W. P. Root. The modern lawyer is likely to be also known as a very successful business man. It is doubtful if any lawyer in Creek County has more extensive business interests and connections than W. P. Root of Sapulpa. Mr. Root was an Oklahoma pioneer, having located in the Cherokee Strip at the time of the opening, and for more than fifteen years has had his home and his chief interests at Sapulpa.
A man now just in the prime of his years and achievements, W. P. Root was born near Areola in Douglas County, Illinois, January 1, 1864, a son of William T. and Kizzie (Raney) Root. His father was born in the State of Virginia, March 12, 1835, has followed farming all his life, and though past fourscore years is still in good health and has a fruit farm at the edge of the Town of Hermiston, Oregon. The mother was born near Marietta, Ohio, and died in 1891 at the age of forty-six in Kansas. There were four sons and four daughters, and two of the sons and two of the daughters are still living.
The second in order of birth, W. P. Root lived in that section of Illinois where he was born for the first twenty-two years of his life. He was reared on a farm, and had a common school education to start with. His parents then moved out to Ford County, Kansas, and going there later he took up and improved a claim. While living on his claim he “bached” and varied the tedium of his somewhat lonely existence by borrowing a set of law books and studying law at every opportunity for some three or four years. He is a self educated lawyer, but his experience has shown that he has suffered no particular handicap on that account. He was admitted to the bar of Kansas about 1890, and in 1893 at the opening of the Cherokee Strip he moved to Pawnee. He remained in a successful practice there until April, 1898, and then went out to Wyoming and was attorney for the Daly coal interests in that state until the property was sold to the Standard Oil Company, with which he remained until the fall of 1899. He then resigned his position, and in February, 1900, opened his law office in Sapulpa. Since then he has enjoyed a large general practice, and is now dean of the local profession at Sapulpa, having outlasted all other attorneys who were here when he came. Mr. Root’s offices are in the Root Building at 714 South Main Street, and this building represents one of his contributions to the growth of the city. He owns several farms and owns producing oil wells on one farm and a half interest in two other wells. He also holds some valuable oil leases and has a large amount of oil lands in this district. Much of his practice has been as attorney for various oil companies. He has never been led aside from the law and business affairs by politics. He is a republican, but locally votes for the best man. Fraternally he is affiliated with the Independent Order of Odd Fellows and the Knights of Pythias, and with the auxiliaries of these orders.
At Dodge City, Kansas, March 20, 1889, Mr. Root married Miss Stella M. Hammond. She was born near Galesburg, Illinois, a daughter of Capt. R. F. Hammond, who served with a gallant record in the Civil war. There is probably no man in Sapulpa who takes a more thorough interest in outdoor life and sports. He is one of the men in the county who maintains a pack of hounds, and for the past six years the Thanksgiving day wolf hunt which starts from his summer home, 10½ miles west of Sapulpa, has been an event attracting wide interest and a great many sportsmen from all this section of Oklahoma. His ranch is located on Rock Creek. There is a standing invitation to all owners of hounds in the county to come to the Root home and take part in the wolf hunt. Besides his pack of hounds Mr. Root is the only one in this part of Oklahoma who keeps a flock of pea fowls and pheasants.