Biography of Jesse Townsend

Jesse Townsend, a well known agriculturist of Nowata County, was born in Adair County, Indian Territory, on the 1st of March, 1876, a son of Solomon and Mary (Horn) Townsend, both of whom are deceased. They were both natives of Indian Territory, where they were reared to young manhood and womanhood, married and died. Solomon Townsend was killed by an outlaw when his son Jesse was but a year and a half old. He had been clerking in a store, when one day a robbery took place and in tracing the robbers, he was waylaid and killed by one of them. The outlaw was later found and hanged.

Jesse Townsend received his early education in the common schools of his native County and subsequently became a student in the Male Seminary at Tahlequah. At the age of twenty years he put his textbooks aside, and for one year engaged in farming in Adair County. The following year he located on his allotment of fifty acres, five miles northeast of Delaware, and he has since bought ninety acres more adjoining, with an additional eighty acres three miles northwest of the home place. He cultivates all but twenty acres, raising corn, wheat, oats, alfalfa, cattle and hogs, and he has brought the land to the highest state of improvement. His home, which is modern in every respect, is located in the beautiful Verdigris valley.

On the 12th of March, 1919, was celebrated the marriage of Mr. Townsend to Miss Ida May Miller, a daughter of Stephen and Catherine (Armstrong) Miller, and of Delaware extraction, as is Mr. Townsend. Her father is one of the prominent farmers and oil men in Nowata County and since the death of Chief Journeycake has been acting chief of the Delawares. The Miller family is one of Oklahoma’s most representative families and extended mention of Stephen Miller may be found in his sketch appearing on another page of this work. Mrs. Townsend has an allotment of eighty acres south of Delaware, in Section 6, on which there are eight developed oil wells, from which she is drawing substantial royalties. She likewise owns ten acres in Section 28, near Coodys Bluff. To the union of Mr. and Mrs. Townsend one daughter has been born, Mary Lena Katherine.

Fraternally Mr. Townsend is affiliated with the Independent Order of Odd Fellows and the religious faith of the family is that of the Holiness Church. Although the greater part of Mr. Townsend’s time is devoted to his business interests he is alive to the duties and responsibilities, as well as the privileges of citizenship, and to that end is active in any movement for public development and improvement. He has always been a stanch advocate of education and was a member of the township school board from statehood to 1921. He has many friends in northeastern Oklahoma, who appreciate his true personal worth and many sterling characteristics and he is readily conceded to be a representative citizen of the community.



Benedict, John Downing. Muskogee and Northeastern Oklahoma: including the counties of Muskogee, McIntosh, Wagoner, Cherokee, Sequoyah, Adair, Delaware, Mayes, Rogers, Washington, Nowata, Craig, and Ottawa. Chicago: S.J. Clarke Pub. Co., 1922.

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