S. B. Ward, a pioneer farmer and stock raiser of Oklahoma residing near Ramona, in Washington county, is conducting his operations on an extensive scale and in the management of his business interests he displays marked executive ability, firm determination and sound judgment.
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A native of West Virginia, he was born January 21, 1860, and his parents, Simon and Savannah (Hammer) Ward, were also born in that state. In 1881 they removed to Missouri, settling near Appleton City, where the father engaged in farming and in that year he planted five hundred acres to corn which averaged between sixty and seventy bushels to the acre. In 1890 he came to Indian Territory, settling on a farm belonging to Chief Bluejacket, in Rogers county, and this property lie continued to cultivate and improve until his demise, which occurred in 1902, while the mother passed away in 1910.
In the common schools of West Virginia, S. B. Ward acquired his education and in 1881, when a young man of twenty-one years, be accompanied his parents on their removal to Missouri, where he followed agricultural pursuits independently until 1882. In 1887 he came to Indian Territory and for a year operated the F. M. Crowell place, situated on the line of the Frisco Railroad, between Vinita and Afton, while during the following year he cultivated land on Sabin creek, east of Vinita. His next removal took him to Pawhuska, in Osage county, where he devoted three years to government work, afterward operating a farm on Clear creek for a similar period. He then secured a lease of a farm of one hundred acres in exchange for the improvements which he would make on it and for seven years was thus active, after which he removed to Bluejacket, in Rogers county, where he conducted a store for three years and also cultivated a farm. On the termination of that period he returned to Osage county, where for eight years he engaged in farming, also working in the oil fields during that time.
He next bought a tract of one hundred and fifty acres in Washington county and on the property he erected a substantial house of nine rooms, which he sold in 1914, together with eighty acres of the land, the Prairie Pipe Line Company becoming owners of the property. He retains seventy acres of the original purchase.
He is also the owner of a farm of three hundred and fifty acres, situated halfway between Ochelata and Ramona, in Washington county, on which he makes his home, and not only cultivates all of this land but also additional acreage, which he rents. He has a fine orchard containing two hundred trees of various varieties or fruit and he also grows grapes. He raises considerable stock, shipping a carload to the market each year, and he also has thoroughbred Leghorn chickens, selling thirty-five dollars worth of butter and eggs each week up to the 1st of September of the present year (1921). He has a good comfortable home on his place and substantial outbuildings and has added many improvements to his property, while in the cultivation of his fields he utilizes the most modern and progressive methods, which have resulted in the attainment of well earned prosperity.
On December 13, 1883, Mr. Ward was united in marriage to Miss Ida Farrell of West Virginia, the ceremony taking place in Butler, Bates county, Missouri. They have become the parents of eight children : Gurney married Gus Redeker of Osage county, and they have six children, Blanche Susanna, Gus, Carl, Cleo, William and Claude Alfred; Cleophas wedded Rosie Redeker and they also have a family of six children, Willis, Cleo, Roman, Wayne, Rose and Ida Belle; Charles married Nettie Thompson, by whom he has three children, Helen, Hazel and Charles; Clarence chose for his wife Miss Belle Anderson and they have become the parents of three children, Rose, Junior-and Fred Marshall; Gertrude is the wife of Urm Park and the mother of two sons, Frank Henry and Roy. The younger members of the family; Floria, Claude and S. B., Jr., are still at home.
On the 1st of September, 1.921, Mr. and Mrs. Ward returned to West Virginia, which the former had not revisited since early manhood, while the latter had not seen her. brothers and sisters for a period of thirty-seven years. They made the journey in a Ford car without mishap and thoroughly enjoyed the outing.
They are familiar with all of the hardships and privations of pioneer life, which they have borne cheerfully and uncomplainingly, and are now reaping the rewards of unremitting industry and persevering effort. Their conversation spans the past in interesting reminiscences and as pioneer residents of the state they are accorded the respect and goodwill of an extensive circle of friends.