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Champaign County, Illinois

Biography - John Frankeberger

SOURCE: "History of Champaign County, Illinois with Illustrations," 1878


JOHN FRANKEBERGER (Deceased) - Among the citizens of the county who made settlements at an early date, some were not permitted to live to enjoy the fruits of their labors and to witness the subsequent growth and development of the county, but were cut off in the midst of their usefulness. Such was the case of John Frankeberger, whose death occurred in July, 1863.

H was a native of Pennsylvania, in York county, in which state he was born on the 23d of April, 1817. His father was a farmer, and he was raised on a farm, living in Pennsylvania till he was fifteen years of age. In the year 1832, his father, William FRANKEBERGER, removed from Pennsylvania to Richland county, Ohio, purchased a farm, and died there. Mr. Frankeberger grew up to manhood in Ohio, receiving the benefits of a good ordinary education.

His first visit to Illinois was made in the year 1841. He then came to this state, and spent two years and a half here before returning to Ohio. He went back to Ohio, and about a year afterward was married to Susanna SWISHER, who was born in Adams county, Pennsylvania, on the 23d of January, 1817. Her father, John SWISHER, emigrated to Ohio in the year 1826, reaching Richland county, where he settled on the 26th of October of that year, and lived there till his death, in the year 1854. Mr. and Mrs. Frankeberger's marriage took place in Richland county, Ohio, on the 9th of April, 1844.

For nine years after their marriage they lived in Richland county, Ohio, and then in the year 1853 came to Illinois. After remaining some time at Bloomington, Mr. Frankeberger decided to settle in Champaign county as the best location he could select. He first bought forty acres of land, and settled where his family still resides in Sec. 29 of township 20, range 8, or what is now Hensely township. He was a man of industry and energy; subsequently made additional purchases of land, and was actively engaged in improving and developing it into a fine farm, when his untimely death occurred on the 11th of July, 1863. A team of horses, which he was driving, attached to a reaping machine, ran away, and Mr. Frankeberger was thrown off and received injuries which resulted in his death. This sad misfortune was a heavy blow to his family, and was lamented by a large circle of friends and acquaintances. He was cut off in the prime of life, when he was busy making plans for the future, and when it seemed that his assistance was most necessary in building up a fit home for his family and making extensive improvements on the farm.

During the ten years he had lived in the county he had made many friends, and was highly respected as a good and worthy citizen. His early political opinions attached him to the old Whig party, of which his father, as well as Mr. Frankeberger, was an earnest and devoted member. When the Whig party came to its destruction, and the Republican party arose, he did not hesitate to give his support to that great organization which opposed slavery. Mrs. Frankeberger, after her husband's death, continued to reside on the farm, which she has managed with considerable success and ability. She has built a commodious barn and fine residence, a view of which is shown elsewhere among our illustrations, and has given her children a good education. She has five children: George, who is farming on his own land in Mahomet township, a mile west of his mother's residence; James T., who for some time has been away from home; Amanda C., who married William H. MILLER; Annette; and Hattie J.

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