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Biography of Rutherford B. Butts

Rutherford B. Butts, member of the bar at Muskogee, is a veteran of two wars and has been a most prominent factor in the field of relief work, of organized charity and of polity. His labors have at all times and along all lines been far-reaching and resultant and his cooperation is regarded as a most effective force in the attainment of desired results. Rutherford B. Butts is a native of Houston, Ohio, born February 18, 1877, and is a son of Jacob A. and Mary M. (Carpenter) Butts, the former a farmer by occupation. During the youthful days of R. B. Butts the family removed to Kansas and there he pursued his education in the public and high schools and in the Art School of the University of Kansas. He afterward became a student in the law department, from which he was graduated in June, 1905, and on the 17th of October of that year he came to Muskogee, where he entered upon the-general practice of law, in which he has continued. He tries all kinds of cases and tries them well and one of the marked characteristics of his law practice is the thoroughness and precision with which he prepares his cases, so that he is never surprised by the unexpected in the courts. His clientage is now extensive and of an important character, his name figuring as counsel for the prosecution or defense in many of the leading cases heard in the courts of the state. The military record of Rutherford B. Butts constitutes a most interesting chapter in his life’s history. For two and a...

Biography of Mrs. Jane Buford

Among the honored pioneer women of Oklahoma is numbered Mrs. Jane Buford, who resides in a beautiful home at No. 102 North Cherokee street in Bartlesville. She is a member of the Delaware tribe of Indians and during her infancy was brought by her parents to Indian Territory at an early period in its settlement. She acquired a thorough knowledge of the English language, in which she converses as fluently as in her native tongue, and as a young woman she was united in marriage to Jacob Wheeler, now deceased. They became the parents of three children: Lena, the eldest in the family, was accorded liberal educational advantages, attending the University at Muskogee and Haskell Institute at Lawrence, Kansas. She is the widow of Dennis Parker and the mother of three children, Geneva Blanche, Edward Job and Leona Marie, all of whom are attending school. Edward Wheeler, the second in order of birth, acquired his education in the schools of Fort Worth, Texas, and Chilocco, Oklahoma, and is still at home. Bryant, who was educated at Lawrence, Kansas, is deceased. All of the family have their allotments of land and receive royalties in oil. Following the demise of her first husband Mrs. Wheeler married Mr. Buford, who has also passed away. Previous to establishing her home in Bartlesville she resided on a large farm within a few miles of the town. Practically her entire life has been passed in this state and she remembers the time when the Indians far outnumbered the white settlers and the land was wild and undeveloped, its rich resources being then undreamed of. She...

Biography of John Downing Benedict

John Downing Benedict was born in Clermont, a suburb of Indianapolis, Indiana, on the 27th of May, 1854, and there began his education in the common schools. Accompanying his parents on their removal to Vermilion county, Illinois , he there worked on a farm during the summer months, while the winter seasons were spent as a student in the Rossville high school. When eighteen years of age he took up the profession of teaching, which he followed through the succeeding five years in the country and village schools. Subsequently he attended the University of Illinois for one year and then began the study of law in Danville, Illinois. In 1881 a vacancy occurred in the office of county superintendent of schools of Vermilion county and his love of educational work prompted him to accept it. He was a pioneer, in the work of grading the rural schools of his state and was a member of the first commission appointed to prepare a uniform course of study for the rural schools of Illinois. This course of study was afterward adopted by several other states, including Kansas and Oklahoma and Indian Territories. After serving as county superintendent of schools for eight years, he was appointed assistant state superintendent of Illinois, with headquarters in Springfield. In this position he was required to write all the official opinions upon questions of school law that arose in the one hundred and two counties of the state, compile the school statistics of the state and conduct meetings of county superintendents in various sections of the state of Illinois for the purpose of explaining the system...

Biography of Robert I. Allen, M. D.

