John A. Hansen. The Bank of Commerce of Perry, Oklahoma, is an institution which grew out of the needs of its community, and which with the growth and development of the city has itself expanded and prospered. It has had the benefit of the strong and careful guiding hand of John A. Hansen, who was one of its founders and who in the capacity of president is now directing its policies in a manner that makes it one of the substantial and reliable monetary institutions of Noble County.
Mr. Hansen, who has been a resident of Perry for twenty-two years, was born at Chicago, Illinois, January 29, 1869, and as a child was taken by his parents to Chautauqua County, Kansas, whence his father was sent in the capacity of Sunday school missionary and representative of the American Sunday School Union. O. Hansen labored in that field of endeavor in Kansas for a period of fifteen years, and at the time of his retirement therefrom came to Oklahoma and took up his residence at Hobart, where he died November 13, 1907. When he was twelve years of age John A. Hansen was taken to Centralia, Nemaha County, Kansas, where he completed a common school education, and when he was a lad of thirteen years began his career as an employe of the Centralia State Bank of Centralia, a concern with which he was identified for five years. Subsequently he went to Kansas City and was employed by the Lombard Investment Company, and for six years did office work for that firm, at Kansas City, Omaha and Dallas, and then decided to take part in the opening of the Cherokee Strip. On September 16, 1893, he came from Kansas City to Perry, where he engaged in the lumber business under the firm style of Hansen & Nims, a partnership which existed for 1½ years. In November, 1894, Mr. Hansen was elected the first sheriff of Noble County, a capacity in which he served capably and courageously for a term of two years, and when he left that office established himself in the insurance and loan business. This he conducted with a satisfying degree of success until March 1, 1905, when he became one of the founders of the Bank of Commerce of Perry, which was established with a capital of $15,000, Mr. Hansen at that time becoming cashier and Charles E. Dennis, president. Mr. Hansen succeeded to the presidency of this institution in 1908, and has continued to retain that office to the present time. The bank has steadily grown in public favor and in the confidence of the people, and at present has deposits of $210,000, exchange of $85,000, and loans of $140,000. Mr. Hansen owns 800 acres of well improved farming land in Noble County, which he rents, and also has several city residences at Perry and a business block. He is interested in three oil companies in the Sapulpa field, which give promise of producing satisfactorily. In political matters a republican, he has not been active save as a good citizen, and his only public office was that of sheriff. In local affairs he is known as a man who has ever been ready to assist in the advancement and development of his adopted community. Mr. Hansen is prominent fraternally, belonging to Perry Lodge No. 78, Ancient Free & Accepted Masons, and has passed the chairs in the chapter and commandery, being present eminent commander of the latter, and a delegate to the grand bodies of the state.
On June 24, 1903, Mr. Hansen was married at Anadarko, Oklahoma, to Miss Blanche Benight, daughter of a prosperous farmer of Caddo County. Two sons have been born to this union: Charles A., who is ten years old; and Oscar B., aged six years, both attending the graded schools. Mrs. Hansen is well known at Perry, where she is active in the work of the church, and where, like her husband, she has many warm friends.