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Charles H. Martin. As cashier of the Central Exchange Bank of Woodward, the judicial center of the county of the same name, Mr. Martin is to be consistently designated as one of the representative business men and progressive and loyal citizens of this thriving community, where his circle of friends is coincident with that of his acquaintances. That he has exemplified most effectively the vital spirit of the West is but natural, for he has passed his life thus far in that vigorous section of our national domain and claims the Sunflower state as the place of his nativity.
Mr. Martin was born in the City of Wichita, Kansas, on the 11th of June, 1871, and is a son of Dr. Henry C. and Mary F. (Ferrell) Martin. Doctor Martin was born in the City of Buffalo, New York, and was reared and educated in the old Empire state, where, as a young man, he admirably prepared himself for his chosen profession. He removed to the South prior to the Civil war and there engaged in practice. Upon the inception of the great conflict between the North and South he- was soon called upon to give service as a surgeon in the Confederate army, and he thus served during the entire course of the war, with the Second Louisiana Regiment of Infantry.
In 1869 Doctor Martin proceeded by boat up the Mississippi and Missouri rivers to Westport Landing, a place that was the nucleus of the present metropolis of Kansas City, and from that point he made his way with a wagon and ox team to Wichita, Kansas, this unique journey having represented his wedding tour, and his bride having loyally accompanied him into the Western wilds to establish a “honeymoon home” that should be of enduring order and prove the center of their devoted interests for many years. Doctor Martin entered claim to a tract of government land in Sedgwick County and in addition to giving his supervision to its reclamation and improvement he engaged in the practice of his profession at Wichita, which was then a mere frontier village and in which he has had the distinction of being the first resident physician and surgeon. The doctor became one of the most influential and honored pioneer citizens of that section of the Sunflower state, and had much to do with the shaping of public affairs in his home city and county during those early days. In 1878 he removed with his family to Harper County, Kansas, where he became one of the organizers of the county, where he developed a large practice as a physician and where he accumulated a large and valuable estate. He was a democrat in his political allegiance and both he and his wife were zealous communicants of the Catholic Church. Doctor Martin passed the closing years of a long and useful life at Harper, Kansas, where he died on the 20th of May, 1902, his birth having occurred in the year 1845.
In the City of New Orleans, in 1868, was solemnized the marriage of Doctor Martin to Miss Mary F. Ferrell, who was born in Ireland, in 1845, and who was a child at the time of the family immigration to the United States, her parents having been John and Mary Ferrell, both representatives of staunch old Irish stock. Mrs. Martin still survives her honored husband and continues to maintain her home at Harper, Kansas. Of the six children, two died in infancy and of the four surviving the subject of this review is next to the oldest; two of the others, Emiel J. and Helen M., are still residents of Harper, Kansas, and William J. resides in Fairfax, Oklahoma.
Charles H. Martin acquired his preliminary education in the public schools of Harper, Kansas, and his higher academic education was obtained in St. Francis College, at Osage Mission, that state. After leaving college Mr. Martin passed eleven years in the State of Montana and other sections of the Northwest, where he gave his attention to mining enterprise and to the cattle industry on the great ranges of that section.
In the year 1905 Mr. Martin established his residence at Woodward, Oklahoma Territory, where he purchased an interest in the Central Exchange Bank, of which he was elected vice president. In 1907, the year that marked the admission of Oklahoma to the Union, he became cashier of the institution, and as the incumbent of this office he has since continued the executive head of the bank, which has become under his effective administration one of the strong and popular financial institutions of Western Oklahoma. The Central Exchange Bank was established in 1904 and its affairs have been ordered along conservative and yet progressive lines, so that it wields large influence in connection with the furtherance and maintenance of general prosperity in the community which it serves. Mr. Martin is interested in banks at May, Moreland, Sharon and Gray, Oklahoma. He is liberal and loyal in his support of measures and enterprises tending to advance civic and material progress and prosperity and is one of the leading business men and popular citizens of Woodward County. He still permits his name to be enrolled upon the list of eligible bachelors.