1914 Biographies
E & F

History of Franklin County, Iowa by I. L. Stuart. 2 vols. Chicago: S. J. Clarke Pub. Co., 1914.
Transcribed by Don Turner, former coordinator of this website.

Frank Eberhart

Frank Eberhart, carrying on general farming and stock-raising upon one hundred and sixty acres on section 36, Mott township, was born in Fulton county, New York, March 28, 1854. He is a son of Henry and Betsy (La Deau) Eberhart, the former a native of Germany and the latter of New York. They moved to Illinois in 1866 and afterward settled in southern Iowa, where they remained three years. The father died at Creston, and his wife has also passed away. Six children were born to their union: Menzo and Alonzo, twins, who have passed away; Margaret, the wife of Dewitt Wilson, of Plainfield, Illinois; Frank, of this review; Melissa, the wife of Arnold Thayer, of Moline, Illinois; and Sarah, who married Charles Kern, of Des Moines, Iowa.

Frank Eberhart was reared at home and acquired a public-school education. He moved to Franklin county in 1887 and since that time has been connected with agricultural interests here, owning today one hundred and sixty acres on section 36, Mott township. Upon this property he engages in general farming and has met with that success which always follows earnest and persistent labor.

On the 29th of December, 1881, Mr. Eberhart was united in marriage to Miss Mary Costello, a native of Will county, Illinois, and a daughter of Daniel and Mary Costello, natives of Ireland who came to America in their early years and located in Illinois where the father passed away. The mother afterward came to Franklin county, Iowa, where her death occurred. They were the parents of two children: William James, of Hampton; and Mary, wife of the subject of this review. Mr. and Mrs. Eberhart are the parents of a daughter, Mary Elizabeth, now the wife of Clarence Moore.

Mr. Eberhart is a republican in his political views and interested in the growth and development of Franklin county. During a period of residence here covering twenty-six years he has become widely and favorably known, his upright and honorable life commanding for him the respect and confidence of all with whom he comes in contact.


Thomas Corwin Ellis

Among the younger farmers of Morgan township, Franklin county, who have already achieved success, is Thomas Corwin Ellis, who was born in this county, October 10, 1873, a son of Jacob and Caroline (Root) Ellis, the father a native of Illinois, and the mother of Ohio. They made settlement in Franklin county in 1869, locating in Morgan township near Dows. Both father and mother have passed away. They were the parents of five children: Hattie, who married Julius Malnory, of Dows, Iowa; John, who makes his home with Mr. Ellis of this review; Clara, the wife of Warren Le Barron, of Morgan township; Ida, who has passed away; and Thomas Corwin, our subject.

Thomas Corwin Ellis was reared under the parental roof and attended school in the neighborhood of his father's farm. He remained with the latter on the home place until the father passed away but in 1893 bought twenty-five acres of land on section 20, Morgan township. That he has met with good success is evident from the fact that he now owns two hundred and eighty acres, which, he devotes to general farming and stock-raising. Mr. Ellis has made excellent improvements upon his land, and his buildings are in good repair. He follows the most up-to-date methods in farming, and has already achieved a substantial position in Morgan township.

The marriage of Thomas Corwin Ellis and Ada Loucks occurred on May 9, 1893, and to them were born four children: Clesson L.; Vae and John, both deceased; and Caroline L., at home. Mr. Ellis is a republican. He has been township assessor and township clerk and has discharged the duties of these offices satisfactorily to all concerned. He is a Presbyterian and takes interest in church work. Both he and his wife are well and favorably known in Morgan township and have many friends in that neighborhood.


Evan Engebretson
Evan Engebretson Mattie (Johnson) Engebretson

Mr. & Mrs. Evan Engebretson

Evan Engebretson, living in retirement in a comfortable home on Maple street, in Hampton, was born in Norway, March 5, 1851. He is a son of Ole and Agnes (Peterson) Engebretson, also natives of Norway, who came to America in 1857, locating in Wisconsin, where the father engaged in farming. They afterward came by wagon to Butler county, Iowa, and thence to Blackhawk county, where they remained until 1868. In that year they came to Franklin county and located in Richland township, where the father died February 3, 1905, having survived his wife since December 20, 1898. To their union were born five children: Evan, of this review; Peter, of Thornton, Iowa; Martin, a. resident of Sheffield; Ella, the wife of W. H. Rowe; and Gina, of Thornton.

Evan Engebretson remained with his father until he was twenty-one years of age and then began farming upon rented land, continuing thus until 1880. In that year he bought one hundred and sixty acres in Richland township and to this added from time to time, owning today a half section in Richland township and one hundred and sixty acres in West Fork township. Mr. Engebretson developed and improved this property for twenty-two years, bringing it to a high state of cultivation and winning for himself a place among the .representative and substantial agriculturists of the community. In 1902 he retired from active life and moved into Hampton, where he owns a comfortable and modern home on Maple street.

