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 Frank B. Roberts

From History of Dakota Territory by George W. Kingsbury, Vol. IV (1915); p. 1206-1209 (SDGENWEB)

Frank B. Roberts, president of the First National Bank of  Milbank, is a leader in financial circles of Grant county. He was born near Sheboygan, Wisconsin, June 24, 1856, a son of Hiram S. and Angeline (Louder) Roberts, and is of Scotch-Welsh ancestry. His paternal grandfather, Shadrach Roberts, was born near Bangor, Maine, and followed the tailor's trade, employing about thirty men in his shop. During the War of 1812 he served in the army as a drummer boy. The maternal grandfather, Benjamin Louden, was a native of Ohio but became an early settler of Wisconsin, where he homesteaded land.

Hiram S. Roberts was born in Bangor, Maine, in 1829, and when a boy went to Wisconsin, whence in early manhood he removed to Blue Earth county, Minnesota. He homesteaded land there and continued to operate his farm until 1880, when he came with his family to South Dakota, taking up a homestead which he later sold. He is now living retired in Spokane, Washington. He is a stalwart democrat although earlier in life he voted the republican ticket, and is much interested in religious work, being an influential member of the Free Methodist church. During the Civil war he was a member of a Minnesota volunteer regiment and was at the front for one year. His wife was born near Cleveland, Ohio, but their marriage occurred in Wisconsin. She passed away in 1911. To them were born ten children, eight of whom survive: Emma, the widow of Willis G. Ackerman, of Milbank; Frank B.; W. H., who is engaged in the real-estate business in Livingston, Montana; Samuel L., who is residing in Spokane, Washington, and is state agent and inspector for the Hartford Insurance Company; Rose, the wife of Henry Rickel, a farmer residing near Big Timber, Montana; H. S., who is engaged in the grain business in Milbank; Grace, the wife of M. G. Standeford, a farmer living in Idaho; and Josie, who married J. A. Corskie, a druggist of Harrison, Idaho.

Frank B. Roberts attended the public schools of Minnesota and subsequently the Mankato Normal School. In his early manhood he followed the teacher's profession and taught in the rural schools for thirty terms. In 1878 he homesteaded land in South Dakota and proved up on it although he continued to devote his time to teaching during the winters. In 1890 he entered financial circles, organizing the Farmers Bank of Milbank, a private institution, which he later sold. He next established the First State Bank, which was opened for business in 1894, and four years later that institution was reincorporated as the First National Bank. In 1914 he purchased the Farmers Bank and consolidated it with the First National Bank, retaining the latter name. As president he occupies a position of influence in the local business and financial world and he has proved an astute and discriminating banker. The institution is capitalized for fifty thousand dollars, the surplus is ten thousand dollars and the average deposits total five hundred and ten thousand dollars. The amount of the deposits proves that the bank has the confidence of the general public and it has been so managed that it not only safeguards the interests of the depositors but also returns to its stockholders a good annual dividend. Mr. Roberts also owns considerable land in Grant county.

In 1880 Mr. Roberts married Miss Edith Ackerman, a daughter of Albert Ackerman, a native of New York, who removed to Ohio in an early day in the history of that state. Later he went to Adams county, Wisconsin, and thence went to Blue Earth county, Minnesota. He passed away near Mapleton, that state.

Mr. Roberts is a democrat and for four years served as county treasurer. He has also served on the city council. The material success which he has gained is proof of his energy and business acumen and the excellent financial condition of the First National Bank is evidence of his executive ability. He is also recognized as a man who conforms his life to high standards and personally he has many sincere friends.

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