of age.
(Source: Oklahoma, A History of the State and its People by Joseph B. Thoburn and Muriel H. Wright; Volume IV, Lewis Historical Publishing Company, Inc. New York 1929; transcribed by Vicki Bryan)

SAMUEL PALMER RAWLS, M. D. Pioneer physician of Oklahoma, practical farmer and humanitarian, upright citizen and able public official, Samuel Palmer Rawls lived a life full of usefulness and left a name that will be long cherished by the people of this State, especially by his contemporaries in Altus, where he lived for many years. Known and beloved throughout a wide district for his kindly manner, as well as his skill in medicine, his friendship was the pride of a great number of the men and women who had the advantage of acquiring it. In his public relations he was skillful and progressive, in his religion sound, in his professional work a painstaking man of science who left nothing to chance and gave his whole knowledge to the task of alleviating human suffering. He did splendid service in Oklahoma and left a name that will long be esteemed as representative of the finest grade of citizenship, one of the builders of the commonwealth who could ill be spared from its activities.

He was born in Carthage, Mississippi, September 10, 1854, son of Henry Rawls, a large plantation owner in Mississippi, who served as State representative and in other public offices for many years; and of Margaret D. Rawls, and was educated in that State. His first studies of medicine were undertaken in association with his brother-in-law, afterward in the Medical School of Tulane University, at New Orleans, Louisiana. He came to Oklahoma about 1908, first establishing himself in the practice of medicine at Locke and afterward continuing at Duncan, removing to Altus in 1907, where he remained until his death. During the World War he was the medical member of the local examining and exemption board of the draft and for many years served as county and city Health Officer. He was the owner of a fine medical library, which was presented to Tulane University after his death. He also left an estate of four hundred and eighty acres of land nine miles from Altus, and other valuable property.

Dr. Rawls was appointed by Governor Williams of Oklahoma to attend the World Medical Convention to be held in Russia in 1917, but was prevented from attending because of the United States entering the World War in that year. For years he made his home on the farm, where he engaged in stock raising and at that same time took care of his medical practice. At the time of his death he was serving as surgeon general of the Altus Camp, No. 1417, United Confederate Veterans, Third Brigade, of Oklahoma, which organization passed resolutions of regret and sympathy, a copy of which is in the possession of Mrs. Rawls. He died June 20, 1918. He was a member of the Methodist Episcopal church.

Samuel Palmer Rawls married twice; (first), May 25, 1880, Fannie Newell, of Kosciusko, Mississippi, and they were the parents of Lela N. and Henry W., deceased. He married (second), January 2, 1898, Nina (Roberts) Ater, daughter of Obe and Catherine Roberts of Texas. Mr. Roberts was a large ranch owner, owing several hundred acres and having been the first man in Texas to adopt wire fencing on a great scale. He served four years in the Civil War, one of the first volunteers from Texas, and was in Parsons Brigade, serving for a time under Captain Doak, and under General Marmaduke's command. At one time when the General was badly wounded, Mr. Roberts carried on the attack and command. He won the title of "Texas Scout" by reason of his excellent scout work, and several times accompanied the General on perilous trips. He was a man of unquestioned honor. By the second marriage he became the father of one daughter, Omega, who married E. W. Britton, and they are the parents of Sam Rawls Britton.

Dr. Rawls was one of the most public-spirited citizens of the State of Oklahoma, as well as a medical man of unusual ability and a gentleman of culture and courtesy. There was nothing within his power to do that he declined in the interest of community welfare, and the esteem in which he was held was a well-earned tribute to his high character and personal charm.
(Source: Oklahoma, A History of the State and its People by Joseph B. Thoburn and Muriel H. Wright; Volume IV, Lewis Historical Publishing Company, Inc. New York 1929; transcribed by Vicki Bryan)


