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Coming to Oklahoma during the territorial period in its development, D. C. Hampton is thoroughly familiar with the early history of the state and his memory forms a connecting link between the primitive past with its hardships and privations and the present with all of the advantages and comforts of present-day civilization. He is numbered among the progressive merchants of Bartlesville and his business interests are capably and successfully conducted. He was born in Moultrie County, Illinois, April 30, 1858, of the marriage of Roland Thomas and Ruhama (Howe) Hampton, and in 1866 was taken by his parents to Neodesha, Kansas. In that vicinity the father engaged in farming and it was on his land that the first oil was found in that part of the state. In 1871 the family went to Sedan, Kansas, and there the father followed agricultural pursuits until November, 1874, when he came to Indian Territory, acquiring land ten miles north of the present site of Bartlesville, and this he continued to operate until his demise, which occurred in 1896.
In 1885 his son, D. C. Hampton, moved to a farm six miles west of Bartlesville and improved a tract of one hundred and eighty acres owned by his brother, Harrison. Twelve years later the subject of this review removed to Blue Mound, twelve miles northeast of the town, where for five years he engaged in farming and stock raising, while during the winter season he resided in Caney, Kansas, in order that his children might attend school. In 1903 he went to Arkansas and for five years cultivated a farm in that state, returning to his brother’s place near Bartlesville on the 25th of December, 1908, while later he engaged in the dairy business on Sand creek, three and a half miles southwest of Bartlesville. For five years he was thus occupied and then opened a feed and grocery store in the town. He has been very successful in this field of activity and in 1919 erected his present store building at No. 100 North Santa Fe avenue. He has ever recognized the fact that satisfied customers are the best advertisement and owing to his reasonable prices, progressive business methods and courteous treatment of patrons he is building up a large trade.
In 1885 Mr. Hampton was united in marriage to Miss Hattie Bennett, whose father, E. L. Bennett, was one of the pioneers of Oklahoma, coming to this section of the country in 1880 and cultivating a farm of one hundred and sixty acres for Isaac Keyes, the property being located two miles north of the present site of Bartlesville. No bridges then spanned the streams and few of the settlers had saddles for their horses. Mrs. Hampton became a splendid shot with the rifle and revolver and the bullets for their firearms were made by her father. She is a faithful member of the Methodist church and because of her untiring efforts toward the building of the present fine modern edifice her name is among those inscribed on its cornerstone. Mr. and Mrs. Hampton have become the parents of four sons: A. R., thirty-six years of age, who married Alta Davis of Copan, by whom he has two children, Jack D. and Margaret; Milton Edward, aged thirty-three, who married Ruth Adele McConnell of Seattle, Washington, and has two children, Harriet Ruth and Milton Earle; and Wilson Wade and Dennis, aged, respectively, twenty-eight and twenty-three years.
All of the sons were drafted for the World war and Wilson Wade served for one and a half years in the navy, being assigned to the George Washington, and was stationed for some time at Brest, France.
Personal experience has made Mr. Hampton thoroughly familiar with the various phases of pioneer life in this section of the country. When he first located in Washington county the population consisted mainly of Indians, there being but ten white families in his district, and while the redskins frequently stole his neighbors’ possessions, his family was never molested, owing to the fact that they had always treated the Indians with kindness and consideration. Each year Mr. Hampton planted a portion of the prairie to watermelons and corn, which he raised especially for the red men, and they never forgot his kindness. His life has been an active and useful one, characterized by the wise utilization of his time, talents and opportunities, and his labors have at all times been of a constructive nature, contributing to public progress and prosperity as well as to individual aggrandizement.