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Oscar Rice was born in Terrell County, Georgia, August 23, 1865, and was about two years of age when his parents removed to Kansas. He attended the public schools in Fort Scott and after leaving high school he started out as a traveling salesman for the Fort Scott Wholesale Drug Company. He was successfully engaged as traveling representative of that concern until 1910, when he planned and organized The Western Automobile Indemnity Association.
Mr. Rice for many years had been active in the Masonic Fraternity, is an active member of the Scottish Rite and is also a Knight Templar and Mystic Shriner. In 1914 he was Grand Patron of the Order of the Eastern Star. His chief hobby is automobiling. That naturally had made him a promoter of good roads. He was secretary of the Kansas City, Canada, and Gulf Good Roads project, and that had since developed into the Memphis and Jefferson Highway Association, of which Mr. Rice had been secretary since its organization.
On December 19, 1894, at Fort Scott, he married Miss Stella Prager. She was born in Leavenworth, Kansas, daughter of David and Hattie (Briggs) Prager. Her father was one of the pioneer jewelers in Kansas, having a place of business in Lawrence and later at Leavenworth. During the war his entire stock of jewelry was carried away by Quantrell and his raiders when Lawrence was invaded and so many of its inhabitants massacred.