Experienced as an educator and as a versatile business man, Ben F. Ridge, present postmaster of Duncan, Oklahoma, is one of the very popular and energetic citizens of this district of the State. For eighteen years the residents of Duncan knew him as one of the most successful and energetic merchants of the town and for another period of eight years as an equally successful manipulator of real estate transactions. The favorable impression he gave during this long period has ever been fully justified, for he has worked sincerely for the good of the whole people and not alone for his own aggrandizement. This is the spirit of civic enterprise and Mr. Ridge possesses that virtue in high degree. Scrupulous in his business methods, he is one of those rare personalities that makes friends and never an enemy, the open secret of this being his honesty in every detail of his operations and an abiding faith in his fellow-men. Friends innumerable and logy followers in all who have his acquaintance are the reward of clean living and upright methods. He is a very able man and one whom this State is fortunate in possessing.

He was born in Alton, Indiana, December 28, 1867, a son of John J. and Phoebe (Beals) Ridge, both natives of Indiana and both deceased. His father was a farmer and he is the seventh child of a family of eight. Educated in the public schools of Alton and at the National Normal School at Lebanon, Ohio, and at the State Normal at Terre Haute, Indiana, he began his career as a teacher and followed that occupation for seven years. He then abandoned it and entered the mercantile business in Alton, remaining there for three years and then removing to Oklahoma and settling in Duncan in 1900. Here he established a hardware business and conducted it with success until 1918, during which period he served as president of the Oklahoma State Hardware Association. In 1918 he sold his business and entered upon real estate operations, following that line successfully until 1926, when he received the appointment of postmaster of Duncan, which position he still holds. He attends the Methodist Episcopal church and belongs to a number of fraternal and social organizations, having affiliation with Duncan Lodge, No. 60, Free and Accepted Masons; and other higher orders up to the White Shrine of Jerusalem. In the Knights of Pythias he has served in nearly all offices of his lodge; was sent to the Grand Lodge for three terms, and is now Deputy Grand Chancellor. In the Shrine he is Watchman. In commercial organizations he holds, among others, membership in the Chamber of Commerce.

Ben F. Ridge married twice. In December, 1896, he married Lillie May Walker, of Alton, Indiana, whose death occurred November 30, 1923. He married October 29, 1927, Mrs. Mary J. Glass, of Tennessee.

(Source: Oklahoma, A History of the State and Its People, by Joseph B. Thoburn and Muriel H. Wright, Volume IV; Lewis Historical Publishing Company, Inc. New York, 1929; transcribed by Susan Geist)


A man of much ability, who was a resident of Duncan, Oklahoma, from the very beginning of the twentieth century until the time of his death, Sidney Edwin Russell won for himself a secure place in the affections of the community by the simple dignity of his character and the noble usefulness of his life. He was a man and citizen of the finest type, whose impress and whose influence will be felt at Duncan long after the generation
which knew him is gone.

Mr. Russell was born in Salisbury, North Carolina, on April 9, 1857, a son of William M. and Lacraei Russell, of that State. His father was long a school teacher, engaging in educational work through all his active life.

Sidney Edwin Russell removed to Texas as a boy, attending the grammar and public schools of the Commonwealth. Early in life he was a railroad conductor, but while successful in this work, he sought larger opportunities elsewhere, and finally, on January 27, 1902, came to Duncan, where he homesteaded twelve miles southwest of the town. Here he engaged in general farming and stock-raising, following agricultural pursuits for many years with every success. From time to time he bought additional acreage, until he owned five hundred and sixty acres of fine farming land, where he continued farming operations and the stock-raising business until his death on November 15, 1915. In later years this property has proved to be highly productive of oil and gas. Mrs. Russell has leased the land for oil and gas, and nine successful wells are now in operation. In 1926 she removed from the old homestead property and built one of the finest residences in Duncan, where she now resides.

In politics Mr. Russell was a consistent Republican, although never blindly following party dictates in governmental or civic matters. His hearty support was always assured for those movements with whose aims he was in sympathy, irrespective of their source of origin. He was affiliated, fraternally, with the Woodmen of the World, while Mrs. Russell holds membership
in the Order of the Eastern Star, the White Shrine of Jerusalem, and the State Federation of
Women's Clubs.

