IAGenWeb Project - Allamakee co.

Frank L. May


Allamakee county is fortunate in numbering among her public officials so able, efficient and far-sighted a man as Frank L. May, now serving as county attorney. His is in addition a successful and able lawyer, practicing at the bar as a member of the firm of May & Dempsey and connected through his representative patronage with much important litigation. He was born in Crawford county, Kansas, March 29, 1873, and is a son of Roan C. May, who was born in Summit county, Ohio, in 1838, and was a representative of one of the pioneer families in Iowa, his father, John May, having moved from Ohio to Allamakee county in 1852. He settled in Lansing township, on what is now known as May’s Prairie, and there entered land, opening up and developing a new farm. His son Roan was fourteen years of age when the removal was made and he spent the remaining years of his childhood and youth in helping in the work of clearing and improving the property. He later engaged in farming for himself in Lansing township but finally moved to Crawford county, Kansas, where he purchased land. Upon this he resided for seven years but at the end of that time moved back to Iowa and located in New Albin, where he now resides in retirement. He married in Allamakee county Miss Elizabeth Yeoman, a native of Illinois and also an early settler in Iowa, having come to this state in 1853.

Frank L. May was reared in his parents’ home and acquired his primary education in the public schools. After completing it he became a teacher and engaged in that occupation for five years before going to Valparaiso, Indiana, where he took up the study of law. After receiving his degree he went to South Dakota, locating at Madison, where he opened an office and began the practice of his profession, remaining there for one year. At the end of that time he returned to Iowa and made his home at Lansing, where he secured a large and representative patronage and won recognition as a strong and able practitioner, whose ability in the handling of intricate legal problems justified his classification with the most successful lawyers in the state. Mr. May remained in Lansing until 1910, when he was nominated and elected county attorney of Allamakee county. After the expiration of his first term of office he was reelected to the position which he is now filling, discharging his duties in an energetic and able way. He is connected also with the general practice of law here, for 1911 he formed a partnership with J. W. Dempsey a young man of excellent education and unusual legal ability, under the firm name of May & Dempsey. The partners are connected with much important litigation and the firm is known as strong and reliable.

Mr. May married, near Lansing, on the 2d of April, 1896, Miss Marie Goettle, who was born and reared in Allamakee county, a daughter of Carl Goettle, of this vicinity. Mr. and Mrs. May have one daughter, Marie H. E. Mr. May is a Master Mason, holding membership in Evergreen Lodge, No. 144, F. & A. M., at Lansing. He has proven himself in professional and official life an efficient and forceful worker, possessing a strength of perseverance which enable him to overcome difficulty and conquer obstacles. His analytical mind has proven valuable in his practice as well as in his public service and, whatever line claims his attention, his judgment is always sound and his methods practical.

-source: Past & Present of Allamakee County; by Ellery M. Hancock; S. J. Clarke Pub. Co.; 1913
-transcribed by Diana Diedrich

Return to 1913 biographies index