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Paul E. Burney. There is probably no better known family in the Chickasaw Nation than that which bears the name of Burney, a family that has made history for this part of Oklahoma and the members of which have held important positions in business and the professions, as well as in public life. A worthy representative of this old and honored name among the Chickasaws is found in the person of Paul E. Burney, assistant cashier of the First National Bank of Woodville, Oklahoma, and a young man who is living up to the best traditions of the name he bears.
Ben C. Burney, the father of Paul E. Burney, was born of Chickasaw parentage, in Mississippi, and his father was killed on a steamboat on the Red River when the Chickasaws were removing from that state to their new western homes. Ben C. Burney became one of the most influential men in the Nation, which he represented at Washington, D. C., and of which he was the governor for a number of years after the location of the Nation in Indian Territory, and at one time had 70,000 acres of land under his control. He married a member of the prominent Gaines family, of the Chickasaws, and they became the parents of the following children: Ella, who is deceased; Ada, also deceased; Ben B., who is county treasurer of Marshall County, Oklahoma; Paul E., of this notice; and Arvilla, who is the wife of R. E. McGough, who is engaged in farming and stock raising operations in the vicinity of Aylesworth.
Paul E. Burney was born on the old Burney homestead place near Aylesworth, Oklahoma. June 17, 1886. His education was secured at the Chickasaw Rock Academy at Wapanucka, Harley Institute at Tishimingo, Hargrove College at Ardmore and the University Preparatory School at Tonkawa, and at the last-named institution secured the business training which has enabled him to fill the important position which he now holds. After leaving school, Mr. Burney engaged in farming and raising stock until his election in 1910 to the office of county clerk of Marshall County, a position in which he established an excellent record for faithful and capable service. At the end of his term he came to Woodville and accepted the position as assistant cashier of the First National Hank, which he has retained to the present time. He bears a reputation for integrity and probity that has gained him the confidence of the people of his adopted place, and among his associates is known as a young man of much business and financial ability. In 1913 occurred the marriage of Mr. Burney with Miss Myrtle Watterson, daughter of Dr. and Mrs. J. O. Watterson, of Woodville. Doctor Watterson, who is now deceased, was for twenty years a well known physician and surgeon of this place. Mrs. Burney was educated in the public schools of Woodville and at Olympia, Washington, and is a lady of many accomplishments, being, like her husband, a general favorite at Woodville. They are the parents of two sons: Paul E., Jr., and Ben B., Jr. Mr. Burney is a thirty second degree Mason, a member of the Shriners at Oklahoma City, the Knights Templar at Ardmore, the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks at Ardmore, the Knights of Pythias at Madill, the Woodmen of the World at Cumberland, and the independent Order of Odd Fellows at Woodville.