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Dewey F. Bartlett

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Title: Dewey F. Bartlett  
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Subject: David L. Boren, Governors of Oklahoma, Don Nickles, United States congressional delegations from Oklahoma, List of Governors of Oklahoma
Collection: 1919 Births, 1979 Deaths, American Roman Catholics, Cancer Deaths in Oklahoma, Deaths from Lung Cancer, Governors of Oklahoma, Lawrenceville School Alumni, Oklahoma Gubernatorial Candidates, Oklahoma Republicans, People from Marietta, Ohio, People from Tulsa, Oklahoma, Princeton University Alumni, Republican Party State Governors of the United States, Republican Party United States Senators, United States Marine Corps Officers, United States Senators from Oklahoma
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Dewey F. Bartlett

Dewey F. Bartlett
19th Governor of Oklahoma
In office
January 9, 1967 – January 11, 1971
Lieutenant George Nigh
Preceded by Henry Bellmon
Succeeded by David Hall
United States Senator
from Oklahoma
In office
January 3, 1973 – January 3, 1979
Preceded by Fred Roy Harris
Succeeded by David L. Boren
Personal details
Born Dewey Follett Bartlett
(1919-03-28)March 28, 1919
Marietta, Ohio
Died March 1, 1979(1979-03-01) (aged 59)
Tulsa, Oklahoma
Resting place Calvary Cemetery
Political party Republican
Spouse(s) Ann Chilton Smith
Profession Oilman
Religion Roman Catholic
Military service
Service/branch United States Marine Corps
Years of service 1942-1946
Battles/wars World War II

Dewey Follett Bartlett, Sr. (March 28, 1919 – March 1, 1979), a U.S. politician, served as the 19th Governor of Oklahoma from 1967 to 1971, following his same-party Republican predecessor, Henry Bellmon. In 1966, he became the first Roman Catholic elected governor of Oklahoma, defeating the Democratic nominee, Preston Moore of Oklahoma City. He was defeated for reelection in 1970 by Tulsa attorney David Hall in the closest election in state history. He was elected to the United States Senate in 1972 and served one term. In 1978, he was diagnosed with lung cancer and did not run for reelection that year. He died of the disease in 1979.[1]


  • Early life 1
  • Political career 2
  • Family 3
  • References 4
  • Further reading 5
  • External links 6

Early life

Dewey Follett Bartlett was born to David A. and Jessie Bartlett in Marietta, Ohio, and attended schools in Marietta and Lawrenceville, New Jersey.[1] Following his graduation from Princeton University with a degree in geological engineering in 1942, he served in the United States Marine Corps during World War II. After the war, he moved to Tulsa, Oklahoma, and held various jobs in farming, ranching, and the oil industry, inheriting ownership of the Tulsa-based Keener Oil and Gas Company from his father, David A. Bartlett.

Political career

Prior to becoming governor, he served in the Oklahoma Senate from 1962 to 1966.[2]

As governor, Bartlett made major changes to the Oklahoma Department of Corrections, pushed for school consolidation, and vetoed a school code bill.[3] In 1970, he was the first Oklahoma governor eligible to seek a second term.[3] In the general election, he was challenged by then-Tulsa County Attorney David Hall. In the closest gubernatorial election in state history, Hall unseated Bartlett by a vote of 338,338 to 336,157.[4]

Following his defeat, he served for one term in the U.S. Senate from 1973 to 1979 after winning the seat previously held by Democrat Fred R. Harris. He narrowly defeated U.S. Congressman Ed Edmondson in the 1972 election riding on President Richard Nixon's coattails. During his tenure in Congress, he took a conservative stance on most issues and championed oil and gas interests during the energy crisis of the 1970s. However, he suffered health problems and, rather than face a very difficult reelection against popular Democratic Governor David Boren, decided not to seek reelection. Two months after retiring from the U.S. Senate, he died in Tulsa from complications of lung cancer, and is buried in the city's Calvary Cemetery. In 1990 he was inducted into the Oklahoma CareerTech Hall of Fame[5] and in March, 2006, Congress passed a bill renaming the U.S. Post Office in Tulsa in his honor.[6]


Bartlett married Ann Smith, a native of Seattle, Washington on April 2, 1945 at Mission San Juan Capistrano in San Juan Capistrano, California.[7] They had three children: Dewey F. Bartlett, Jr., Michael and Joanie.[1] His son, Dewey F. Bartlett, Jr. has served as the mayor of Tulsa, Oklahoma, since 2009, as a former member of the Tulsa City Council from 1990 to 1994, and has inherited the Keener Oil and Gas Company from his father.

His grandson, Dewey Bartlett III, has served as the student body vice president of the University of Oklahoma for the 2009 - 2010 school year, where he received a degree in petroleum engineering.


  1. ^ a b c Burke, Bob. Encyclopedia of Oklahoma History and Culture. "Bartlett, Dewey Follett (1919 - 1979)." Retrieved November 23, 2012.[3]
  2. ^ Who is Who in the Oklahoma Legislature: 29th-36th, 1963-1978 Legislative Reference and Research Division, 1963.
  3. ^ a b Hudson, Geneva Johnston (AuthorHouse, 2005). Statesman or Rogue: Elected to Serve. ISBN 1-4208-2503-8
  4. ^ Cached biography from Oklahoma Department of Libraries
  5. ^ Gov. Dewey Bartlett, Oklahoma CareerTech Hall of Fame (accessed 2014-04-22).
  6. ^ [4]
  7. ^ Stanley, Tim. Ann Bartlett, former first lady, dies at 92, Tulsa World as published in The Oklahoman, January 27, 2013. (accessed June 30, 2013)

Further reading

  • Bonner, Jeremy (2007). The road to renewal: Victor Joseph Reed & Oklahoma Catholicism, 1905-1971. CUA Press.  
  • Smith, James (1993). Strategic calling: the Center for Strategic and International Studies, 1962-1992. CSIS.  

External links

  • 100 Years of Oklahoma Governors Biography
  • Dewey F. Bartlett at the Biographical Directory of the United States Congress. Retrieved May 5, 2013
  • "Dewey F. Bartlett".  
  • Encyclopedia of Oklahoma History and Culture - Bartlett, Dewey
  • Dewey F. Bartlett Collection and Photograph Collection at the Carl Albert Center
  • Voices of Oklahoma interview with Ann Bartlett. First person interview conducted with Ann Bartlett, Dewey Bartlett's wife, on June 5, 2010. Original audio and transcript archived with Voices of Oklahoma oral history project.
Political offices
Preceded by
Henry Bellmon
Governor of Oklahoma
January 9, 1967 – January 11, 1971
Succeeded by
David Hall
United States Senate
Preceded by
Fred Roy Harris
U.S. Senator (Class 2) from Oklahoma
1973 –1979
Served alongside: Henry Bellmon
Succeeded by
David Boren
Party political offices
Preceded by
Henry Bellmon
Republican nominee for Governor of Oklahoma
1966, 1970
Succeeded by
Jim Inhofe
Preceded by
Pat H. Patterson
Republican nominee for United States Senator from Oklahoma
(Class 2)

Succeeded by
Robert B. Kamm
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