On January 30, 1894, at Dallas, Texas, Sidney Edwin Russell married Dora Underwood, daughter of David and Elizabeth Underwood, her father a major in the Southern Army during the period of the Civil War. Mr. and Mrs. Russell became the parents of four children, as follows: Ethel, Georgia, May, and Sidney E. With his family, Mr. Russell worshipped in the faith of the Methodist Episcopal church.

Mr. Russell's death occurred at Dallas, Texas, following an operation from which he failed to rally. News of his passing was received everywhere with the greatest sorrow, for he was a man of many friends, widely loved and honored. "There were few men in the county," wrote the Duncan "Banner," in its issue of November 15, 1915, "who stood higher or commanded a larger circle of friends, and his death is deeply deplored. The "Banner" joins in the universal expression of sympathy to the bereaved relatives. A kind and loving husband and father, and a loyal friend and worthy citizen is gone. The country can ill afford to lose such men."
(Source: Oklahoma, A History of the State and Its People by Joseph B. Thoburn and Muriel H. Wright; Volume IV; Lewis Historical Publishing Company, Inc. New York, 1929; transcribed by Vicki Bryan)

JOHN W. SCOTT. A lawyer of wide experience and a jurist whose knowledge of the law and strict impartiality have won him the respect of the entire State, John W. Scott has been county judge at Duncan, Oklahoma, for the past several terms, administering justice with true wisdom and fearless integrity.

Judge Scott was born in Texas, on January 28, 1870, a son of H. B. and S. C. (White) Scott, the father a rancher in that State. Judge Scott's grand-father served in the American cause during the Mexican War, and received eight thousand acres in Texas as a land grant. Both of his parents are now deceased and of the ten children only three are now living.

John W. Scott, of this record, received his education in Texas schools, and following graduation from the State University, Austin, Texas, he took up the practice of law. In the early years of his career he was county attorney of Lampasas County, Texas, removing later to Belton where he practiced until 1910. Judge Scott was very successful in his profession, building up a wide local following and scoring many notable victories in the courts for the causes which he espoused. For some time, however, he had considered moving to Oklahoma, being much impressed with the opportunities which the territory offered and in 1910 located in Pauls Valley, Oklahoma, and later came to Duncan, in 1921, where he continued legal work. Again he was quick to win the confidence of those who came to consult him, and through a period of years the demands on his
services constantly increased. His knowledge of legal principles and court procedures was everywhere recognized, and in 1924 he was honored by the electorate in being chosen judge of Stephens County. Judge Scott has proved himself ideally qualified for this important post by temperament, knowledge and experience, and since 1924 he has been continuously reelected to the county bench. His services have been of the greatest value in a constructive reading of the law, and the value of his presence as a member of the county judiciary has been abundantly proved.

Judge Scott is affiliated, fraternally, with the Free and Accepted Masons, in which order he is a member of Valley Lodge, No. 6, a member of Pauls Valley Chapter, No. 82, of Royal Arch Masons, and of Eastern Star, No. 185. He is also a member of all bodies of the Ancient Accepted Scottish Rite, including the thirty-second degree of the Consistory. Judge Scott has been active in other phases of Duncan life, and aside from his legal work he owns a fine farm of four hundred and eighty acres.

In 1894, John W. Scott married Stella Hambrick, and they became the parents of two children: 1) Orrin C, born at Lampasas, October 30, 1895, educated in Wedemyer Academy, Belton, Texas; is manager of the Western Union Telegraph Company, at Tulsa, Oklahoma. During the World War he volunteered in the service and was assigned to the Signal Corps and stationed at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas. He married, at Chickasha, Oklahoma, September 25, 1920, Rosa A. Crowley, and they have one daughter. 2) Carl W., who died at the age of seven years. Mrs. Scott died on May 9, 1924, and on November 14, 1925, Judge Scott married Mrs. Myrtle Taylor, of Wichita Falls, Texas.
(Source: Oklahoma, A History of the State and its People by Joseph B. Thoburn and Muriel H. Wright; Volume IV, Lewis Historical Publishing Company, Inc. New York 1929; transcribed by Vicki Bryan)


