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Joseph H. Cline. In those eventful days of August, 1901, when a throng of people were seeking new homes in the recently opened Kiowa and Comanche reservations, one of those who selected Hobart as their place of residence was a young man bearing the stamp of a professional education and who soon hung out his sign in the little village as a lawyer. From that time to the present Joseph H. Cline has continued a member of the bar, and is now one of the oldest in point of continuous service in Southwestern Oklahoma. Mr. Cline is a lawyer of sound learning and unquestioned ability and has been more or less constantly a leading figure in the republican party in the old territory and the new state.
His birth occurred at Belle Center, Ohio, in Logan County of that state in 1881. While the name now has an American spelling, his great-grandfather was a native of Germany, where the name was spelled Klein, and was an early settler in Virginia. Mr. Cline’s father was H. M. Cline, who was born in Cleveland, Ohio, in 1834 and died at Belle Center, Ohio, in 1899. After leaving Cleveland he located in Auglaize County, Ohio, and then went to Belle Center, where he married, and in 1881 was elected sheriff of Logan County. The duties of that office took him to Bellefontaine, the county seat, and he continued as sheriff five years. Returning to Belle Center, he became a merchant, was owner of an elevator, and also had extensive interests as a farmer and stock raiser. He made a notable record as a soldier during the Civil war, having enlisted in 1861 in the Forty-fifth Ohio Regiment of Volunteer Infantry. In 1862 during the campaign through Eastern Tennessee he was captured at Philadelphia in that state, and thenceforward for nearly three years endured the perils, discomforts and hardships of Confederate prison life, in Andersonville, Libby, Belle Island, Raleigh, Columbus and other places where the Federal soldiers were confined. He was not released until the close of the war, and thus while four years elapsed from the time of his enlistment until his honorable discharge he had been a member of his company and regiment actually only about a year. The notable fact about his service is that only one other Federal soldier endured imprisonment for a longer time during the War of the Rebellion. His rival in this record was a soldier from Augusta, Maine, but his term of imprisonment was only twenty days longer than that of Mr. Cline. H. M. Cline was a republican in politics and a member of the Masonic fraternity. He married Margaret Conley, who was born in Auglaize County, Ohio, in 1844, and died at Belle Center, in 1913. Their children were: C. H., who is a traveling salesman with home at Rushsylvania, Ohio; G. H., a merchant at Springfield, Ohio; Blanche, who married John Mains, railroad station agent at Belle Center, Ohio; Clara, wife of O. F. Dodds, who is interested in mining in the State of Arizona; Joseph H.; and Hugh M., who is on the police force at Springfield, Ohio.
Joseph H. Cline received his early education in the public schools of his native county, and graduated from the Belle Center High School in the class of 1897. His early law studies were in the office of Judge William H. West at Bellefontaine, and for one year he was in the Ohio State University and was admitted to the bar in 1900. After a brief experience as a lawyer in Charles City, Iowa, he came to the Southwest and participated in the opening of the Kiowa and Comanche reservations in 1901, and in August of that year settled at Hobart, where as one of the pioneer attorneys he has enjoyed a large general civil and criminal practice. Soon after arriving at Hobart he was appointed deputy county attorney of Kiowa County and acted in that capacity a year and a half. Before statehood he was one of the i assistant attorney generals of the territory, and in 1909 began a two-year term as city attorney of Hobart. His offices are in the Farmers and Merchants Bank Building.
As an active republican Mr. Cline was for a number of years state committeeman from Kiowa County, also served as chairman of the Republican County Central Committee, and for several years was a member of the State Executive Committee. He belongs to the County Bar Association and fraternally is affiliated with Hobart Lodge No. 881 of the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks.
In 1905, four years after his arrival in Hobart, he married Miss Kathryn Ziegler, whose father is A. O. Ziegler, a cotton buyer at Hobart. To their marriage have been born four children: Margaret, born August 7, 1906, a student in the public schools; Kathryn, born September 11, 1909, and also in school; Mildred, born October 17, 1911, and Ralph, born April 3, 1913.