Biography of John Gunter Sanders

(See Ghigau, Sanders, Oolootsa and Adair)-John Gunter, son of William Edward and Sarah Catherine (Scrimsher) Sanders was born at the Sanders homestead, southwest of Claremore Mound on April 23, 1891. He was educated at Claremore Public Schools, A. and M. College, Stillwater, Okla, and Henry Kendall College, Tulsa, Okla. Gentlemanly and reserved Mr. Sanders is one of the foremost and most progressive members of his tribe. Of distinguished lineage it is but naturel that he should take a leaders place in the councils of the Cherokee.

His father was born in Going Snake District April 2, 1861, just as the calamitous war clouds spread desolation over the happy homes of the Cherokees. Four years later the impoverished tribe returned to their desolate land, when during the next several years not only was the educational advantages inadequate but stark poverty was general in the entire border land. During these years of privations William Edward Sanders passed through the ordinary school years with scant educational advantages. He did not despair but worked and applied himself until it would have been hard to imagine that Halsell’s genial and polished young ranch boss had not had the advantages of a university. His party in seeking a strong man for sheriff of Cooweescoowee District chose him in 1885. He was elected and gave such general satisfaction that he was easily reelected. He refused to run in 1889 and devoted himself to improving his farm on Verdigris River. This farm site had in the first quarter of the eighteenth century, been the location of a peach orchard that was owned and maintained by Claremore’s band of Osages and for that reason it had been known locally as the “Osage Peach Orchard.”

Mr. Sanders was married at the residence of his friend, Judge Walter Adair Starr, on March 2, 1890 to Sarah Catherine, the popular and gracious daughter of Judge and Mrs. John Gunter Scrimsher, born July 27, 1866. Two happy years sped by for them, John Gunter was born and at the succeeding August election the suffrages of a satisfied constituency recalled the father to the office of sheriff. But on January 28, 1892 the dark angel of death called the blessed mother, after a few days of pneumonia. So well had Sheriff Sanders served his people that they elected him to the Senate at the election of 1893. As sheriff and county commissioner, Mr. Sanders is at present one of the most popular and respected citizens of Rogers County. Adair, Gunter, Sanders and Candy, a noble heritage to represent and defend by life’s actions.

John G. Sanders, the subject of this sketch, is a member of the Cherokee Executive Council (The business committee designated to attend to Cherokee tribal affairs.) He has devoted a good part of his time during the past two years to tribal matters and is one of the delegates appointed to represent the Cherokee Executive Council before the Congress at Washington D. C. at the present Session. Mr. Sanders lives in the City of Tulsa with his uncle, Mr. S. R. Lewis, and is a very popular and highly respected young man.



Starr, Emmett. History of the Cherokee Indians and Their Legends and Folk Lore. Oklahoma City, Oklahoma: The Warden Company. 1921

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