Biography of Edgar N. Ratcliffe
Edgar N. Ratcliffe was born March 5, 1857, at Hillsborough, Texas, the fourth son of James T. Ratcliffe, a leading lawyer of Hillsborough, and Miss Whiteside, daughter of Mr. Whiteside, a well known merchant and silversmith of Ashville, North Carolina. Edgar attended public school until fifteen years of age, after which he entered Trinity University, Tehuacana, Texas, where he remained until eighteen years of age, when he became a clerk for Alfred Young, of that town, remaining until he was twenty, and then established a mercantile business for himself, which he conducted until 1884, and, selling out, removed to Vinita, Indian Territory, where he started a grocery store, and in 1888 extended his business to general merchandise, which he carries on at present. In September 1881, Mr. Ratcliffe married Miss Era Foster, daughter of Robert Foster (a large stockman from La Grange, Bastrop County, Texas) and Jane Fields, of a leading Cherokee family. By this marriage they have four children, Fred Foster, born May 28, 1884; James Wilton, born September 23, 1886; Robert Furnis, born June 23, 1889, and Mary Era, born September 25, 1891. Mrs. Ratcliffe is a graduate of Trinity College, Tehuacana, Texas, and is a lady of many accomplishments. Mr. Ratcliffe carries a stock of $18,000 in general merchandise, and does the most extensive business at the present time in Vinita. The store building is also his property, besides 200 acres of farm in cultivation. He owns, in partnership with Mr. Skinner, the Vinita roller mills, and he is also owner of five business and residence lots, a fine residence and a good deal of land in Texas. He is vice-president, and was chief organizer of the First National Bank of Vinita, capital $50,000. Mr. Ratcliffe is a man of fine intellectual appearance, gentlemanly in manner and address, and is possessor of rare business qualifications. He is a progressive man in the proper sense, and very popular in Vinita.