James W. McSpadden was born October 21, 1848, in Belcher County, Alabama, the eldest son of Rev. T. K. B. McSpadden, who came to the country and joined the Indian Mission Conference held at Fort Gibson in 1870. The reverend gentleman devoted himself to Christian labors for seven years and died in 1877 beloved and respected by all who knew him. The subject of this sketch attended neighborhood school until 1861, when he accompanied his father (a lieutenant in the Confederate army) all through the campaign. After the war James was sent to the Phoenix Academy, North Alabama, until he was twenty-one years of age, when he became clerk in a store at Harrisonville, Missouri. Here he remained two years, coming to Tahlequah, Cherokee Nation, where his father was residing. After a short time spent in the Cherokee capital, the subject of our sketch returned to Missouri and there remained but twelve months, when he again visited Tahlequah and married Miss Annie Thompson, daughter of Dr. J. L. Thompason, April 18, 1872. Returning to Missouri, Mr. McSpadden purchased an interest in a flouring mill, which he disposed of in one year and returned to the nation, where he worked at different points as salesman for nine years, after which he and Mr. Evans purchased the Tahlequah Flouring Mills, and in April, 1891, he purchased his partner’s interest, and is now conducting the business alone. Mr. McSpadden has four children, Florence Wilson, Richard Vance, Mary Jane, and James W., junior. His wife died September 20, 1891. Mr. McSpadden is five feet ten inches in height and weighs 130 pounds. He is a man of good education and good business qualifications, is very popular in the community. His mill property is worth about $6,000, while his residence cost $2,000. He is also owner of town property to the amount of $800 or thereabouts. Mr. McSpadden is a Mason in the Royal Arch Chapter, and a member of the Methodist Episcopal Church, South.
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