Raised on a farm in the South, where he remained for about thirty years, William L. Scott, of Marlow, widened the horizon of his labors at time elapsed, and today is the owner of a fine stock farm and one of the leading citizens of this district of Oklahoma. His success was the result of hard work and intelligent application of acknowledged principles, together with a native ambition and industry that could not be denied. Mr. Scott has never been content with anything less than the best and to this end has brought to his work many original ideas that have proved profitable to himself and valuable to the general prosperity. No farm on this section of the State is a better illustration of what may be accomplished by intelligent effort than his broad acres, no citizen is more entitled to the esteem in which he is held than William L. Scott.

He was born in Alabama, December 27, 1861, a son of John M. and Eliza Ann (Steely) Scott, and is one of six children of his parents, three of whom are deceased. He acquired his elementary education in the common schools of the district in which he was born and worked on the home farm until 1892, when he came to Oklahoma and located at Lexington, where he purchased a farm and worked it for ten years. He then sold and removed to Comanche County, where he bought one hundred and sixty acres of prairie land, cultivated it to a high point and again sold at a satisfactory profit. The results of the sale were put into two hundred and forty acres of land near Nellie, which he worked for three years and again sold and removed to Grady County. He was intent upon the accumulation of sufficient funds to purchase a large property and with this end in view sold the Grady County land and bought the farm he now owns near Marlow. It comprises five hundred and ninety-seven acres, all highly improved, and he makes a specialty of fine-grade stock-raising. Mr. Scott served on the School Board for seven years.

William L. Scott married twice: (first), in 1882, Sarah Cosia, and they became parents of nine children: Ella, married J. W. Johnson; Ernest; C. A.; Josiah; Letitia, married Carl Halloway; Anna Lee, married Andrew Van Beber; Hazel, married C. B. Wetson; Charles Roy; and Gladys, a teacher in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Mrs. Scott died March 16, 1900, and he married (second) Sally Richardson, of Alabama, and they are the parents of three children: Willie, a student at the University of Oklahoma; Lewis, attending high school at Marlow; and Florence, attending Junior High School at Marlow.

(Source: Oklahoma, A History of the State and Its People, by Joseph B. Thoburn and Muriel H. Wright, Volume IV; Lewis Historical Publishing Company, Inc. New York, 1929; transcribed by Susan Geist)

LLOYD ASHLAND SIEVER—A pioneer druggist at Marlow in the days of the Indian Territory, Lloyd Ashland Siever lived through the first great period of the new State's growth, and by his useful life of service contributed to the up building of his own community.  He was a leader in the civic life of the city, an active supporter of every good movement.  As the local paper wrote at the time of his death:  "His life and character are indelibly written upon the hearts of the people of this vicinity."

Mr. Siever was born December 14, 1867, in West Virginia, a son of Charles M. and Harriet Siever, of that State.  His father was a farmer by occupation, engaging in agricultural pursuits, and a veteran of the Civil War.  During the conflict between the States he served as a private in the Northern Army and was slightly wounded in action.

When he was a very small boy Mr. Siever removed with his parents to Ohio, and there obtained his preliminary education, attending grammar and high school.  Then the family continued its westward migration, traveling to the plains of Kansas in 1882.  The boy, who was fifteen at the time, resumed his academic training in the University of Kansas, and lived in that State until 1898 when he went to Texas.  By this time he had determined to enter the drug business, and established a store at Alford, Texas, which he operated for two years.  He had been largely impressed, however, by the opportunities which the Indian Territory offered to men of initiative, who were willing to work for the advancement of the section that they might share in its ultimate prosperity, and in 1900 he came to Marlow.  Here he established the first drug business of the city, which he built to prosperous proportions, through the excellence of his products and service.  The community was glad to avail itself of the splendid drug service which he was always at pains to maintain, and through a period of years his enterprise expanded in scope and size.  Later, Mr. Siever built the present quarters of the store„ and until the day of his death he gave his time and attention to this work.

