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Wilburn Cartwright

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Wilburn Cartwright
Wilburn Cartwright.jpg
Oklahoma Secretary of State
In office
GovernorRoy J. Turner
Preceded byKathrine Manton
Succeeded byJohn D. Conner
Chairman of the Committee on Roads
In office
March 4, 1933 – January 3, 1943
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Oklahoma's 3rd district
In office
March 4, 1927 – January 3, 1943
Preceded byCharles D. Carter
Succeeded byPaul Stewart
Member of the Oklahoma Senate
In office
Member of the Oklahoma House of Representatives
In office
Personal details
Born(1892-01-12)January 12, 1892
Georgetown, Tennessee
DiedMarch 14, 1979(1979-03-14) (aged 87)
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
Political partyDemocratic
Spouse(s)Carrie Staggs
ChildrenDoralyn Cartwright
Wilburta May Cartwright
ParentsRev. Jackson Robert Cartwright
Emma Josephine Baker-Cartwright
Alma materState Teachers College
University of Oklahoma College of Law
University of Chicago
Occupationteacher, lawyer, politician
Military service
Allegiance United States
Branch/service United States Army
Years of service1943–1945
US-O4 insignia.svg
Battles/warsWorld War II

Wilburn Cartwright (January 12, 1892 – March 14, 1979) was a lawyer, educator, U.S. Representative from Oklahoma, and United States Army officer in World War II. The town of Cartwright, Oklahoma is named after him.

Early life

Born on a farm near Georgetown, Tennessee, Cartwright moved with his parents to the Chickasaw Nation, Indian Territory, in 1903. He attended the public schools at Wapanucka and Ada, Oklahoma, and State Teachers College at Durant, Oklahoma.

Early career

As an educator he taught in the schools of Coal, Atoka, Bryan, and Pittsburg Counties in Oklahoma from 1914 to 1926. During World War I he served as a private in the Student Army Training Corps in 1917 and 1918. He studied law and was admitted to the bar in 1917. He was graduated from the law department of the University of Oklahoma at Norman in 1920. Afterwards he began a law practice in McAlester, Oklahoma. Additionally he took postgraduate work at the University of Chicago, Chicago, Illinois. He served as member of the Oklahoma House of Representatives from 1914 to 1918, and then as a member of the State Senate from 1918 until 1922. Cartwright was a vocational adviser for disabled veterans at McAlester, Oklahoma, in 1921 and 1922. He was an unsuccessful candidate for the Democratic nomination for Congress in 1922 and 1924, and served as Superintendent of schools at Krebs, Oklahoma from 1922 to 1926.


Wilburn's great-great uncle was Peter Cartwright, who had defeated Abraham Lincoln in an Illinois legislative race.[1]

His two daughters were Wilburta May Cartwright and Doralyn Emma Cartwright (Lynn Cartwright),[2] who was an actress that was married to actor Leo Gordon.[3]

His nephew, Jan Eric Cartwright, was the Oklahoma Attorney General from 1979–1983.[4]

His siblings were Floyd, Gerty, McKinley, Shafter, Dewey, Cecil, Keith, and Clifford (Buck). The last two were also Oklahoma state legislators.[5]

His father, Jackson Robert (JR) Cartwright, was a Baptist preacher[6] and served in the Oklahoma House of Representatives in 1929 and 1931.[7]

United States Congress

Cartwright was elected as a Democrat to the Seventieth and to the seven succeeding Congresses (March 4, 1927 - January 3, 1943). He served as chairman of the Committee on Roads (Seventy-third through Seventy-seventh Congresses). He was an unsuccessful candidate for renomination in 1942. Cartwright was a supporter of the New Deal public works projects in his district.[8]

Military career

He served as a major in the United States Army, Allied Military Government, with service in Africa and Europe from 1943 until he was injured. He returned to the United States as an instructor at Fort Custer, Michigan, in 1945. He was employed with the Veterans' Administration at Muskogee, Oklahoma, in 1945 and 1946.

Later life

Cartwright was elected Secretary of State of Oklahoma for four-year term in 1946. Cartwright was elected State auditor for four-year term in 1950. Cartwright was elected State corporation commissioner for six-year term in 1954 and reelected in 1960 and 1966. He was a resident of Oklahoma City, Oklahoma until his death there on March 14, 1979. He was interred in I.O.O.F. Cemetery, Norman, Oklahoma.[9]


  • United States Congress. "Wilburn Cartwright (id: C000207)". Biographical Directory of the United States Congress.
  1. ^ "Cartwright, Wilburn" (1891-1979), Oklahoma Historical Society.
  2. ^ "Cartwright, Wilburn" (1891-1979), Oklahoma Historical Society.
  3. ^ "Lynn Cartwright at Find A Grave", Find A Grave.
  4. ^ "Cartwright, Wilburn" (1891-1979), Oklahoma Historical Society.
  5. ^ "Cartwright, Wilburn" (1891-1979), Oklahoma Historical Society.
  6. ^ "Jackson Robert Cartwright at Find A Grave", Find A Grave.
  7. ^ "All Members of the Oklahoma House of Representatives", Oklahoma State Legislature.
  8. ^ Kosmerick, Todd J. "Cartwright, William (1891-1979) Encyclopedia of Oklahoma History & Culture. 10-14-09
  9. ^ Kosmerick. "Cartwright, William (1891-1979) Encyclopedia of Oklahoma History & Culture. 10-14-09

External links

U.S. House of Representatives
Preceded by
Charles D. Carter
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Oklahoma's 3rd congressional district

Succeeded by
Paul Stewart (politician)
This page was last edited on 26 December 2020, at 02:42
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