Born in Leipsic, Ohio, CHARLES NATHANIEL HASKELL was privately educated and became a teacher, practitioner of law, and businessman. After moving to Muskogee, Oklahoma, he organized the Territorial Trust and Banking Company and purchased the New State Tribune. He was also well known for his acumen in the field of railroad construction. In 1905 he served with the Sequoyah Constitutional Convention and in 1906 was elected to the Oklahoma Constitutional Convention. When Congress approved the unification of the Indian and Oklahoma Territories, Haskell became the first governor of Oklahoma. He oversaw the organization of Oklahoma's state institutions and signed legislation establishing a labor code, a bank guaranty law, and a graduated income tax. He also was responsible for the transfer of the state capital from Guthrie to Oklahoma City. In 1908, he was elected Treasurer of the Democratic National Committee. In accordance with a provision of the state Constitution prohibiting governors from serving successive terms, Haskell left office after four years. In 1912 he lost the Democratic primary for a seat in the U.S. Senate and later engaged in the oil business.

SOURCES:

Oklahoma Governors Since Statehood

Sobel, Robert, and John Raimo, eds. Biographical Directory of the Governors of the United States, 1789-1978, Vol. 3. Westport, CT: Meckler Books, 1978. 4 vols.

The National Cyclopaedia of American Biography, Vol. 14. New York: James T. White & Company.