"Going to the roots of the Frank Family"
April 21, 2024




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Memories of Seth Clinton Frank
Written by his son, Brent L. Frank
April 1966

A few things I remember about how my father, Seth C. Frank, made a living to support his family and his association with his family.

Father always had two jobs at one time as best I can remember. I don't know for sure what sequence his wage earning jobs were in, but I will list them as best I can remember them. Dad was farming his mother's small piece of land near River Heights (approx 13 acres I believe), milking cows and working a second job. He worked at the Ogden Iron Works as a welder. After the welding job, he worked at the sugar factory at Lewiston as a mechanic. I distinctly remember that on occasions, usually about once every couple of weeks, he would bring home sugar "sugar candy" for us kids.

Sometime in the early 1940's, Dad bought a truck and started hauling milk to the plant at Wellsville, Utah. The milk would be picked up on individual farms in 10 gallon steel milk cans, and it took a good share of the day to complete the milk route. Each farm had a number, and the number was painted on each milk can. The number was used to identify the farm, pay for the milk content as delivered to the factory, and returned to the farm each day after being processed at the factory. The truck bed would hold 108 milk cans on the bottom, and sometimes cans were placed on a second level above the bottom cans in order to get them all on the truck. The truck bed was not enclosed, just an open bed. Dad used to take me with him on the milk route at least once or twice a week when I was not in school. I remember going enough times that I learned the route, can numbers, and the quantity of cans at each farm for every one on the route before I was 8 years old. Occasionally, if Dad was ill or something, I went with a substitute driver to tell him where to go and to advise him which can number went with each farm upon the return delivery.

Dad always liked to hunt, fish, and spend time in the mountains. I remember how he used to take the family up in the canyon for a few days camp out. He would commute from the camp to our home, milk the cows, haul his milk route, and then return to the canyon for some fishing. In the evening, he would return home and do the night milking and return to the camp to spend the night. I think it was quite obvious from these camp outs how much he loved to play with the kids when one considers the inconvenience and extra work he would go through to take us camping. Mother stayed at the camp with us during his absence.

Dad always wanted to have a job where he could not only make a living, but where he could be his own boss. During the middle 1940's, Dad tried his best to acquire enough financial backing to purchase a large enough farm that he could make a comfortable living staying at home. He never could get enough money to buy what he wanted (a large farm in the Twin Falls, Idaho area). In 1948, Dad purchased an 87 acre farm at Mendon, Utah. This is the first home and property that Dad ever owned. Finances just never worked out, and he had to continue a full time job on outside employment. Dad worked as a carpenter for Anderson Lumber Company. He also worked as a carpenter on various building construction projects, such as Bear River High School. He also worked as a cement finisher during the time he had the farm at Mendon. Much of the farm work was done in the evenings and weekends. Brent, at 12 years, irrigated most of the farm in the day, and Dad did it at night. All irrigation was flood irrigation. A good deal of the sugar beet work was done by the older children with Mother as co-worker and supervisor. Brent learned to operate all of the equipment from plowing, planting, cultivating sugar beets, combining grain to operating the truck. We also had a dairy herd to milk, pasture, feed, etc.

If owning this farm never did anything for Dad's ego and sense of accomplishment, it did do two very important things for the family itself. Namely, it made the older children learn how to work, and the value of money. Also during this time, our parents were able to save enough money, due to having to make payments on the farm, that upon selling the farm in 1957, Dad was able to build a nice home for his family in Providence, Utah. The home is a beautiful structure and is quite a monument for Dad to leave behind.

Although I don't remember the year, it was 1955 or 1956 when Dad acquired a contractor's license and started contracting small construction projects. He started doing concrete work, mostly curb and gutter, sidewalks and the like. He also built several residential houses in Logan. Although Dad never got rich doing this work, he was able to buy a few of the many things in life that he could and did enjoy.

During the past three years, 1963, 1964, and 1965, while I was living in Rigby, Idaho, Dad and Mother came up on several occasions and stayed with my family. While Mother stayed with my wife and family, Dad and I went fishing. Although Dad never caught a salmon, we did go salmon fishing a couple of times, and he did get to see some of the beauty on the Salmon River in Idaho.

Perhaps the best remembered recent outing was last fall (fall of 1965). Dad and my brother Louis brought Dad's jeep from Utah, and we went elk hunting north of Kilgore, Idaho. Although Dad never did any hunting, we sure had a lot of fun. Dad would get up and cook breakfast for us, then he would take us back into the mountains with his jeep. Once we were at the location where we planned to hunt, Dad would return to camp where he would wash the dishes, gather and cut firewood, etc. and relax around camp until we returned. Dad cooked every meal, washed every dish, and did all the camp chores. He just seemed to be happy and content to be in the mountains with his two sons and away from all the people and problems of life.

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