Transcribed by Teresa Kesterke from: Biographical Review of Des Moines County, Iowa: Containing Biographical and Genealogical Sketches of Many of the Prominent Citizens of To-day and Also of the Past, Hobart Publishing Company, Chicago, 1905.


John Frantz, deceased, was a man whom to know was to honor and respect, for in all life's relations he was true to upright principles, and from his fellow-townsmen he received the esteem and friendship which is everywhere accorded genuine worth. He was a son of John and Elizabeth (Cleigh) Frantz, and was born in Annville, Pa., Sept. 3, 1821. His father died when Mr. Frantz was only five years of age, and the lad was adopted by a Mr. Hostetter, who was a farmer. There were four children in his father's family, all of whom are now dead. His mother died in 1873. He received his substantial education in the district schools in the neighborhood of his adoption. Soon after bidding adieu to his school books, Mr. Frantz learned the trade of a carriage-trimmer with the well-known firm of John Allwein, and after the completion of his trade he remained in Mr. Allwein's employ till 1864, when he came to Burlington, Iowa.

Sept. 24, 1844, he was married in Jonestown, Pa., to Miss Lucy Ann Freylingheusen. Mrs. Frantz was born in Jonestown, Pa., Jan. 24, 1827. Her father was born in 1791, and served through the War of 1812, and her grandfather was a warrior in the Revolutionary War. Mr. Freylingheusen was a field physician in Pennsylvania for years. He died Sept. 15, 1854, aged sixty two years. Mrs. Freylingheusen survived her husband some ten years, her death occurring in 1864. They were the parents of seven children, of whom three are now living: Maria married William Woomer, and their son, Ephraim, served through the Civil War, and lost a leg in the great conflict. Mr. Woomer was later United States Senator from Lebanon county, Pa., for two years, and died a few years ago. Peter, who served all through the Civil War, being in the battle of Gettysburg and many other important battles, now lives at an advanced age in Jonestown, Pa. He sang in the Lutheran church in Jonestown for forty-two consecutive years. Sarah married Thomas Miller, of Lancaster county, Pa., who was a drummer boy in the Civil War at the battle of Shiloh. Freylingheusen Miller, known as Freylie, was a drummer boy in one of the Ohio regiments. Mrs. Miller resides in Dayton, Ohio. George Washington Freylingheusen also served all through the Civil War, and died in 1903. Lucy Ann was the wife of our subject. Elizabeth Freylingheusen lives in Lebanon, Pa. Ella married John L. Saylor, the present owner and proprietor of the Allwein carriage factory, in Annville, Pa. Mr. Saylor has served in the Legislature of Pennsylvania.

Mr. and Mrs. Frantz were blessed with nine children: Jennie A. married William A. Kendall, whose sketch appears on another page in this volume; Rebecca is the wife of James Simpson, of Petersburg, Va.; Lucy is the wife of E. D. Morgan, foreman of the freight house of the Rock Island Railroad, with headquarters in Burlington, Iowa; John C. is also connected with the freight department of the Rock Island Railroad, and lives in Burlington: Elizabeth married Andrew Anderson, who died in 1902. Mrs. Anderson conducts a grocery in Burlington, Iowa: Alberta became the wife of Dwight Stevens, and died in Seattle, Wash., Dec. 25, 1892, and is buried in Aspen Grove cemetery, in Burlington, Iowa; Dr. Charles P. Frantz is the youngest child and is a prosperous eye, ear, and throat specialist in Burlington, Iowa.

After coming to Burlington Mr. Frantz entered into partnership with Jedidiah Bennett, opening up a carriage factory on the corner of Third and Columbia Streets. They continued in business over thirty-five years, shipping many carriages and buggies to all parts of the Northwest. Their work was always of the best, and the factory was a great benefit to the town, as they employed many men in the different departments. Mrs. Frantz was a home-loving and a home-making woman, and was greatly beloved by all who knew her. She was a lifelong member of the Lutheran church, as were the most of her large relationship. Mrs. Frantz was called to her final rest Dec. 18, 1890. Mr. Frantz survived his wife about four years, his death occurring Jan. 14, 1894.

Mr. Frantz was always a stanch Democrat, and was postmaster in Annville, Pa., for four years, during Buchanan's administration. He was a quiet, conscientious man, who made duty before pleasure his aim in life. He early established a high grade of principles upon which to shape his business career, and though many times he had much to endure, still he was never even tempted to swerve from the straight and narrow course. His affection for his family and home was strong, and his friendships were deep and lasting.

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