Biography of Lucien Webster Buffington
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With the history of progress in Vinita the name of Lucien Webster Buffington is closely associated and in his demise, which occurred in this city on the 3d of December, 1919, Oklahoma lost one of its honored pioneers and his community one of its oldest and best beloved citizens. He was one of the early settlers of this part of the state and his industry and enterprise were factors in general development and improvement as well as in the attainment of individual success. His birth occurred at Beattie’s Prairie, then in the Cherokee Nation, in Indian Territory, but now a part of Delaware County, Oklahoma, on the 15th of August, 1867, and he was there reared and educated. In 1897 he became one of the organizers of the Vinita National Bank, of which he was made Vice President, acting in that capacity for some time, and for six years prior to his demise had filled the office of President. He was a man of marked business integrity and ability and his initiative spirit and powers of administration enabled him to build up one of the leading financial institutions in this part of the state. Broadening the scope of his activities, he acquired large holdings in land, was one of the directors of the First National Bank of Chelsea, Oklahoma, and became financially interested in oil companies and other important corporations throughout the state. He was quick to see and utilize an opportunity for advancement and his efforts were resultant factors in whatever he undertook.
On the 4th of April, 1886, in Vinita, Mr. Buffington was united in marriage to Miss Nannie Gunter, a member of a prominent family of this city. He was a member of the Hillcrest Country Club and his political allegiance was given to the Democratic Party. He was a leading figure in the affairs of the Cherokee Nation and was one of the members of the town-site board. In the early ’80s he had taken up his residence in Vinita, casting in his lot with its earliest settlers, and from that time until his death his aid and cooperation were freely given to every project for the up-building and improvement of his community. His life record is a notable example of successful achievement through individual effort. The conditions of his early life were such as to arouse his self-reliance and independence, developing a strong and vigorous manhood that enabled him to cope with the problems of life and find for them a ready and accurate solution. He was a man who would have been an acquisition to any community, his irreproachable character no less than his achievements giving him a commanding position and compelling his recognition as one destined to lead in anything he undertook.