One of the best known surgeons in northeastern Oklahoma is Dr. Robert I. Allen, who was born at Coodys Bluff on the 9th of September, 1877, a son of Dr. R. M. and Mary (Journeycake) Allen. His father was a native of Illinois, in which state he resided until after the close of the Civil war. Upon the outbreak of that war he enlisted in the Federal army and became a member of the medical staff. He was a stretcher bearer at the battles of Lookout Mountain and Missionary Ridge. Dr. R. M. Allen received his medical training at Rush Medical College of Chicago and was a graduate of that institution. He came to Nowata in 1868 and was the first practicing physician here. He was successfully identified with the profession until 1904, when his demise occurred in Nowata. In September, 1868, occurred the marriage of Dr. R. M. Allen to Mary Journeycake, whose uncle, Charlie Journeycake, was the noted chief of the Delaware. Mrs. Allen died January 16, 1922, and was buried beside her husband in Nowata county. In the acquirement of an education Robert I. Allen attended the Cherokee schools and later entered Bacone Indian University and Willie Halsell College at Vinita. Determining upon a medical career, he subsequently enrolled as a student in the Baines Medical College at St. Louis, Missouri, and graduating in 1899, began practice at Centralia, Craig county, this state. Later he removed to Dewey and in 1915 went to Nowata, where he resided until July, 1922, when he removed to Bristow, Oklahoma. He has built up an extensive and lucrative practice and...

Northeastern Oklahoma Biographies

The following biographies were written in 1922 and pertain to “important” men who resided in the Muskogee and northeastern areas of Oklahoma. By important, it should be emphasized that each biography was submitted along with a payment for inclusion in the biographical manuscript. Therefore, anyone who chose not to pay for such a service was often left out of the manuscript. The counties covered by this manuscript include Adair, Cherokee, Craig, Delaware, Mayes, McIntosh, Muskogee, Nowata, Ottawa, Rogers, Sequoyah, Wagoner, and Washington.

Biography of T. D. Cox

For a quarter of a century T. D. Cox has made his home in Vinita and is contributing to the commercial development of his town as a member of the Craig County Motor Company, displaying enterprise, determination and administrative ability in the management of his business interests. He was born in Decatur, Illinois, April 24, 1869, his parents being Aaron and Sarah (Clark) Cox, both of whom were natives of North Carolina. As a young man the father went to Illinois and there engaged in agricultural pursuits. He purchased an old-fashioned “ground hog” separator for threshing his grain, this being the first implement of the kind he had ever seen, and he also engaged in the operation of a sawmill in that state. Subsequently he removed to Kansas, taking up a homestead in Elk county, which he cleared and developed, and he likewise conducted a blacksmith shop at Longton, that state. In 1878 he came to Indian Territory and in association with Jacob Bartles, the founder of Bartlesville, operated a sawmill at Alluwe for a short time, after which he went to Maysville Arkansas, becoming owner of a blacksmith shop and wagon factory. Two years later his property was destroyed by a cyclone and he then established his home in El Dorado, Arkansas, which was just becoming known as a watering place. He opened the first hotel in the town, in addition to which he conducted a sawmill, livery stable and wagon shop, and he was very successful in the management of his various interests. He also took a prominent part in public affairs of the community, serving for...

Biography of Willis Benedict Priestley

The oil industry has been the chief factor in the attainment of the present prosperity and greatness of Oklahoma and the Priestley family, of which Willis Benedict Priestley is a member, has played a conspicuous part in the development of the rich oil fields of the state, being pioneer operators in this field. Willis Benedict Priestley is an alert, energetic and progressive young man and as president of the Tanner Oil Company he is controlling an enterprise of large proportions, proving fully equal to the heavy responsibilities which devolve upon him in this connection. Mr. Priestley was born in Enterprise, Pennsylvania, March 24, 1888, a son of G. C. and Lulu (Ruland) Priestley, both of whom are natives of Maine. The father was born June 11, 1862, and at the early age of seven years he was obliged to abandon his studies, securing the position of errand boy in a Pleasantville store. Subsequently he handled coal for his father, G. C. Priestley, Sr., who was a teaming contractor. When eighteen years of age G. C. Priestley, Jr., became superintendent for the W. B. Benedict Oil Company of Titusville, Pennsylvania, Mr. Benedict being at one time mayor of that place. After filling the position of superintendent for two years Mr. Priestley went to Goodville, Pennsylvania, where he engaged in merchandising, also becoming a lumber operator. In 1898 he became a candidate for the office of treasurer of Warren County but met defeat at the polls. He then moved to Warren, the county seat, and engaged in the lumber business and in the manufacture of furniture under the name of the...