He was a leader in every way in building up the city, not only an outstanding business man of finest progressive type, but an active supporter of every good cause.  In spite of the demands upon him, Mr. Siever never neglected his civic duty, and he was always anxious to promote the best interests of the community and its people.  Such lives as his are rare in any circle and they can ill be spared.  In addition to his drug business Mr. Siever owned a considerable amount of city property, and two fine farms in the vicinity, of one hundred and twenty acres.  All these properties were willed to Mrs. Siever.  Mr. Siever supported Republican policies and candidates for the most part, while with his family he worshipped in the faith of the Presbyterian church.  He held membership in the Retail Druggist Association of Oklahoma.

Lloyd Ashland Siever married, on June 14, 1911, at Marlow, Ada F. Price, daughter of Reuben Lee and Sarah Elizabeth Price.  Mr. Price was a manufacturer of wagons in Ardmore, Indian Territory, from 1889 until his retirement in the early years of the twentieth century.  He was a veteran of the Civil War, volunteering for service in the Southern cause in Louisiana at the age of seventeen, and enlisting as a member of the famous Louisiana Tigers.  The Price family is closely allied to that of General Robert E. Lee.  Mr. and Mrs. Siever became the parents of two children:  1. Lloyd P., born March 14, 1912.  2. Mary A., born November 19, 1921.  The family residence in Marlow is situated at No. 201 North Fourth Street.

Mr. Siever's death occurred in this city in 1926, and brought great sorrow to the wide circle of his friends and acquaintances.  Judge Siever, as he was familiarly known, had won a secure place in the deep affections of the community, whose members in every walk of life paid tribute to his life and character.  The following lines from a local paper well express the universal sentiment.

On Tuesday afternoon of last week the messenger of death again visited the community and carried away one of our old residents, Mr. L. A. Siever, a veteran druggist, a kind neighbor and true friend. . . .  He had lived in Marlow for twenty-six years, and was widely known for his rugged honesty and for his lofty Christian character.  He had a quiet, gentle dignity so fitting and becoming a perfect gentleman.

In speaking of others he seemed never to give way to the frailty so common with the human family of criticising his neighbors.  His life ran long as quietly and evenly as the silver stream of a beautiful river gliding along toward the sea of eternity, with many more silent eddies than roaring cataracts.

He loved the church, was faithful to his vows and trusted in God with a childlike simplicity.  As a husband he was true, loyal, and affectionate; as a father he was kind, patient and indulgent; as a friend, true and dependable.  He, while passing along the highway of life, made friends of all with whom he came in contact.  His life has been a benediction to the people of this community. . . .

We will miss him on the street; his chair will be vacant at his home; his pew will be empty at the church; his family will feel an unutterable void.  Let us cherish his memory and emulate his example.  Let us live that we can be with him through the ceaseless ages of deathless eternity.

Source: Oklahoma, A History of the State and its People, by Joseph B. Thoburn and Muriel H. Wright, Volume IV: Lewis Historical Publishing Company, Inc., New York, 1929; transcribed by Mary Saggio)

RAY O. SUTHERLAND. A native of Texas, but a resident of Oklahoma since his childhood, Mr. Sutherland has been educated in the public schools and in the colleges of Oklahoma. Ever since he has completed his own education, he has been engaged in educating others, following in this respect in the footsteps of his father. After having taught for a number of years in different schools of Stephen County, he was elected county superintendent of schools, with headquarters at Duncan, a position for which he is especially qualified as the result of his long and careful training and of his wide experience. Mr. Sutherland is exceptionally well-liked both by his pupils and his associates and also enjoys to an unusual degree the respect and confidence of the community at large.