On the 10th of November, 1873, Mr. Engebretson married Miss Mattie Johnson and they have become the parents of four children: Annie, the wife of James Skinner, of Thornton; Oscar, who is, engaged in the real-estate business in Hampton, and who married Lillian Gottrell; Edwin, of Hampton; and Arthur, of Hampton. Mr. Engebretson is a member of the Methodist Episcopal church and gives his political allegiance to the prohibition party, serving at the present time as school director. During his active career he contributed substantially to the agricultural development of his locality and his present retirement is well deserved, rewarding many years of earnest and faithful labor.


John Enslin

John Enslin owns and operates one hundred and sixty acres of fine land on section 9, Osceola township, and in the ten years during which he has owned this property has made it one of the valuable farms in Franklin county. He was born in Germany, September 7, 1851, and is a son of Christian and Anna Maria (Ilg) Enslin, also natives of the fatherland, where both passed away. In their family were three children: Caroline, residing in Germany; John, of this review; and Marie, the wife of Charles Sturtz, of Pittsburg, Pennsylvania.

John Enslin was reared in Germany and acquired his education in the public schools of that country. He there remained until 1903 and emigrated to America, settling immediately in Franklin county, Iowa. In the same year, he bought one hundred and sixty acres of land on section 9, Osceola township, and has since carried forward the work of improving and developing this property, providing it with substantial buildings and modern equipment. He engages in general farming and also raises and feeds stock, his interests along both lines being extensive and important.

On the 25th of September, 1879, Mr. Enslin was united in marriage to Miss Christiane Marie Mails, and they have become the parents of eight children: Henry, of Osceola; Ernest, of California; Marie, the wife of Albert Hofmeister, of California; August, also a resident of that state; and Martha, Herman Carl, Johannah and George, all at home. Mr. Enslin is a member of the Evangelical church and gives his political allegiance to the republican party. During the ten years of his residence here he has become well known throughout this part of the county, and he enjoys to the fullest extent the confidence and good-will of those with whom he has been brought in contact.


John Erickson

John Erickson is one of that hardy band of Swedish pioneers who came to this country in search of opportunity and found a successful field of labor in agricultural pursuits. He now owns a valuable farm in Morgan township, Franklin county, where he engages in general farming and stock-raising. He was born in Sweden, November 2, 1845, and is a son of Erick and Carrie Erickson, both of whom passed away in their native land. They were the parents of seven children: John P., deceased; Carrie, who has also passed away; Erick, of Franklin county; a daughter who died in childhood; John, our subject; and Johannah and Carolina, both of whom have passed away.

John Erickson acquired a limited education in his native land, for at the early age of fourteen he began to earn his own living, engaging in mining. When twenty-three years of age he went to Illinois, remaining one year, and then removed to Michigan, which state he made his home for five years. At the end of that period he came to Franklin county and, having carefully saved his earnings, was enabled to buy eighty acres of land on section 8, Morgan township. He sold this later and then acquired title to eighty acres on section 4. Diligently applying himself to the task at hand, he acquired the means to add to his holdings, buying at one time eighty acres within the same section and at another time forty acres on section 10. His farm now comprises two hundred acres and there he is successful in general agricultural pursuits and stock-raising. He has made a number of excellent improvements upon the land and his buildings are in good repair. His fields are under a high state of cultivation and yield him bountiful harvests.

On February 9, 1878, Mr. Erickson married Miss Christina Larson and to them were born eleven children: Ada, the wife of E. Oleson; Iva, who married Carl Erickson, of Dows; Lillie, the wife of Jesse Hagen, of Morgan township; Pearl, who married Adolph Swanson, of Des Moines; Mabel, the wife of Wayne Cooper, of Morgan township; Ione, the wife of W. H. Korth, also of Morgan township; Walter J., Milford Theodore and Edna, at home; Gladys, deceased; and Maud, also at home.

Mr. Erickson is a representative agriculturist of the middle west, ambitious, energetic and successful. He is a republican and votes for the candidates of his party. He interests himself in the cause of education and for some time was school director of his district. He holds membership in the Free Mission church. Mr. Erickson stands high in the confidence and regard of his friends and neighbors.


David W. Evans

David W. Evans, who during a period of connection with the bar of Franklin county dating from 1903 until his death, on the 14th of September, 1913, won a position of honor and distinction among the leading lawyers of Hampton, was born in Racine, Wisconsin, April 10, 1858. He was a son of Evan J. and Ann (Davis) Evans, natives of Wales. He acquired his education in the public schools of Racine, Wisconsin, and later entered Iowa State University, graduating from the liberal arts course in 1886 and from the law course in 1891. For two years following the completion of his studies he practiced his profession in Des Moines and from there went to Pipestone, Minnesota, where he resided until his brother, W. D. Evans, of Hampton, was elected district judge in the fall of 1902, when he came to Hampton and took up his brother's practice. He remained a resident of this city until his death, building up a large and representative patronage connecting him with a great deal of important litigation, and he became known as one of the foremost lawyers in this section of the state.

