Edward D. Hicks is numbered among Tahlequah’s representative business men and is one whose life record should be a stimulus to the effort and ambition of others. He was born at Fort Gibson, Indian Territory, on the 1st of January, 1866, a son of Daniel R. and Nancy J. (Rider) Hicks.
His grandfather on the paternal side Elijah Hicks, was chief of the Cherokee Nation in Georgia and Indian Territory and died in 1856.
Mr. and Mrs. Hicks came with the immigration of Cherokees in 1837 and 1838 to Indian Territory and the father became a successful farmer and stock raiser. He was influential in political and tribal affairs and for some time acted as United States interpreter. His death occurred in 1883. His wife died in 1866. Edward D. Hicks, whose name initiates this review, was the only child born to their union.
In the acquirement of an education Edward D. Hicks attended the public schools of the Cherokee Nation and in due time enrolled as a student in the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville. Upon the completion of his education he made his initial step into the business world as clerk in a mercantile establishment and after several years in that connection determined to start into business on his own account. He was active in the conduct of a mercantile business until 1895, but in that year organized the Cherokee Telephone Company, operating a line between Tahlequah and Muskogee, and in 1896 local service was established in Tahlequah.
In 1905 the Cherokee Telephone Company was absorbed by the Southwest Bell Telephone Company and Mr. Hicks was retained as manager of the branch at Tahlequah. In early life he realized that, “if you would win success you must be willing to pay the price of earnest, self-denying effort,” and he entered upon his business career closely watching for opportunities, which. he has ever improved to the best advantage. The methods which he has pursued have challenged the admiration and respect of those with whom he has been associated and the energy which he has displayed has won him that recognition which always results in promotion.
In Claremore, this state, in 1885, was celebrated the marriage of Mr. Hicks and Miss Lizzie Musgrove, a daughter of Frank Musgrove, a prominent farmer and cattle man of Claremore. To their union the following children have been born: Jane, who is the widow of J. G. Harnoge of Tahlequah; Clara, now the wife of John R: Ally of Oklahoma City, Oklahoma; Joe, who married Miss Frances Lindsay of Checotah, Oklahoma; William P., who married Miss Margaret Roll; Ed, Jr., a resident of Muskogee, Oklahoma; and Enola, deceased.
The family is affiliated with the Presbyterian church, in which Mr. Hicks is an elder. Since age conferred upon him the right of franchise he has given his political allegiance to the Republican Party and he is at all times ready to do anything for the advancement of the community. He has been a cooperant factor in many movements which have been followed by tangible results for the progress and up building of his home city. During the World war he was quick to lay aside personal interests and devoted a generous part of his time and money to promoting the government’s interests. He was a speaker for the Liberty Loan and Red Cross drives and also chairman of various committees.