Ray O. Sutherland was born in Collin County, Texas, September 4, 1891, a son of Spencer N. and Leitha (Shaw) Sutherland. His father, who was born in Kentucky, has spent his life in educational work and in 1902 came to Oklahoma, settling at Comanche, later moving to Ringling, where he now resides. Mr. Sutherland's mother was born in Alabama and died in 1909. Mr. and Mrs. Spencer N. Sutherland were the parents of eight children: 1) Ray O., of whom further. 2) Winnie, who married O. T. Taliferro, of Empire, Oklahoma. 3) A son, who died in infancy. 4) Chester, a resident of Cotton County, Oklahoma. 5) Fitzhugh Lee, a resident of Stephen County, Oklahoma. 6) Ross, a resident of Wellington, Texas. 7) Cleo, a resident of Healton, Oklahoma. 8) A son, who died in infancy.

Roy O. Sutherland was educated in the public schools of Stephen County, and then continued his studies at the Central State College, Edmond, Oklahoma County. In 1922 he took up teaching, teaching for one year in the Meridian High School, near Comanche. Next he taught for two years in the Diamond District School and then for four years in the Corum School, near Comanche. In 1928 he was elected county superintendent of schools for Stephen County, his election indicating how highly he was regarded in Stephen County as an educator and how greatly he was liked by his fellow-citizens. Mr. Sutherland is a Mason. In politics he is a supporter of the Democratic
party, while his religious affiliations are with the Baptist church.

Mr. Sutherland married, April 25, 1911, Verna Dayton, a daughter of Herbert and Lillie (Howe) Dayton. Mrs. Sutherland's father is a native of New Hampshire, her mother of Missouri. The Dayton family came to Oklahoma in 1893, locating at Perry, Noble County. Besides Mrs. Sutherland, Mr. and Mrs. Dayton are the parents of three other children: Elmer Dayton of Perry, LeRoy Dayton of Perry, and Edna Dayton, now deceased. Mr. and Mrs. Sutherland are the parents of two children: Harold Arlis and Fern Sutherland.
(Source: Oklahoma, A History of the State and its People by Joseph B. Thoburn and Muriel H. Wright; Volume IV, Lewis Historical Publishing Company, Inc. New York 1929; transcribed by Vicki Bryan)


From a one-room log cabin, fourteen feet square, to a beautiful home surrounded by sixteen acres of lawns and dotted with trees and flowers and an additional farm close by of seventy-seven fertile acres, is the result of hard work and applied intelligence on the part of R. O. Thompson, retired merchant of Marlow. Oklahoma boasts no better example of productive citizen than Mr. Thompson, who first established himself in business in Marlow in 1893, and successfully conducted his enterprise for fifteen years, removing for a time and later returning to live at ease from the well-earned products of an industrious life. His example is worthy of emulation, for it is the productive unit of a community that helps to make up the whole machine that operates to promote the prosperity of all within its influence. Mr. Thompson is not only one of our most substantial citizens, but one of the most popular, looked upon with admiration for his works and esteem for his fine personal qualities, with hosts of loyal friends and a State-wide acquaintance that applauds the results of his industry.

He was born in Smith County, Texas, December 6, 1856, a son of one of nine children of John T. and Mary Jane (Kerr) Thompson. Both his parents were natives of Mississippi, from which State they removed to Texas in 1849. The father entered the Confederate Army for service in the Civil War and was killed in action. His widow continued to conduct the Texas farm and in 1891 came to Oklahoma, where her death occurred.

Their son, R. O. Thompson, received a common school education in Texas and upon attaining his majority engaged in farming until 1893, when he established a grocery business in Marlow and conducted it for fifteen years, then disposing of the property and going to the Rio Grande Valley, where he became the owner of a fruit farm, cultivating oranges, lemons, limes and figs. He lived there for five years, prospering to such extent that he was able to return to Marlow and purchase the estate upon which he now lives in retirement, located within one mile of the town. He is a member of the Nazarene church.

