Orr William Annis. The life of Mr. Annis has been rather on the eventful order, for in the pursuit of occupation, experience, and pertinent location he has wandered over a large part of the country and seen many sides of life. His position of sheriff of Payne county was prolific of ample opportunity for the application of his wide range of information and for the knowledge of human nature acquired by the intelligent when traveling over the country. Of sturdy Scotch descent, Mr. Annis was born in Knox County, Illinois, near Hales burg, June 12, 1859. His parents, Andrew and Leah (Brown) Annis were born, respectively, in Maine and Pennsylvania. The paternal grandfather, Ellison, was born in Maine and came from an old New England family of Scotch descent. During the war of 1812 he served in the American army. He was a sailor in the coasting trade, which occupation he followed until an old man. He died in Knox county when his son was a youth of twelve years. Thrown thus upon his own resources, Andrew Annis early settled on a farm in Knox county and in time became prominent man and a large land-owner. His farm consisted of four hundred acres and was finely improved. His useful life terminated at the age of sixty-three years. His wife lived to be fifty years old.
The second in a family of six sons and one daughter, all of whom are living, O W Annis was reared on his father's farm and educated in the public schools. He had an ambitious nature and the surroundings in Illinois seemed far too circumscribed, so in 1878 he set out for the far west and in the Black Hills engaged in the cattle business, and worked on ranches in South Dakota, Nebraska, Colorado and Wyoming. After three years of this kind of life he returned to Illinois and in Lafayette, Illinois engaged in the meat market business, continuing the same until 1884. He then located in Sumner County Kansas, near Arkansas City and engaged in agricultural enterprises and stock raising until the opening of the territory in 1889.
In April of 1889 Mr. Annis made the run from the north line and located a claim adjacent to what is now Perkins and to the east of the town. This claim was improved to the utmost and fitted with all modern appliances, and given over to general farming and stock-raising. The farm is the special pride of its owner in whose possession it still is, and it is accounted one of the finest and best managed and cultivated claims in the county. While living on his claim, Mr. Annis also engaged, at times, in the merchandise business in Perkins and later in the meat market trade, and for the carrying on of his enterprises, built a frame store.
In 1896 Mr. Annis was nominated on the Populist ticket for sheriff and was elected by one hundred forty four popularity over his opponents. In 1898 he was re-nominated on the fusion ticket and was the only one on the ticketed that was elected. He took the oath of office in January, 1897, and served until January of 1901. After his first election he settled in Stillwater where he built a residence, his farm providing relaxation from the worries and cares of public political life. In 1900 he was one of the organizers of the Ripley State Bank and is vice president and director of the same. He is also Grand Organizer of the Fraternal Order of American Farmers and is a charter member of the same. For six years he served as a trustee and assessor of Perkins Township. Fraternally, he is associated with the Masonic order and is a member of Frontier Lodge No. 6, A.F.&A.M> at Stillwater. He is also a member of the Independent Order of Odd Fellows and is a past officer of Perkins Lodge No. 21 and the Encampment.
In Knox County, Illinois, Mr. Annis was united in marriage with Sarah J. Porter, a native of Illinois and a daughter of Otis Porter, a merchant in Knox county. Of this union, there have been six children viz: Frank, Orva, Allie, Roy, Jesse and Nellie.