An American biographer, journalist, and two-time Pulitzer Prize recipient, he is best known for his biographies of Sam Houston and Andrew Jackson. His other works include Cherokee Strip: A Tale of an Oklahoma Boyhood and Merchant Adventurer: The Story of W.R. Grace.
He helped found The Quill, a student newspaper at his Enid, Oklahoma high school. He later worked for the New York Tribune and the American Legion Monthly.
He won his first Pulitzer Prize for his biography of Sam Houston.
He married reporter Bessie Williams Rowland in 1914. The couple had one daughter.
He won his second Pulitzer Prize in 1938 for his biography of Andrew Jackson.