R. O. Thompson married, in 1887, Martha L. Calhoun, daughter of C. W. and Frances (Griffin) Calhoun, natives of Mississippi, who removed to Oklahoma, where both died. Martha was her father’s constant companion on his Texas ranch and was one of the finest range riders in the Southwest when a girl. She and her husband adopted three children: 1. Tommie, married Clyde Barbee. 2. Bennie Lee, married Zara Blankispys. 3. Charles W.

(Source: Oklahoma, A History of the State and Its People, by Joseph B. Thoburn and Muriel H. Wright, Volume IV; Lewis Historical Publishing Company, Inc. New York, 1929; transcribed by Susan Geist)

James Osman Wharton, M. D.
While building up a successful practice as a physician and surgeon at Duncan during the past ten years, Dr. Wharton's name has also become known over the state at large in medical circles through his service on the State Board of Medical Examiners, and his service and attainments are such as to give him rank among the best representatives of the medical fraternity in Oklahoma.
James Osman Wharton was born at Russellville, Arkansas, October 15, 1879, a son of Dr. J. T. and Kate (Williamson) Wharton. The Wharton family has been one of distinction in this country since it came from England prior to the Revolutionary war and settled in Virginia. Dr. J. T. Wharton was born in Louisville, Kentucky, in 1840, and died at Duncan, Oklahoma, in 1911. Both before and after the Civil war he studied medicine at the Eclectic Medical Institute of Cincinnati, and was in practice for many years in the State of Arkansas. In 1889 he became the pioneer physician at Duncan in the Indian Territory, and lived there and practiced until his death. He was a member of the Methodist Episcopal Church and the Masonic fraternity. His wife, a native of Arkansas, is still living at Duncan. Some mention should be made of their ten children. Minnie, the oldest, is the wife of T. J. Smith, who is in the lumber and timber business at Guatemala City in Guatemala; Jesse Lawrence is a graduate of the Memphis Hospital Medical College and a practicing physician at Salina, Oklahoma; Susie May married W. F. Angel, in the insurance business at Collinsville, Oklahoma; Dr. James O. is the fourth in age; John Thomas is a graduate of the Bennett Medical College at Chicago and a physician and surgeon at Ketchum, Oklahoma; Cloyd W. Is bookkeeper for the Caddo Cotton Oil Company at Caddo, Oklahoma; Alonzo is clerk of the post office at Duncan; Bettie, a twin sister of Alonzo, married Guy C. Short, a member of the Duncan Hardware Company; Annie is the wife of Carl Erymire, a jeweler at Fort Sumner, New Mexico; Sydney Phillip is connected with the drug business at El Reno, Oklahoma.
James O. Wharton has lived at Duncan the greater part of his life since he was ten years of age. Following his graduation from the Duncan High School with the class of 1899 he became a farmer, and was engaged in looking after a herd of cattle seven miles southeast of Duncan until 1901. His ambition was for a profession, and he followed in the footsteps of his father in his choice. In 1903-04 he attended the Memphis Hospital Medical College, and spent the years 1905-06 in the Physio-Medical College at Dallas, Texas, where he was graduated in the class of 1906 with the degree M. D. He began practice at Duncan but during the years 1907-08-09 was located at Chickasha, with which exception his practice has been confined to the Duncan community. His offices are in the City Drug Store Building on Main street. Besides the large private practice which has come to him he has served for the past five years as city physician of Duncan, and for the past four years has been a member of the State Board of Medical Examiners. He is a member of the County and State Medical Societies and the American Medical Association, and has served as secretary and treasurer of the State Association of Physio-Medical Physicians and Surgeons in Oklahoma.
Dr. Wharton is a republican in politics, and a member of the Presbyterian Church. In Mistletoe Lodge No. 17 of the Knights of Pythias in Duncan he is a past chancellor and is now serving as chancellor, and other fraternal relations are with Duncan Camp No. 515, Woodmen of the World, with Grove No. 33 of the Woodmen Circle, with the Modern Order of Pratorians, and ho is also active in the Duncan Chamber of Commerce.
As Chickasha, Oklahoma, in 1908, Dr. Wharton married Miss Oma Guthridge, whose father, Reuben Guthridge, is a farmer at Cement, Oklahoma. Dr. and Mrs. Wharton have one daughter, Winifred Jewell, who was born December 18, 1913.
[Source: A Standard History of Oklahoma Volume 4 By Joseph Bradfield Thoburn - Submitted by a Friend of Free Genealogy]