On the 11th of January, 1899, Mr. Evans married Miss Chell Brundage, a native of Michigan City, Indiana. They became the parents of two children: Lyman Parker, who has passed away; and Walter Chapin.

Mr. Evans was a member of the Congregational church, gave his political allegiance to the republican party and belonged to the Knights of Pythias. Some idea of his standing in the eyes of the community may be gained from the following paragraph taken from a local newspaper. "David Evans' death comes as a personal loss, not only to his family and relatives, but to a host of warm friends, who regarded him as one of nature's noblemen. Born of a long line of righteous ancestors, from them he inherited his stalwart character and spiritual nature. He was always genial, gentle and non-aggressive in temperament and at heart was tender as a child. He was a lawyer of fine ability and honored his calling. Its smaller controversies did not hold his attention, but he handled its larger questions with a master mind. His kindness and integrity made him a trusted counselor. Words cannot describe the sorrow now in his home where he was always cheerful--a comrade, friend and lover. A happy marriage; two little sons, one of blessed memory and one a sturdy lad of ten years, made the relations of an ideal home. Friends gathered around him naturally and loved him. In his associations with them his larger knowledge of interesting things, easy familiarity with literature, keen sense of humor and ready wit, made him a prince. In literature he had also creative ability and if his bedtime stories to his boy could be gathered up and printed, the volume would be a classic for children. So much for gifts, but his real strength was righteousness, which he carried into every phase of his daily life. David Evans will be missed in the business and social circles of Hampton where he took an active part. His cheery greeting will be missed by countless acquaintances. The world needs men like him. Humanity needs men of his type."


Edward I. Evans

Many of our American citizens of Norwegian birth have achieved, success along agricultural lines in this country. Among them is Edward I. Evans, who owns a valuable farm of one hundred and twenty acres on section 34, Morgan township, from which he receives a gratifying income. Mr. Evans was born in Norway, May 20, 1877, and is a son of Ingebret and Gertrude Oleson, natives of Norway, who came to America in 1887, locating in Wright county, where both are still living. They were the parents of fourteen children: Edward I.; Bertha, who married Paul Lynn, of Hartland, Minnesota; Ole, of Iowa Falls; Christian, of Hamilton county, of this state; Marion, of Hardin county; Matilda, Albert, Gunda, Mott and Bernice, at home; and four who died in infancy.

At the age of ten years Edward I. Evans earned money for his own support, herding cattle until fourteen years of age on the prairie. He was then engaged in farming for ten years but in 1901 bought one hundred and twenty acres on section 34, Morgan township, which he has since cultivated. All of the improvements have been made by him and success has come to him in return for honesty, industry and energy, He engages in general farming and his acres are under high cultivation.

On October 13, 1900, Mr. Evans was united in marriage to Miss Marie Gunnell Hanson, a daughter of Carl Hanson, who is more extensively mentioned in another part of this volume. Mr. and Mrs. Evans have six children: Alvin C., Ernest L., Gladys R., Manwell H., Carl I. and Edna Vernetta, all at home.

Edward I. Evans, although young in years, has achieved a fair measure of success, along agricultural lines and is considered one of the substantial men of Morgan township. He is a member of the Lutheran church and is interested in its work. Mr. Evans has many friends in the neighborhood and is highly regarded by all who know him.


Frank Evans

Frank & Maria (Peterson) Evans
Mr. and Mrs. Frank Evans

Frank Evans, a sturdy son of Norway, came to America to court fortune, and fortune has come to him as a result of his indefatigable labor and energy. Mr. Evans now owns a valuable farm of two hundred and eighty acres in Oakland township, Franklin county, and is considered one of the prosperous farmers of the neighborhood. The goal which he set himself in his youth-to achieve financial independence-he has attained. Mr. Evans was born in the land of the midnight sun on July 2, 1840. His parents were Andrew and Mary Evans, both natives of Norway, who came to America in 1857 with their family, when our subject was seventeen years of age. They located in Green county, Wisconsin, and there the father passed away shortly after his arrival, in 1857. The mother also died in Green county, that state. To them were born six children, of whom two are living: Mary, who married Erick Larson; and Frank, our subject. Mary, Ellen, Martha and Lucy have passed away.

Frank Evans attended school in his native land and after coming to this country engaged in farm labor. In 1868 he came to Franklin county and bought eighty acres of land on section 18. To this tract he has added from time to time until he now owns two hundred and eighty acres, one hundred and twenty of which are on section 7. The family home, however, which is one of the handsome country residences of the neighborhood, is situated on section 18. Mr. Evans gives particular attention to stock-raising outside of his general farming. His buildings are in good repair, and the farm bespeaks by its appearance the prosperity of the owner. Success has come to him in reward of close application and modern ideas as to the best farming methods to employ.

