Dr. Thomas J. Lee. The
Lee family, one of the best known and most highly honored in America
today, was first established in Virginia by its English
representative in Colonial times. Dr. Thomas J. Lee, practicing his
profession in Rocky, Oklahoma, is of the same branch as was Gen.
Robert E. Lee, of Civil war fame. Doctor Lee was born in Monroe,
Union County, North Carolina, on October 15, 1860, and is a son of
Joshua and Eliza (Doster) Lee.
Joshua Lee was born
in South Carolina in 1830, and he died at Lyerly, Georgia, in 1910.
From South Carolina he went to Monroe, Union County, North Carolina,
and there married. In 1868 he moved to near Rome, Georgia, where he
spent his remaining years in farming, an occupation to which he had
been reared and always followed. He served four years in the
Confederate army as a volunteer from North Carolina. He was with
General Lee at Appomattox and was breveted colonel in appreciation of
his gallant service to the Southland. He was a life-long member of
the Baptist Church and a deacon for forty-five years. His wife, now a
resident of Chattanooga, Tennessee, was born in North Carolina in
1836. She was the mother of ten children. The three eldest, Flora, J.
Monroe and G. S., are deceased. William Ellison, a Methodist
preacher, lives in Purcell, Oklahoma. Robert E. is a contractor and
builder in Gainsville, Florida. Dallas P. is a Baptist preacher and
is located at Elba, Alabama. Willis W. is pastor of the Calvary
Baptist Church at San Antonio, Texas. Frank S. is with the Richmond
Oil Company at Chattanooga, Tennessee. Charles R., pastor of the
South Rome Baptist Church, is living at Rome, Georgia, long the home
of the family.
Thomas J. Lee was
the fifth born child of his parents. He was reared on the home farm,
had a common school education in the Rome schools and remained at
homo until he was twenty-one years old. In 1883 he was graduated from
the medical department of Vanderbilt
University, Nashville, Tennessee, with the degree M. D. Since that
time he has taken numerous post graduate courses, among them training
in Atlanta, Georgia, Tulane University, New Orleans and the New York
Post Graduate School.
In 1883, soon after
his graduation, Doctor Lee began practice in Stilesboro, Georgia. He
was there three years,
then moved in 1886 to Childersburg, Alabama, where he remained in
practice until 1895. In that year ill health caused him to give up
his work there and pioneer it to Oklahoma, where he settled in Pauls
Valley. He found the climate suited to him, and his health improved.
He resumed practice and was there occupied until the year 1902, when
he went to West Hobart and bought a farm of 160 acres. He had not
been seriously enough inoculated with the agricultural “bug”
to induce him to take to actual farming, so he sold the place soon
after and took up practice in Hobart, where he continued successfully
for a year. It was not until 1905 that Doctor Lee came to Rocky, and
here he has since continued in active practice, enjoying a good deal
of popularity and success in his professional work.
The doctor has his
offices in the Rocky Drug Store. He is a democrat and has served the
town as health physician. He has been prominent in politics and has
done good work for the party in county and state conventions. He was
one of the original Wilson men of the county and ably assisted in the
campaign that made Mr. Wilson president. Especially in educational
affairs of the community has Doctor Lee shown himself interested, and
he has exercised an excellent influence in the town along those
lines. He is an active member of the Baptist Church and a teacher in
the Sunday school. He has been vice president of the Oklahoma Baptist
Convention, was a member of the Oklahoma Baptist Educational
Committee, and is a member of the board of trustees of the Oklahoma
Baptist University, located at Shawnee, Oklahoma.
ties are with the County, State and American Medical societies, and
he is fraternally identified with Rocky Lodge of the Odd Fellows,
being past grand of Alabama Lodge.
Doctor Lee was
married in 1885 at Jonesville, South Carolina, to Miss Josie Fowler,
daughter of E. T. Fowler, a farmer of that state, now deceased. Three
children have been born to them.
Mary Virginia is a
graduate of the Oklahoma Baptist College, with the degree of A. B.,
and is a teacher in the Clinton High School.
Joshua is an
instructor in public speaking at the Oklahoma Baptist University. He
won the oratorical contest at the state university at Norman,
Oklahoma, and as an entrant in the Intercollegiate Prohibition
Contest of Oratory, won the local, state and interstate contests. It
is his intention to engage in the national contest in 1916, • and
his chance of winning is everywhere conceded to be a most excellent
Thomas J. Jr. was
graduated from the Granite High School in 1915.