As an educator, a soldier and a business man, Herbert Etsal Wrinkle, now Superintendent of Schools at Duncan, has displayed a high order of ability. Especially has he won fame in Oklahoma for the work he has done for its schools, his experience in this State having been extensive and most satisfactory in the several centers where he has functioned in roles of leadership. It is fortunate for the people of this district that Mr. Wrinkle preferred teaching to a business career, for they have in him an instructor and an organizer of educational systems that are progressive and important. He is a man of fine presence, easily acquiring friends and attaining a popularity among those with whom he labors to promote the school system and facilitate the work of the students and pupils who come under his guidance and care. At the same time he is vitally interested in all civic affairs, since they are naturally linked in close form with his own immediate activities, all of which are of the utmost importance to the community. The appreciation in which he is held by the people of Duncan is illustrated by the fact that he has been reelected for his third term as Superintendent of Schools for the district.

Born at Hazel Green Missouri, he is a son of W. D. and Rosa (Lee) Wrinkle, and is the eldest of four children. His brother, Everett M., is manager of a lumber yard at Gary, Oklahoma, another brother, Milan A., is assistant manager of the Long Bell Lumber Company of West Tulsa, and his sister, Elva Lamoine, is the wife of Paul J. Iliff, of Tulsa.

Herbert E. Wrinkle began his education in the rural schools of Missouri, graduated from high school and then took two years at the Southeastern Teachers’ College, graduating in 1915. He came to Oklahoma to become Superintendent of Schools at Welch, where his parents at present reside, and remained there for two years, when he entered the Army for service during the World War. He was commissioned a first lieutenant in the Eighth Field Artillery and sent overseas with the American Expeditionary Forces in August, 1918. He saw no active service there, owing to the sudden conclusion of hostilities with the signing of the Armistice, and was returned to the United States in February, 1919, when he was honorably mustered out. He now holds a commission as a captain in the Officers’ Reserve Corps. He entered the service of Swift and Company, of St. Louis, Missouri, as assistant employment manager, but remained with that house only six months, when he felt the call of the schools and returned to Welch as superintendent of its school system. This position he retained for two years. He then took a year’s leave to attend Oklahoma University, where he completed studies necessary to the degree of Bachelor of Arts and then took a post-graduate course and received the degree of Master of Arts. He was called to Comanche, where he served as Superintendent of Schools for four years, and followed this term in a similar post at Healton, later responding to calls Duncan, where he still functions as head of the school system. He is a member and director or the Rotary Club, member of the Chamber of Commerce and of the American Legion. In religion he is a Methodist, where he teaches the Men’s Bible Class, and while living in Comanche and Healton was superintendent of the Methodist Episcopal Sunday schools of those places. He belongs to the college fraternity of Phi Delta Kappa. He is a member and has been Junior Warden of the Free and Accepted Masons, and is also affiliated with the Consistory, of Guthrie, Ancient Accepted Scottish Rite Masons; and with India Temple, of Oklahoma City, Ancient Arabic Order Nobles of the Mystic Shrine.

Herbert Etsal Wrinkle married, May 29, 1918, Mary Vesta Lane, of White Plains, Missouri, and they are the parents of three children: Geraldine Marie, Charlotte Lee, and LaVita, five, three, and two years of age, respectively.

(Source: Oklahoma, A History of the State and Its People, by Joseph B. Thoburn and Muriel H. Wright, Volume IV; Lewis Historical Publishing Company, Inc. New York, 1929; transcribed by Susan Geist)

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