Mr. Evans was united in marriage to Christina Maria Peterson, a native of Norway. To this union one son was born, Elman Merrill, of Emmet county, Iowa. After the death of his first wife, Mr. Evans married Maria Johanna Peterson, who was born in Wisconsin and who is a sister of the first Mrs. Evans. Her parents came to Franklin county in 1869, and there they lived until late in life. They removed to Wright county, where both passed away. In their family were ten children: Helena, the widow of L. Johnson, of Alden, Iowa; Peter, deceased; Margaret, the widow of O. Snuggin, of Dows, Iowa; Henry, deceased; Christina, the first wife of Mr. Evans; Caroline, deceased; Otto, also deceased; Maria Johanna, who is now Mrs. Evans; Theodore, deceased; and Johanna, who died in infancv. Mr. and Mrs., Evans became the parents of two children: Calhoun O., who, was born June 15, 1887, and who is at home assisting his father on the farm; and Matilda Christina, born April 3, 1892, who died two days later.

Mr. Evans is a republican and stanchly votes for the measures and candidates of his party. He has interested himself in the public welfare and has served as township trustee. He also has been for a number of years school treasurer of Oakland township, and the cause of education has found in him a warm friend. He is a member of the Lutheran church. Mr. Evans is a representative farmer of Franklin county and one of those men who have helped to make Iowa the richest agricultural state within the Union.


Judge William D. Evans

Judge William D. Evans
Judge William D. Evans

Judge William D. Evans, of the Iowa supreme court bench, was born May 10, 1852, a son of Evan J. Evans, who was born in 1810, in the country of Wales. In 1847, he became a resident of Utica, New York, where he remained for one year. Subsequently, he removed to Racine, Wisconsin, where in 1849 he married Ann Davis, also a native of Wales , and afterward went to Williamsburg, Iowa, where he continued to preach as a minister of the Congregational church. He was a prominent representative of the clergy of that denomination and devoted his life to this holy calling. He passed away on the 18th of January, 1884, and is survived by Mrs. Evans, who yet resides in Williamsburg.

Judge William D. Evans, one of a family of eleven children, seven of whom are now living, was largely reared in Williamsburg, acquiring his early education in the schools of that city. In 1873 however, he became a student in the Iowa State University and in 1878 completed the literary course and in 1879 the law course. He taught school both before and after his graduation but regarded that merely as an initial step to other professional activity. In September, 1879, he came to Hampton, where he became a member of the law firm of Tavlor & Evans. They enjoyed an extensive practice, having clients throughout the northern part of the stateMr. Evans was recognized as one of the eminent attorneys of the northern Iowa bar. It was evident from the beginning that he prepared his cases with great thoroughness and skill, and the logic of his deductions was based upon a comprehensive knowledge and understanding of the law combined with the ability to accurately apply its principles. Recognition of his power in the courts came to him when, on the 1st of January, 1903, he became district judge of the eleventh judicial district of Iowa, after the election held previously in the fall of 1902. One competent to judge said: "Few men have filled the position as well and none better." He served a four years' term and the endorsement of his judicial ability came to him in his reelection in 1907. He had previously served as county attorney. In 1908, following the death of Judge Bishop, of the Iowa supreme court, judge Evans was appointed to fill out the unexpired term and at the subsequent election was chosen to serve until 1910. At the regular election of that year he was once more returned to the bench for the regular six years' term, which will continue him as a member of Iowa’s highest tribunal until 1916. He is recognized as the peer of the ablest who have sat in this court of last resort. He is ever clear in his interpretation of the law, and his opinions are based upon a comprehensive review of the evidence. Strictly impartial at all times, they are to be regarded as models of judicial soundness, and his fitness and ability for the high position which he holds are indicated by the strong endorsement which he received from the bar of the state. While in active practice he handled many interesting cases, both civil and criminal, the court records of the state bearing testimony to his talent, his resourcefulness and his power in handling and assembling facts and in indicating clearly their close relation to given principles of law..

On the 29th of October, I879, Judge Evans was united in marriage to Miss Julia Stark, a daughter of Benjamin Barber and Adelaide A. (Wise) Stark, of Woodstock, Illinois, the former a prominent farmer and teacher there. Judge and Mrs. Evans have become the parents of six children: Evan Stark, born October 20, 1880, a promising physician at Grinnell, Iowa; William Donald, who was born July 2, 1882, and is a well known attorney at Des Moines; Julia Gwendolyn, who was born October 15, 1885, and is now the wife of E. J. Jagua, assistant to the president of Grinnell College; Alice Adelaide, born November 18, 1887; John Stark, July 27, 1891 ; and David Benjamin, February 12, 1900. Five of the children are graduates of Grinnell College.

