Biography of Elijah Hermigine Lerblance

The subject of this sketch was born in March 1836, and is the son of Hermogene Lerblance, a Louisiana Frenchman, and Vicey Gentry, daughter of Elijah Gentry, a white man who married a full-blood Catawba Indian. The subject of this sketch moved from Alabama to the Creek Nation, with his parents, at the age of twelve, after which he attended the Asberry Mission Manual Labor School for a term of fifteen months. At the age of seventeen years he commenced learning the blacksmith trade, and while thus employed he married Miss Bosen, daughter of Amos Bosen, King of the Hitchetee Town. By this marriage he had five children, W. P., born June 17, 1856; F. W., born November 10, 1858; Sarah, born December 10, 1860; W. L., born March 23, 1864; and Jeannette, born July 4, 1866. His wife died a devout Christian and member of the M. E. Church, in 1872. In 1857 Mr. Lerblance moved to Cussetah, where he worked in the government blacksmith shop until the outbreak of the war in 1861, when he joined the Confederate service as a private, was made sergeant in three months, and in 1862 rose to the rank of lieutenant, which office he held until the termination of the war. Afterwards he returned with his family to the farm he had commenced to improve, near the old council grounds, in the Creek Nation, his property consisting of an old wagon, a pair of oxen, two cows and calves, one pig and thirty-five cents in cash. From this time until 1880 he spent his life partly on the farm and partly in the blacksmith shop. In 1881 he embarked in the cattle business with W. E. Gentry, the title of the firm being W. E. Gentry & Co., the result of the partnership at this date being 2,500 head of cattle, one store in Checotah, with a stock of general merchandise amounting to $12,000, one gin at the same place, the house occupied by the druggist, C. G. Moore, at Checotah, as well as about a half interest in the Indian Journal, published at Eufaula. In February 1878, Mr. Lerblance married Miss Nellie Fife, daughter of Job Fife, a farmer and son of Jimmie Fife, of noted fame in Pigott’s History. The surviving issue of this marriage is Francis H., born December 2, 1879; Addie, born September 26, 1882; Howard P., born November 17, 1885, and Lizzie C., born April 29, 1888. Mr. Lerblance owns one of the finest residences in the vicinity of Hitchetee, 200 acres of farm, one square mile of pasture, 400 head of cattle, 50 mules and horses, a large stock of hogs, and a comfortable home in Checotah. Mr. Lerblance served four years as Clerk of Muskogee District and eight years as Supreme Court Clerk. At three different periods he served as District Judge of Muskogee District. He was once elected National Treasurer, but declined to serve. In 1891 he filled the unexpired term of Samuel Bradley, in the House of Kings, who died in May of that year. Mr. Lerblance was opposed to the sale of Oklahoma, fearing it would cause the opening of the entire Indian Territory. He thought it would be wiser to use it for grazing purposes, and thereby secure funds sufficient to satisfy the United States Government for her claim on said lands, originating under treaty of 1866. Judge Lerblance is a gentleman of good address, pleasant manners, and intellectually far above the average. As a businessman he has few superiors, as will become plain to those who read his record. He also bears an excellent reputation as a judge, and taken on the whole, there are few men who stand bigger in his nation than E. H. Lerblance.


Indian Territory,

O'Beirne, Harry F. and Edward S. The Indian Territory: Its Chiefs, Legislators, and Leading Men. St. Louis. 1898.

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