Biography of Le Roy Kershaw

Le Roy Kershaw of Muskogee, well known because of his extensive operations in real estate and perhaps even better known as one of the leading breeders of Aberdeen-Angus cattle in the United States, was born in Elmwood, Illinois, December 6, 1880. He was educated in the University of Illinois, from which he was graduated in June, 1904. In the same year he came to Oklahoma and through the intervening period has resided in this state, being prominently identified with financial and stock raising interests in the southwest. It was he who organized the First National Bank at Morris, Oklahoma, of which he became the president. He also began dealing in farm lands, which he bought and sold. He left Morris in 1909 to remove to Muskogee and through the intervening period he has conducted an extensive real estate business and has become prominently known in connection with the breeding of Aberdeen-Angus cattle. He has the largest herd in the United States, with one exception, and his is certainly the best in the southwest. All of his cattle are full thoroughbred and he raises and sells about three hundred per annum. He has four thousand acres of land, largely situated in Muskogee county. In 1920 he held a large sale of Aberdeen-Angus stock. There has never been another herd of cattle that has shown over as wide an area of country and won so many premiums as that belonging to Mr. Kershaw. In his sale was included Plowman, the champion of champions, with fifty-three championships to his credit, more than any other bull, living or dead; and Twin Burn Pride...

Biography of W. F. Maberry

In the final analysis farming is the basis of prosperity in America. It is the very beginning of the intricate operations which furnish man with food, and among those whose activity in the cultivation of the soil has promoted the development of northeastern Oklahoma, is numbered W. F. Maberry, who resides on a well improved farm in the vicinity of Bartlesville. A native of Missouri, he was born December 12, 1874, and in 1899, when twenty-five years of age, he came to Oklahoma, first locating on Marmon creek, in Nowata county. For two years he engaged in farming in that -locality and then went to Dewey, Washington county, devoting his attention to the operation of fifteen hundred and seventy-five acres of land, situated north of the town, the tract being owned by himself and brother, I. J. Maberry, now deceased. For four years they were thus occupied, at the end of which period the subject of this review purchased a seventy-acre farm eight miles east of Bartlesville, which he has since made his home, and he also has a ranch of two hundred and ten acres on Hogshooter creek and a tract of one hundred acres on Bird creek, situated one and a half miles from Owasso, in Tulsa county, which he leases. He has a fine country home on the Bartlesville-Nowata road and has added many improvements to his place, erecting substantial barns and other necessary outbuildings for the shelter of grain and stock and utilizing the best farm machinery on the market. Working diligently as the years have passed, he has succeeded in bringing his land to...

Biography of George Henry Walker

George Henry Walker occupies a prominent position in business, circles of Muskogee as vice president and general manager of the Osage Cotton Oil Company and has also served as mayor of the city since April, 1920. His birth occurred at Union Springs, Alabama, on the 1st of October, 1872, his parents being Merriott W. and Rexie (Goodwin) Walker, the former a prosperous planter and merchant. After mastering the elementary branches of learning George Henry Walker pursued a high school course in his native town and subsequently attended a business college at Poughkeepsie, New York. When his textbooks were put aside he secured a position as bookkeeper in an oil mill at a salary of sixty dollars per month and he has since been identified with cotton seed oil mill interests. It was in September, 1910, that George Henry Walker came to Muskogee, where he has remained throughout the intervening period of eleven years and has become well known in the oil mill business, being now vice president and general manager of the Osage Cotton Oil Company, which is capitalized for two million dollars and has its home office in Muskogee. The company conducts fourteen mills in Oklahoma, two in Arkansas, one in Louisiana and three in Florida and also operates one hundred cotton gins, the enterprise being one of extensive proportions and increasing importance. Mr. Walker possesses untiring energy, is quick of perception, forms his plans readily and is determined in their execution, and his close application to business and his excellent management have brought to him the high degree of prosperity which is his today. On the 24th...
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