Judge Evans has always been interested in the cause of education and has done effective work as a helpful member of the school board of Hampton. Aside from his profession he is widely known in public connections. He is one of the stockholders of the Citizens National Bank, is an extensive landowner of Franklin county, and aside from his activities for individual profit he is well known for his activities in support of progressve public movements looking to the betterment and welfare of town, county and state. In politics he is a stanch republican, believing firmly in the basic principles of the party. He is equally staunch in his opposition to the saloon and in this as in all other things is well balanced, for he does not believe in the revolutionary methods which some would follow in doing away with the liquor traffic. In the Congregational church, of which he is a member, he has served as trustee and is now a deacon. His home is the largest and most attractively furnished residence in the town, and its hospitality is greatly appreciated by the many friends of the family. Judge Evans' interests are many and varied and each have to do with progress in some way. His professional career has been one of steady advancement from the position of an obscure and unknown attorney to that of judge of the supreme court. It is a well known fact that advancement at the bar is proverbially slow and that only merit can win recognition in the difficult and arduous profession of the law. Close study, persistency and a wise use of the talents with which nature endowed him have brought Judge Evans to the distinguished position which he now occupies.


John M. Fahey

John M. Fahey, a native of Franklin county, is closely connected with agricultural interests of Osceola township, operating a farm of one hundred and sixty acres on section 33, He was born upon this property December 19, 1884, and is a son of Thomas and Mary (Holloran) Fahey, who are now living retired in Ackley. In this family were nine children: Ligouri, the wife of Samuel Martin, of George, Iowa; John M., of this review; Mary Ellen, who married James Parden, of George, Iowa; Thomas, deceased; Irene, at home; Viola, who has passed away; Robert, Laura and Floyd, of Ackley.

John M. Fahey was reared at home and from his early childhood assisted with the operation of the farm, learning in this way the best and most practical methods of farm operation. In 1911 he rented the homestead, comprising one hundred and sixty acres on section 33, Osceola township, and here he has since engaged in general farming and stock-raising. He has followed always the most practical and progressive methods and has met with excellent success in the conduct of his interests.

On the 28th of December, 1910, Mr. Fahey was united in marriage to Miss Clara Breithaupt, a daughter of George.F. and Nellie (Jenkins) Breithaupt, the former a native of Germany and the latter of St. John, New Brunswick. The parents came to Iowa in 1871 and the father conducted a hotel in Ackley until his death June 28, 1913. His wife survives him and makes her home in Ackley. Twelve children were born to their union: Annie, deceased; Helena, the wife of Alex Thompson of Marshalltown, Iowa; Matilda, who married Henry Smith, of Wichita, Kansas; Ada, who has passed away; Catherine, the wife of William Neary, of Butte, Montana; George L., also of Butte; Frank, deceased; Lillian, of Charles City, Iowa; Leo, of Columbus, Ohio; Lulu, who has passed away; Clara, the wife of the subject of this review; and Harry, of Columbus, Ohio.

Mr. Fahey is a member of the Catholic church and connected fraternally with the Knights of Columbus. His political allegiance is given to the democratic party, and although he is not active as an office seeker, he served with credit and ability as school director. He is a young man of energy, enterprise and ambition, and he has become widely and favorably known in his native township for his many sterling traits of character.


Frank P. Finn

Frank P. Finn, carrying on general farming and stock-raising ,on two hundred and forty acres of land on section 16, Geneva township, was born in Green county, Wisconsin, May 18, 1869. He is a son of John and Cecilia (McGuire) Finn, the former a native of Ireland and the latter of London, Ontario. The father went to Canada when he was about twenty-two years of age, later removed to Green county, Wisconsin, and thence came to Iowa in 1870, locating on section 16, Geneva township, Franklin county, where both he and his wife passed away. Eight children were born to them: James, of Nebraska; Mary Jane, deceased; Josephine C., of Mason City, Iowa; John L., a resident of Nebraska; Jarvis C., deceased; William W., of Kossuth county, Iowa; Frank P., of this review; and Norbert E., of Dumont.

Frank P. Finn was one year old when his parents came to this county, and he was reared, upon his father's farm here, acquiring his education in the district schools. He began his independent career operating the homestead, and he continued thus until 1901, when he went to Geneva, thence to Dumont and then to Shell Rock, where he was in the butcher business for one year. He was obliged to dispose of that enterprise on account of ill health and was prevented for the same reason from engaging in any other occupation for four years thereafter. At the end of that time he was elected mayor of Dumont and served for two years, giving to the city a straightforward and businesslike administration. In 1910 he purchased the interests of the other heirs in his father's homestead in Geneva township and has since carried on general farming and stock-raising on this property. It comprises two hundred and forty acres and is provided with substantial barns and outbuildings and all the necessary equipment of a model farm.

On the 19th of October, 1910, Mr. Finn was united in marriage to Miss Bertha E. Morrison, of Jones county, Iowa, who had previously been engaged in school teaching. She is the daughter of Thomas A. and Sina Catherine (McMurrin) Morrison, of Blackhawk county. Mr. and Mrs. Finn have two children: Gwyneth Lu Sina, born November 16, 1911; and Anna Cecilia, born May, 27, 1913.

Mr. Finn is a member of the Knights of Pythias and gives his political allegiance to the democratic party. He is not only industrious and enterprising but also a man of high moral character, and greatly esteemed both as a citizen and a business man throughout the township.


