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William R. Redder of El Reno was three years in advance of the great rush of white settlers into the original Oklahoma Territory. He became identified with what is now Oklahoma in the capacity of a teacher in the Indian service, and resigned from that service about the time of the first opening and thenceforward was closely identified with politics and business in and about El Reno.
Born on a farm in Dutchess County, New York, in April, 1862, he inherits good stock from both his father and mother, John and Mary (Brannam) Redder, the former a native of New York and of German ancestry, and the latter of Irish lineage. John Redder was born in 1836 and died in 1892. and spent all his active career as a fruit grower in Dutchess County, New York. His wife was born in 1843 and died in 1891. To their marriage were born twelve children, four daughters and eight sons, namely: Elizabeth, John, Cornelia, Henry, George, Maria, Howard, Mary, Edward, William R., Charles and Robert.
Mr. Redder grew up on his father’s farm in Dutchess County, New York, and acquired a good education in the local public schools. When eighteen he began learning the trade of butcher and for a time was also a barber. Then in 1886 came his appointment as teacher in the United States Indian service, with appointment to the Arapahoe School at Darlington, Indian Territory. Mr. Redder has a great many interesting recollections of the old Darlington agency and knew all that part of the country as it was before the invasion of the white settlers. In 1889 he was transferred to the sub-Indian agency at Old Cantonment in the capacity of issue clerk to the Indians.
When Oklahoma was opened to settlement in 1889 he resigned from the Indian service and located at old Reno City, subsequently identifying himself with El Reno.
For a great many years Mr. Redder has been an active factor in democratic politics in this section of the state. For four years he was secretary of the central committee of Canadian County, and was frequently a delegate to state conventions. He served as postmaster at El Reno for three years from September 1, 1893, and in 1897 was a messenger in the Territorial Council, in 1908 a messenger in the State Senate. Fraternally he is affiliated with the Independent Order of Odd Fellows.
On December 17, 1890, at El Reno, he married Miss Alice Gray, daughter of Edward Gray. Mrs. Redder was born in Iowa, January 22, 1862, and before her marriage was also for a number of years connected with the United States Indian school service as a teacher.