Richard M. Franks. One of the representative citizens of Philo, Illinois, is Richard M. Franks, who not only is managing important business interests but is also one of the trustworthy public officials of township and village. Mr. Franks was born in Saxony, Germany, February 7, 1868, to which province his people have belonged for generations. His parents were Frederick and Julia (Wiedeman) Franks. They came from Germany to the United States in 1881 and located at Philo in Champaign County, Illinois. There the father died in 1897, the mother passing away at a later date in the city of Dubuque, Iowa. They were the parents of two sons, Richard M. and Otto, the latter of whom died in Germany.
Richard M. Franks was thirteen years old when the family came to Champaign County and his schooldays were about ended. He went to work on a farm and continued to be interested in agricultural pursuits until 1904, in which year he came to Philo village and established a lumber yard here and later a yard also at Sidney, and since then has done a large business in this line. He is also agent for the Ford and Studebaker automobiles. Mr. Franks is a man of unusual business enterprise and in furthering his own business concerns has done well for others in affording employment to a number of men and paying good wages.
Mr. Franks was married December 27, 1895, to Miss Alice M. Trost, and they have become the parents of seven children, as follows: Lyman, who lived but two and one-half years; and Royal M., John Edward, Lyle Harold, Richard Eugene, Frederick Paul and Wayne Trost. Mr. Franks and his family belong to the Lutheran Church.
In politics Mr. Franks has always been a sincere Democrat and at all times loyally supports the party nominees. That he is a man in whom his fellow citizens place implicit confidence may be inferred from the fact that many times he has been elected to important public offices and at the present time is serving as village clerk of Philo and is a member of the village school board and is also assessor of Philo Township.