Biography of Frank B. Romer
Mercer County, Ohio Biographies

FRANK BERNARD ROMER, the owner of an excellent farm of 80 acres in section 26, Granville township, which is watered by the Wabash River, is one of the representative men of his locality and belongs to one of the oldest and most prominent families of the county. He was born December 6, 1874, at St. Henry, Mercer County, Ohio, and is a son of Bernard Frank and Mary Anna (Beckman) Romer.

Bernard Frank Romer, Sr., the grandfather of our subject, accompanied his brother Henry from Germany and the latter entered the land and laid out the town of St. Henry. The great grandfather had died in Germany, but our subject's great grandmother and the following children made up the first party of settlers of this name: Henry, Bernard Frank (the grandfather of our subject), Herman (I), Herman (2), Fred, Agnes (wife of Henry Hemmelgarn, deceased, at Cincinnati), and Frank. Three of the sons came to the vicinity of St. Henry, but the rest of the family remained at Cincinnati. The mother subsequently came to Minster, Auglaize County, Ohio, to visit her children, and died there in 1849. Other members of the family joined the first settlers at St. Henry. They possessed little means and walked the most of the way through the woods to this point. They worked on the canal and proved industrious, reliable people. Their log cabin in the woods was erected by combined effort in one day, and in the hastily constructed home seven families spent their first winter. All the brothers died in Mercer County, except Frank, Fred and Herman.

Bernard Frank Romer, Sr., was married at Cincinnati, Ohio, to Agnes Gravenkamp, who came from the same part of Germany as did his own family. Their children were: Elizabeth, the first white child born at St. Henry, who is the widow of Fred Athmer; Agnes, who married Clemmens Meinerding, both now deceased; Bernardina, who married Henry Lennartz, hoth now deceased; Catherine, who married John Beckman; Mary (widow of Dr. Myers), residing in Florida; Anna, (widow of Henry Doess), living at St. Henry; and Bernard Frank, the only son. The father of this family died in September, 1879, but the mother survived until February 14, 1901.

Bernard Frank Romer, father of our subject, one of the best known citizens of St. Henry, was born here on February 25, 1846. The whole period of his attendance at school was covered by 30 days, but he made the most of his limited opportunities. He early developed business ability and was but 12 years of age when he began to buy and sell as well as trade horses, and it was remarkable how seldom he made a bad bargain. When he was 14 years old he bought his first farm, purchasing it from Jacob Kellerman, at St. Peter, in Recovery township, and with this tract as a beginning he has continued to add acre after acre until he now owns 400 acres in Mercer County and a large body of land in Scioto County. In addition he is interested in the lumber business at Celina, St. Henry and Mendon, and is the controller of a large amount of capital. Politically he has always been a stanch supporter of the Democratic party, but he has never sought office. Mr. Romer is one of the leading members of St. Henry's Catholic Church at St. Henry, which his family was instrumental in founding. He assisted in building the present beautiful church edifice.

On October 15, 1868, Mr. Romer was married to Mary Anna Beckman, who died March 18, 1902. She was a daughter of the late Henry A. Beckman, who was an early settler in this vicinity, a well known practitioner of law and for a number of years a justice of the peace. The eight children born to Bernard Frank Romer, Jr., and wife were as follows; Rebecca Ann, who is the wife of Henry Winkeljohan, of Celina; Agnes, who is the wife of Benjamin Riling, of St. Henry; Emma, who married Joseph Moeller and lives at St. Henry; Frank Bernard, who is the immediate subject of this sketch; Ferdinand, who married Carrie Kreusch and lives at Cambridge City, Indiana; Albert, who married Mary Schunth and lives at Celina; Lillian, a very estimable lady, who keeps house for her father; and a son, who died January 7, 1879, aged six months.

Frank Bernard Romer, Jr., laid out the town of Burkettsville, 1871. He also presented to Rev. John Van den Broek, C. PP. S., two acres of land and was one of a committee of eight good Catholics who organized St. Bernard's Church there. He erected his own commodious residence at St. Henry in 1884-85, a large brick structure of 12 rooms, where he now lives practically retired, although it is doubtful if anyone with so active a mind and so many important interests still concerning him will ever entirely lay aside business affairs.

Frank Bernard Romer was reared at St. Henry. He enjoyed better educational advantages than did his father, for after he had completed the course of instruction in the schools of St. Henry, he went to Dayton and finished at St. Mary's Institute there. He continued to reside at home until his marriage and during the first year following it he lived at St. Henry, in the meantime working one of his father's farms. In 1899 he located on his present farm, which he obtained from his father, and moved into the log house which was then standing. Mr. and Mrs. Romer continued to live in that house until the completion, in 1902, of his handsome new residence, of nine rooms, which is a very fine home and is fitted with many modern conveniences. In 1901 Mr. Romer completed his substantial barn, also of modern construction. He has made many other excellent improvements, has cleared his land and has put it under a fine state of cultivation. He carries on general farming, after the most approved methods, raises some stock and in every way may be termed a representative agriculturist of his section.

On October 4, 1898, Mr. Romer was united in marriage with Anna M. Moeller, who was born November 23, 1875, and is a daughter of Gerhard Henry and Mary (Lang) Moeller. The father of Mrs. Romer was born at St. Johns, near Maria Stein, and was a son of Joseph Moeller, who was one of the first settlers at that place. Joseph Moeller and wife came to Ohio from Germany and they had the following children: Gerhard Henry, father of Mrs. Romer; Anthony, who died young; Anna, who married Joseph Bruns; John, deceased at 21 years; Mary, wife of Frank Bruns; Frances, who married (first) Frank Feidhake and (second) Anthony Sherman; and Joseph.

The children of Gerhard Henry and Mary (Lang) Moeller were: Amelia, who married William Henry Romer; Joseph, who married Emma Romer; Anna M., who is the wife of our subject; Louis, who married Rose Vand der Bosch; Pauline, deceased in the spring of 1905, who was the wife of George Bruns; Rose, who married Joseph Macke, Jr.; Francis; Leo; Adolph, deceased; and Ferdinand. Mr. and Mrs. Moeller live retired at St. Henry.

Mr. and Mrs. Romer have four children, namely: Florence, born August 21, 1899; Alphonse, born December 19, 1901; Ruth, born March 12, 1904; and Mildred, born September 6, 1906. This family, like all of the name, are devoted members of the Catholic Church.

History of Mercer County, Ohio
and Representative Citizens
Edited & Compiled by: Hon. S. S. Scranton
Published by: Biographical Publishing Company
Chicago, Illinois

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