Franklin County State Bank

The Franklin County State Bank is one of the oldest of the financial institutions of Hampton and this part of the state. It was organized in 1872 as a private bank by the firm of Latimer and Kellam. It was twenty years later when Mr.Beed became cashier of the institution at which time it was the property of the firm of Benson, Hays & Parks. It was made a state bank in 1905 with a capital stock of seventy-five thousand dollars fully paid in. The bank was incorporated at that time with Mr. Beed as president; H. L. Harrison, cashier, and G. F. Beed, vice president. At this writing in 1913, its officers are A. W. Beed, president; Dr. J. C. Powers, vice president; N. A. Inglis, cashier; and F. H. Ridgeway, assistant cashier. The directors of the bank in addition to the officers are: G. F. Beed, F. J. Scantlebury, B. D. Hunt, George D. Patterson, Jacob Pohl, C. F. Showalter, F. D. Smith and A. W. Wolf. This bank offers to depositors every facility which their balances, business and responsibility warrant. The condensed statement of the condition of the Franklin County State Bank shows loans and discounts amounting to six hundred and eighteen thousand, three hundred and ten dollars and thirty three cents. Cash on hand and due from banks one hundred and sixty-two thousand, seven hundred and fifty-four dollars and eighty cents with real estate and personal property amounting to fifteen thousand dollars. The bank is capitalized for seventy-five thousand dollars has a surplus of twenty-five thousand dollars, and undivided profits of more than twenty-three thousand dollars, with deposits of more than six hundred and seventy-two thousand dollars. All this indicates the excellent standing of the bank and the capability of the management.


John Fraser

John & Mahala (Mason) Fraser
Mr. & Mrs. John Fraser

John Fraser, living retired in Bradford after many years of close and successful connection with agricultural interests of Franklin county, was born in Wisconsin on the 11th of March, 1849. He is a son of John W. and Jane M. (McIntyre) Fraser, natives of New York, of Scotch ancestry. They came to Iowa in 1870 and located on a farm on section 1, Lee township, whereon the father resided until his death, which occurred October 5, 1886. His wife survived him many years, dying September 7, 1903. To their union were born eight children: William, who has passed away; James K., of Big Bend, Wisconsin; John, the subject of this review; Mary Jane, the wife of P. L. Loss; Belle, at home; Allan and Joseph, deceased; and Eleanor, at home.

John Fraser came to Iowa with his parents in 1870 and since that time he has been a resident of Franklin county. During his father's lifetime he aided in the operation of the homestead and afterward came into possession of the property. He engaged in general farming and stock-raising in Lee township for many years, winning a gratifying personal success and also contributing in substantial measure to general growth and progress. He has sold his eighty acres of the homestead and has moved into Bradford, where he lives retired.

On the 24th of November, 1875, Mr. Fraser was united in marriage to Miss Mahala E. Mason, a native of Indiana and a daughter of Thomas and Mahala (Puckett) Mason, natives of North Carolina. In their family were nine children: Nathan and Giley, deceased; Elwood, a resident of Missouri; Clarinda, deceased; Isam, of Nebraska; James, who died during the Civil war; Talitha, the wife of George W. Ganfield, of Minnesota; Mahala E., the wife of the subject of this review; and a daughter, who died in infancy.

Mr. and Mrs. Fraser became the parents of five children: Mabel, who died in infancy; Arthur, a resident of North Dakota; Donald, of Franklin county; Winnifred, residing in Hardin county; and Violet E., the wife of Lee Miller, of Franklin county. Donald married Miss Mabel Miller, and they have three children: Ronald, born November 22, 1907; Pearl, born December 6, 1909; and Steril, born May 26, 1913. Mrs. Fraser is a member of the Christian church, and Mr. Fraser gives his political allegiance to the republican party. He has served as supervisor and as a member of the school board and in matters of citizenship has been found always helpful and progressive, eager to cooperate in measures of advancement or reform. By a life which has been straightforward and honorable in all its relations he has won the confidence and respect of all who have come in contact with him.


John L. French

Since 1866 John L. French has made his home in Franklin county and has become well known here as an able business man and a useful citizen. For a long period he was connected with mercantile interests of Faulkner but for a number of years past has been engaged in writing insurance. He is a veteran of the Civil war and loyal and public-spirited in matters of citizenship. Mr. French was born in Vermont, October 16, 1845, and is a son of Thomas and Sarah (Webster) French, the former a native of New York and the latter of Vermont. The father spent his entire active life engaged in farming, dying in 1850. He was survived by his wife until 1866. both passing away in Vermont. To their union were born nine children: Shepard, Reuben, James and Marinda, deceased; John L., of this review; Ann. and Martha, who have passed away; Julina; and Hattie, deceased.

