Andrew J. Morris, of Anadarko, whose name occupies a conspicuous place on the roll of Oklahoma’s lawyers, during twenty years’ connection with the bar of the state has won and maintained a reputation for ability that has given him just pre-eminence among his professional brethren. In the law, as in every other walk of life, success is largely the outcome of resolute purpose and unfaltering industry, qualities which are possessed in a large degree by Mr. Morris. He is one of the pioneer lawyers in Anadarko, having come here in 1901, which year marks the opening of the town.
The founder of the Morris family in America was an Irishman, who settled in North Carolina in the early colonial days of our national history. J. E. Morris, father of A. J. Morris, was born in Tennessee in 1830 and he died at Big Flat, Baxter County, Arkansas, in 1902. With the exception of two years he spent the entire period of his active business career in Big Flat, where he was a prosperous farmer and stockman. He was a democrat in politics and for many years was justice of the peace. In religious matters he was a devout member of the Christian Church and served on its official board for several years. He gave evidence of loyalty to the cause of the South during the Civil war by serving in the Confederate army for one year, during which time he participated in a number of battles, including that of Pea Ridge. He married Sarah Treat, who was born in Georgia, in 1833, and who died at Batesville, Arkansas, in 1878. Six children were born to Mr. and Mrs. Morris, as follows: J. S. is a farmer and stock raiser in the vicinity of Mountain View, Arkansas; Jesse was a farmer near El Paso, Texas, at the time of his demise, aged thirty-five years; Sarah Elizabeth married John Avey, a farmer near Lone Rock, Arkansas; Andrew J. is he whose name forms the caption for this review; W. R. resides on the old homestead near Big Flat, Arkansas; and Belle married Emmett Merrill, a farmer near Rush Springs, Arkansas.
A. J. Morris was born at Big Flat, Baxter County, Arkansas, January 4, 1864. He grew to the age of fourteen years on his father’s farm, at which time his mother died and he was thenceforth left to shift for himself. He received his first schooling at the age of twenty-seven years, but so eager was he for knowledge that at the end of a nine months’ course of study he was awarded a second grade teacher’s certificate. He then taught school for six months, at the end of which he again went to school himself. Six months later he received a first grade certificate and for the ensuing seven months he taught school, at the same time beginning the study of law under S. W. Wood, at Yellville, Arkansas. He was admitted to the Arkansas state bar April 25, 1895, and entered upon the active practice of his profession at Lone Rock, Arkansas, remaining there until May, 1896. On the latter date he came to Oklahoma and for a while remained at the Sac & Fox Agency, near Chandler. In 1897 he located at Tecumseh and there served as city attorney until March, 1898, when he settled at Chandler, remaining in the latter place until November 1, 1901. He then came to Anadarko, that year marking the opening of this place, and here established himself as one of the pioneer lawyers of the town. During the long intervening years to the present time he has built up a large general, civil and criminal practice, his offices at the present time being in the postoffice block. He was local attorney for the Rock Island Railroad for two years and is known to have the largest practice of any lawyer in this section of the state. He practices in all the federal courts and in all the departments of the interior and has as large a practice in the supreme court as any lawyer in Oklahoma, He is known throughout his home community for his high order of ability and for his conscientious dealings with his clients. The more credit is due him for his splendid achievements in the field of law inasmuch, as he is self educated and a self-made man in the strictest sense of the term.
In politics Mr. Morris is a staunch democrat and in a fraternal way he is affiliated with the Independent Order of Odd Fellows and with the Knights of Pythias. In connection with his law work he is a valued member of the County, State and National Law associations. His residence, located on thirty-eight acres of land near Anadarko, is one of the most beautiful in the state. He owns 320 acres of farming land two miles south and one mile east of this city, and the same is stocked with hogs and Red Polled cattle. Mr. Morris personally supervises this farm, sometimes directing his men by telephonic communication, and at such times as he can leave his law business he runs out to his farm in his automobile and personally directs his men what to do until they receive further instructions. Mr. Morris takes special pride in directing the care and management of his farm and stock, using this as a means of recreation as well as for profit.