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Among those who have made substantial contribution to the agricultural development of Oklahoma the Rhoades family is deserving of special mention, for its members have been continuously engaged in the cultivation of the soil of this state for the past thirty-three years, transforming wild and unproductive land into rich and fertile fields through their arduous labors and progressive spirit.
G. A. Rhoades, a member of this family, was born in Kansas, April 16, 1881, of the marriage of John and Sarah (Hardwick) Rhoades, both of whom were natives of Missouri. In 1888 they came to Indian Territory, and the father leased land four miles south of Skiatook, on the Osage and Cherokee line, which he cultivated for four years, and then moved to Bird creek, southeast of Skiatook, where he resided for three years. He next took up his home on Turkey creek, west of Skiatook, where he spent four years, and then located on Big Hominy creek, removing at the end of three years to Wild Horse creek, south of his previous residence, continuing there for a similar length of time. From that point he went to Hominy Post, where he lived for a year, passing the next four years in the Turkey creek oil fields, and the family then purchased their present place of eighty-two and a half acres, situated five miles west of Vera, in Washington county, on an exceptionally fine spot on the highway between Skiatook and Pawhuska, this road constituting the dividing line between Osage and Washington counties. When they took up their residence upon this land in 1916 it was still in a state of un-development, being covered with scrub trees, and through arduous and unremitting labor.
G. A. Rhoades has succeeded in clearing a large portion of the tract with his father’s assistance. He has made the soil rich and productive, his principal crop being corn, which runs about thirty-five bushels to the acre, and he also raises some hogs and cattle for the market. He has erected upon the place a substantial four-room house and has also added many other, improvements, converting it into one of the best farms in the neighborhood.
Mr. Rhoades’ parents also reside upon the farm, in a separate dwelling, and both are active and in good health, the father having reached the age of seventy-eight years, and the mother still attends to all of her household duties. Their family numbered six children: Will, who is still at home; Emma, who is married and resides in the Osage district; Kate, who is married and lives in Arkansas City, Kansas; and Bert and Myrtle, twins.
G. A. Rhoades, the fourth in order of birth, was married in 1903 to Miss Susie Newell, a daughter of John and Mary Newell, the former now residing at Sand Springs west of Tulsa, while the latter is deceased. Mr. and Mrs. Rhoades have become the parents of seven children: Maudie, Ira, John, Zeona, Garland, Estelle and Alleine, all of whom are attending school except the three youngest.
Mr. Rhoades brings to his farming and stock-raising activities a progressive and open mind, being keenly interested in all modern developments in his chosen field of labor. His standards of farming are high and as a member of one of the pioneer families of the state he is accorded the respect and esteem of an extensive circle of friends.