John L. French was reared in Vermont and at the age of sixteen enlisted in Company D, Ninth Vermont Volunteer Infantry, for service in the Civil war. He was discharged at Annapolis, Maryland, in November, 1863, and on the 1st of June, 1864, reenlisted as a member of the One Hundred and Forty-second Illinois Volunteer Infantry. He was captured at Winchester, Virginia, and was a prisoner for five months, this time being spent in Libby prison and in the prison at Belle Island. He was mustered out of service with his honorable discharge at Chicago, Illinois, and in 1866 came to Franklin county, Iowa, where for a few years he engaged in farming near Faulkner. Later he established himself in the general merchandise business in the town and built up a large and representative patronage, for his goods were always of a high quality and his business methods above reproach. Mr. French served as postmaster of Faulkner for a number of years, doing conscientious and capable work in this office. He has since discontinued these connections and for the past few years has been engaged in writing insurance.

On the 7th of November, 1875 Mr. French was united in marriage to Miss Mary Riddle, a native of Franklin county and a daughter of James Henry and Elizabeth (Millslagel) Riddle, the former a native of North Carolina and the latter of Pennsylvania. The father served in the Civil war and was wounded in battle, later dying at the hospital. Mr. and Mrs. French became the parents of six children: George, who has passed away; a daughter who died in infancy; Elmer and Elizabeth, deceased; Grace, the wife of Louis Reiken, of Hardin county; and Cora, at home.

Mr. French is a member of the Methodist church and is connected with the Grand Army of the Republic. He gives his political allegiance to the republican party and for a period of fifteen years did able and conscientious work as clerk of the school board. During the forty-eight years he has lived in Franklin county he has contributed in substantial measure to general growth and advancement and has won for himself a high place in the esteem and confidence of many friends.


A. J. Froning

A. J. Froning, the present mayor of Sheffield, owns an elevator here and has been successfully engaged in the grain and coal business at this place for the past three years. He likewise owns a valuable farm of two hundred acres east of Sheffield. His birth occurred near Freeport, Stephenson county, Illinois, on the 2d of September, 1866, his parents being August and Margaret (Bohen) Froning, who were born, reared and married in Germany. In 1857 or 1858 they emigrated to the United States, locating in Stephenson county, Illinois. In 1885 August Froning disposed of his property there and came to Franklin county, Iowa, settling in Ross township, where he owned and cultivated a half section of land. He won a gratifying measure of success in his undertakings as an agriculturist and spent his last days in honorable retirement, residing for a year at Hampton and for four years at Sheffield, where his demise occurred when he had attained the age of seventy-seven. His wife passed away on the farm at the age of fifty-nine years. Both were devoted members of the German Baptist church, and Mr. Froning gave his political allegiance to the republican party, holding a number of minor township offices. To him and his wife were born eight children, as follows: one who died in infancy; T. D., who passed away at Grundy Center, Iowa, when thirty-three years of age; John, who is a resident of Richland township; Katie, the wife of August Wilkins, of Lorraine, Kansas; Henry J., living in Frederick, Kansas; H. E., who is engaged in the real-estate business at Chapin, Iowa; Lizzie, who gave her hand in marriage to H. Van Deest, of New Hartford, Iowa; and A. J., of this review.

The last named spent his boyhood on his father's farm in Stephenson county and was a young man of nineteen when he came with his parents to Franklin county, Iowa. On attaining his majority he started out as an agriculturist on his own account, purchasing a tract of eighty-nine acres south of Sheffield and residing thereon for three years. He then came into possession of a farm near Geneva, the operation of which claimed his attention for two years. Subsequently he was engaged in the grain and coal business at Geneva for three years and next spent a year at New Hartford in the same lines. Mr. Froning later purchased the farm of his father-in-law east of Sheffield, remaining thereon for a year, on the expiration of which period he embarked in the grain and elevator business at Allison, Butler county, Iowa, where he was thus engaged for three years. In 1905 he bought two elevators at Sheffield and conducted them for two years, at the end of which time he sold out and purchased the farm belonging to the Jensen estate, which lies east of Sheffield. The property comprises two hundred acres of rich and productive land and is still in his possession. For the past three years, however, he has been engaged in the grain and coal business at Sheffield, owning an elevator here. He has won prosperity in his different ventures and has long been numbered among the substantial, representative and leading citizens of the community.

In Franklin county, Mr. Froning wedded Miss Nellie Scott, a native of Hardin county and a daughter of Lonsdale Scott. They have eleven children, as follows: Arthur C., who is married and lives on his father's farm east of Sheffield; Ollie, the wife of Walter DeVoe, of Elberon, Iowa, who is associated with his father-in-law in the ownership of a lumberyard there; Pearl, a school teacher by profession; Alfred; August; Lonsdale; Nellie; Margaret; Grace; and Robert and Richard, twins, who are in their second year.

Mr. Froning is a republican in politics and has been honored by election to the office of mayor in Sheffield, his administration being characterized by measures of reform and improvement along various lines. He has likewise done valuable service as a member of the city council. His religious faith is indicated by his membership in the Baptist church, while fraternally he is identified with the Independent Order of Odd Fellows at Sheffield. In all his business and social relations he is straightforward and reliable, enjoying the full confidence of those with whom he is associated.


