Fred R. Linton. From the turbulent scenes of the Kansas City Board of Trade, where with other men he experienced the financial reverses and alternately the pleasures of wealth, Mr. Linton came six years ago and established himself in the then unassuming but prosperous City of Chickasha. At that time he had not yet recovered from his previous reverses, and was $10,000 in debt. He determined to apply to the grain business in Oklahoma the same industry and tact which he had employed in his business career at Kansas City. The success he has made in Chickasha is beat attested by the books of the Linton Grain Company, of which he is proprietor, and which show that he handled more than $1,000,000 worth of wheat in the first two months of 1915 and that the business of a day during that period ran from $23,000 to $94,000. His is principally export business, and he buys wheat in carload lots from all over Oklahoma and Kansas. In order to serve the local trade he conducts a $20,000 modern elevator plant in Chickasha.
Fred R. Linton was born in Washington County, Illinois, in 1866, a son of Benjamin and Susan A. (Death) Linton. His father, a native of Wilmington, Ohio, was a general merchant and lumber and grain dealer, and died in 1881. The grandfather, Nathan Linton, was the first settler in Clinton County, Ohio, where he surveyed and platted the county and built the first brick house, and lived to the venerable age of ninety years. A history has been written of the Linton family in America, showing its first ancestors to have located in Pennsylvania as Quaker settlers prior to the Revolutionary war. Reunions of the family are held annually in Philadelphia.
Mr. Linton received his primary education in the public schools of Illinois. An endowment of unusual energy and enterprise sent him into the field of business when still a boy. At the age of fifteen he was a marker in the Board of Trade of Kansas City, with an ambition eventually to become a member of that organization. This ambition was realized at the age of nineteen, when he was the youngest man to hold a seat in the board. The year he was twenty-one brought his first important success, when he netted $40,000 from his operations. The following year this fortune was lost, and for a few years his career was filled with successes and adversity, leading up to the disastrous flood of 1903, when practically all his holdings were washed away. It required several years to re-establish himself, and some of his obligations were not paid until after he came to Oklahoma in 1909. For a year before locating in Chickasha Mr. Linton was engaged in the banking business at Montrose, Missouri.
In Chickasha he is well located with reference to the grain belt and railroad facilities, and his business has grown to enormous proportions. The knowledge he acquired on the board of trade has been applicable here and the business probably leads all others of its kind in towns of this size in the West. Mr. Linton is also one of the thirty stockholders in the American Coal Refining Company of Denver, Colorado, which is operated with a capitalization of $300,000. This company controls new processes by which ingredients are taken from coal and manufactured into products which have a great demand in various commercial industries and from which large profits are realized.
Mr. Linton was married at Parkersburg, West Virginia, in 1887, to Miss Sue E. Rathbone, daughter of Col. W. P. Rathbone, a distinguished West Virginian. Mrs. Linton died after becoming the mother of four children, all of whom are also deceased. The oldest child, a boy of twenty-one, died in a field near Chickasha in 1913 while learning the occupation of farmer. In June, 1909, Mr. Linton married Miss Sadie C. Tully of Kansas City. W. H. Miller, late secretary of the Kansas City Board of Trade, married a sister of Mr. Linton, and she is still a resident of Kansas City.
Mr. Linton is a member of the Oklahoma Grain Dealers’ Association and the Grady County Farm Bureau and Chickasha Chamber of Commerce. He is essentially a home man and has little to do with clubs and lodges. At Fifteenth Street and Minnesota Avenue in Chickasha he has built a $14,000 home of Oklahoma granite and stucco. The structure is one of the finest in the city, and thoroughly modern.