Transcribed from The Wichita Eagle, Feb 12, 1930
From Oklahoma Territorial Museum file
Submitted to Sedgwick County KSGenWeb by Jan LaMotte, 4 May 2000



Judge Frank Dale Went to Guthrie When
Territory Opened to Settlement


Word reached Wichita yesterday of the death of Judge Frank Dale, which occurred at his home in Guthrie, Okla., at 10 p.m., Monday. Friends here have been advised that funeral services will take place some time Thursday at Guthrie, where he has made his home since he left Wichita in 1889.

The name of Dale is linked closely with the early history of Sedgwick county through the three brothers who formerly lived here-Will, Dave and Frank.

Will, later a banker at Clearwater, and Frank came here from their home in Illinois in the early seventies and settled on a farm near the present site of Andale. It was there that Kos Harris, Wichita attorney, first met Frank Dale in 1874, he said last night.

When the late Judge David Dale came to Wichita in 1877 and opened a law office here, Frank left the farm and studied law in his brother's office. Later they formed the law firm of Dale & Dale, which continued until the territory of Oklahoma was opened to settlement in 1889. At that time Frank Dale decided to cast his lot with the newer country and he settled at Guthrie, which later became the territorial capital.

Won Suit and $100,000

Soon after going to Oklahoma he became involved in a law suit, as attorney for one of the litigants, over a tract of land which was part of the townsite of Guthrie. Old timers recall that by winning the suit Dale profited to the extent of $100,000, a fortune in that day, to which he added much in the years that followed.

He was appointed to a federal judgeship by President Grover Cleveland and still is remembered by early settlers of Oklahoma as a territorial chief justice. He had served as register of the land office at Wichita before going to Oklahoma.

After leaving the bench Judge Dale formed a partnership with Judge Bierer at Guthrie and continued the practice of law in that city for many years. In recent years he had retired from active practice, though he still retained his connection with the office and acted as advisor to the younger members of the firm.

Extensive Banking Interests

In addition to his law business Judge Dale had banking interests which were extensive. He was one of the earliest Democratic candidates for congress in Oklahoma, but was defeated.

Though he left this city more than 40 years ago, Judge Dale had many friends here and he enjoyed his frequent visits to this city.

He was one of the moving spirits in building the line now operated by the Missouri Pacific between Wichita and Hutchinson.

Surviving Judge Dale is his wife. They had no children. Charles Lawrence, 841 North Emporia, is his brother-in-law, and Dr. C. N. Johnson and Dr. H. N. Tihen of this city are nephews of Judge Dale.

Mr. Lawrence said last night Judge Dale's health has been bad for some time. Friends here who saw him on his more recent visits remarked he was failing fast. He was a big man, much taller than either of his brothers, and possessed of a rugged constitution. His passing will be mourned by many warm friends both in Kansas and Oklahoma.



Judge Frank Dale, bearer of a name which figures prominently in the early day history of Sedgwick county, who died Monday at his home in Guthrie, Okla. Several years after settling near Andale, Judge Dale took up the study of law in the office of his brother, Dave, in 1877. After attaining considerable renown here he went to Guthrie when the strip was opened to settlement and became a territorial justice there.


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