H. E. Froning

H. E. Froning, a prosperous and representative citizen of Chapin, is here engaged in the real-estate business, dealing in Iowa and Minnesota lands. His birth occurred in Stephenson county, Illinois, on the 9th of June, 1862, his parents being August and Margaret (Bohen) Froning, of whom more extended mention is made on another page of this work in connection with the sketch of A J. Froning, a brother of our subject.

H. E. Froning attended the common schools of his native state in the acquirement of an education and was a young man of twenty-three years when he came with his parents to Franklin county, Iowa, in 1885. He assisted in the operation of the home farm, located east of Sheffield, until the time of his marriage and then purchased an unimproved tract of land comprising one hundred and sixty acres on section 36, Ross township. The improvement and cultivation of that farm claimed his attention for a number of years. He erected a set of substantial buildings and carried on general agricultural pursuits successfully until 1902, when he removed to Chapin and purchased an elevator, engaging in the grain business until the spring of l912. Since that time he has devoted his attention to the real-estate business, dealing in Iowa and Minnesota lands. He owns an attractive residence in Chapin and owes his present prosperity entirely to his own efforts, having ever been industrious, energetic and thrifty. He assisted in the organization of the Chapin Savings Bank and has since remained a member of its board of directors.

As a companion and helpmate on the journey of life Mr. Froning chose Miss Anna Rust, who was born in Germany on the 13th of October, 1862. Her father, H. A. Rust, deceased, is mentioned at greater length on another page of this volume in connection with the sketch of H. A. Rust, Jr., a brother of Mrs. Froning. Our subject and his wife have four daughters and a son, namely: Margaret, Alice, Florence, Catherine and Herman, all at home.

Mr. Froning gives his political allegiance to the republican party and has promoted the interests of the cause of education as a member of the school board. In religious faith he is a Baptist, both he and his wife belonging to the church of that denomination at Sheffield. He has lived in this county for almost three decades and has long been numbered among its capable business men and esteemed citizens.


Oliver Fryslie

Oliver & Alice (Hanson) Fryslie
Mr. and Mrs. Oliver Fryslie

Oliver Fryslie is the owner of a valuable farm of two hundred and ten acres on section 7, Oakland township Franklin county. There he engages in general farming and stock-raising. His farm is noted for its fine improvements and Mr. Fryslie has achieved a reputation as a modern agriculturist who successfully follows the best approved methods. He was born in Green county, Wisconsin, .May 6, 1858, and is a son of Ole E. and Julia (Knutsen) Fryslie, natives of Norway. They came to America in the early '40s and located in Green county, Wisconsin. About 1876 they came to Franklin county, making settlement in Oakland township. The father died on November 25, 1899, and the mother when our subject was but six years of age. They had three children: Oliver; Andrew, of Dows; and Julia, who married Hans Hanson, of Dows. The father after the demise of his first wife married Ellen Nelson, who is now making her home at Fort -Dodge, Iowa. To this union were born the following children: Josephine Matilda, deceased wife of Ed Evans of Wright county; Bertha Maria, wife of Oscar Sime; Nim, of Oregon; Carrie, the widow of Fred Hoppe, of Hampton; Edward, of Burdette, Iowa; Albertine, deceased; Oscar, of Britton, South Dakota; Lena, the widow of Martin Losland, of Fort Dodge; Louise, who is married; Luella and Laura, of Fort Dodge; Frank, of Oakland township; Ida, of Fort Dodge; and two who died in infancy.

Oliver Fryslie remained with his father until he reached his twenty-first birthday. Becoming the owner of a team of horses, he then rented land and, breaking prairie, brought his rented tract under cultivation. Gradually he acquired the means which enabled him in 1892 to buy two hundred and ten acres on section 7, Oakland township, which he now farms. He is very prosperous in his undertakings, and gives much attention to stock-raising. He has made numerous valuable improvements, and his buildings are in excellent repair. The family home is two stories in height, acetylene lighted and modern in all its appointments.

On January 18, 1880, Mr. Fryslie married Miss Alice Hanson, a daughter of Ole and Mary Hanson, natives of Norway, who in 1869 made their way to Wisconsin. In that state they remained five years and then came to Oakland township, Franklin county. Both are deceased. They had seven children: Helena G., deceased; Andrew, of Belmond, Iowa; Mary, the wife of Ole L. Oleson, of Oakland township; Carrie, who married Ole W. Oleson, of Morgan, township, this county; Alice, the wife of our subject; and two sons who died in infancy. Mr. and Mrs. Fryslie became the parents of four children: Martha Julia, who married L. A. Anderson; Louis Raymond, at home; and two who died in infancy.

Mr. Fryslie is a republican and has ever staunchly voted for the candidates of that party. He is interested in matters of education and for some time has been a school director. His religion is that of the Lutheran church. Mr. Fryslie is an enterprising man and has contributed by his labor toward agricultural standards in Franklin county. He stands high in the estimation of his fellow citizens, and such success as has come to him is well merited.


1914 Biography Index

This page was last modified on November 14, 2006
2006 by IAGenWeb & the various submitters.