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The growth of a city does not depend so much upon its machinery of government or even upon the men who fill public offices as upon those who foster trade relations and promote industrial activity. In this connection H. L. Bryant is deserving of more than passing notice, for as merchant and financier he has been a dominant factor in promoting the development and up building of Bartlesville, which numbers him among its foremost citizens.
Mr. Bryant is a native of Illinois. He was born at Hillsboro, December 20, 1864, his parents being Mr. and Mrs. L. D. Bryant, the latter now deceased. On the 5th of August, 1899, he came to Oklahoma, being at that time thirty-five years of age, and after residing for a short time at Ardmore removed to Bartlesville, where he has since made his home. He entered mercantile circles, becoming a member of the firm of Bradley & Bryant, which for ten years conducted one of the leading dry goods stores in the town. They then sold their interests to Harry Degen, who is operating the establishment under the name of Degen’s Department Store.
Mr. Bryant aided in forming the Bartlesville Wholesale Grocery Company, which through his influence was induced to locate here, and in association with Frank C. Kelley and Miss Blanche Bolthrope, he organized the Famous Dry Goods Company, of which he is manager and financial head, their store being located in the Bryant block on Dewey avenue. This is one of the high class shops of the town, dealing in ladies’ ready-to-wear clothing, and owing to Mr. Bryant’s thorough knowledge of the principles of merchandising and capable management the business has become one of large proportions. With others he organized the People’s Savings & Loan Association, of which he is president, and in July, 1920, in company with others, he established the Exchange National Bank, of which he is now serving as vice president, and is thus promoting the financial interests of his community. He has likewise erected many of the finest business structures in the town, including the Bradley & Bryant, the Bryant & Klote and the Bryant buildings, while he also assisted in financing the erection of the Masonic Temple building. He possesses those qualities which make for leadership and he is essentially a member of the class of doers, gifted with initiative and strong purpose.
Mr. Bryant is the owner of a beautiful home at No. 1100 Jennings avenue, in which he resides with his father, his sister, Mrs. Mary S. Boals, and his niece, Miss Eva Boals. He is a thirty-second degree Mason and endeavors to fulfill in his life the teachings of that order regarding mutual helpfulness and brotherly kindness. To the energetic nature and strong mentality of such men as Mr. Bryant are due the rapid development and every increasing prosperity of this favored section of Oklahoma.
His activities have covered a broad scope and in every sphere in which he has operated he has left an indelible impress through his not able ability and tireless energy, which never falls short of the attainment of its purpose. His contribution to the world’s work has been an important one and Bartlesville is fortunate in claiming him as a citizen.