Charles J. Benson. Though
a well trained lawyer by profession, Charles J. Benson since he came
to Oklahoma nearly twenty-five years ago has been primarily
identified with banking. He has been at the head of a number of
prosperous and substantial institutions in various parts of the
state, and is now president of the First National Bank of Sapulpa. He
bought the chief interests and assumed the management of this bank in
the fall of 1914. An indication of its steady growth since that time
is found in the statistics relating to deposits. At the end of
September, 1914, the deposits aggregated $435,000, while by June,
1915, that item was approximately $512,000, an increase of almost
$100,000 in less than a year. The First National Bank of Sapulpa has
resources totaling over $640,000. The officers are: C. J. Benson,
president; W. S. Bunting, vice president: R. Steinhorst, cashier.
Though most of his
active career has been identified with Oklahoma, Charles J. Benson
is an Ohio man and was born at Akron November 27, 1869, a son of J.
E. and Sarah (Underwood) Benson. His parents spent all their lives on
a farm in Ohio, and Charles J. was the next to the youngest
of eight children. He grew up on a farm but attended the public
schools in Akron, and completed his education in the law department
of Georgetown University at Washington, D.
C., where he received his degree LL. B. in 1891.
at the opening of the Pottawatomie Reservation, he came to Tecumseh,
and for about a year made the law his primary business. He then was
drawn into banking affairs, as cashier of the Tecumseh State Bank in
1893, moved from there to Shawnee, was made cashier of the Shawnee
State Bank in 1895, and in 1897 became cashier of the Shawnee
National Bank. In 1900 he bought the Oklahoma National Bank, of which
he became president, and remained at its head until 1907. In 1911 he
removed to Bristow, and was president of the Bristow National Bank
and is still at the head of that institution, though his home is in
Sapulpa. In October, 1914, he acquired most of the stock in the First
National Bank of Sapulpa, and has since been its active manager and
While his time has
been so completely absorbed with banking, Mr. Benson has always shown
a public spirited attitude toward local affairs. He has the
distinction of having been the first county superintendent in
Pottawatomie County, but held the office only one year. For six years
he was a member of the board of regents for the Agricultural and
Mechanical College, and was its treasurer. Besides banking he has
some extensive oil interests, and is president of the Layton Oil
Company. Mr. Benson is a republican, is affiliated with the Order of
Elks, is a thirty-second degree Scottish Rite Mason, belonging to the
Consistory at Guthrie, and to the Mystic Shrine at Tulsa. He is a
director in the Sapulpa Commercial Club.
In 1894 Mr. Benson
was married at Tecumseh to Miss Grace Adams. They have one son and
one daughter: Richard W. and Grace Alice.