Frank Henry Foster, a prominent lawyer of the Topeka bar, was born on a farm near Walpole, N. H., Jan. 6, 1857, son of Henry Thomas Foster, a farmer, and his wife, whose maiden name was Hannah Morrill Fuller. On both the paternal and maternal sides Mr. Foster is a descendant of old patriot New England families, members of his paternal ancestry having been represented in the Revolution, and among them was his great-great-grandfather, Jacob Foster, who was a chaplain in the Continental army and was a classmate, at Harvard College, of John Hancock, one of the signers of the Declaration of Independence. The original ancestor of the Foster family in this country was Reginald Foster, who emigrated from the North of England to America in 1638, and first located on Hog Island, off the coast of Massachusetts. Many of his descendants took part in the struggle for American independence. The chain of descent from Reginald Foster down to Frank Henry Foster is as follows: Reginald Foster, Isaac Foster, Sr., Isaac Foster, Jr., Jacob Foster, Henry Foster, Henry P. Foster, Henry T. Foster and Frank Henry Foster. In England the family belonged to the nobility and possessed a coat-of-arms. Hannah Morrill Fuller, mother of Mr. Foster, was a direct descendant of one of the immigrants who came over in the "Mayflower," in 1620, and landed on Plymouth Rock.
Frank Henry Foster was reared to manhood on the New England farm on which he was born. This farm, which was purchased by his grandfather, in 1824, is still in the possession of the family, being now owned by Willis C. Foster, a younger brother of Frank H. Mr. Foster walked three and a half miles to the village school at Walpole, where he obtained his common school and high school education, his determination to secure a good education being undaunted by the long distance he had to walk. In fact, a determination to accomplish whatever he undertakes has been a predominant quality of his whole life, and this quality always brings success, as it has to him. He subsequently attended Kimball Union Academy, at Meriden, N. H., a year and a half, but before entering this academy he had, before he was seventeen years of age, taught a district school in Dublin, N. H., in order to secure the means to continue his education. He was graduated in this academy, June 19, 1877, and upon leaving there taught school two years and in the meantime studied law. He then entered the law office of Davenport & Eddy, at Brattleboro, Vt., where he pursued his legal studies for two and a half years. He then entered the law department of the University of Michigan, at Ann Arbor, matriculating in the junior class, but in the spring of 1882, three weeks before graduation, he was transferred to the senior class, and was graduated with that class in March of that year, with the degree of Bachelor of Laws. He at once came to Topeka, Kan., and has there been actively engaged in the practice of his profession since that time. There are but few members of the Topeka bar who have been engaged in continuous practice there longer than Mr. Foster. As a lawyer he is enterprising, able and upright, a careful and conscientious counselor and advisor, a strong advocate, and an honor to the profession. He is a Republican in his political views, but aside from the chairmanship of the Metropolitan police board, to which office he was appointed without any solicitation upon his part, he has held no public office. He was one of the seven original founders and members of the First Unitarian Church of Topeka, founded in 1885, and has served on its board of trustees continuously since that time. He was also one of the founders of the Saturday Night Club, and is its only member who has belonged to it continuously since its organization. He is a member of the Shawnee County Bar Association, the Kansas State Bar Association, and the Independent Order of Odd Fellows. He is attorney and vice-president of the Chicago Lumber Company, having been its attorney since 1883, and its vice-president since its incorporation. He is also a member of the Sons of the American Revolution.
On June 3, 1884, Mr. Foster was united in marriage with Miss Harriet Bottsford Franks, a native of Lorain county, Ohio, born March 16, 1861, of English descent on the paternal side, and Pennsylvania Dutch ancestry on the maternal side. Mrs. Foster is a skilled musician, being one of the most accomplished violinists and vocalists in Topeka. She gives her musical talent and services entirely free whenever sought, and is a valued member of the social circles of Topeka.Pages 793-795 from volume III, part 2 of Kansas: a cyclopedia of state history, embracing events, institutions, industries, counties, cities, towns, prominent persons, etc. ... / with a supplementary volume devoted to selected personal history and reminiscence. Standard Pub. Co. Chicago : 1912. 3 v. in 4. : front., ill., ports.; 28 cm. Vols. I-II edited by Frank W. Blackmar. Transcribed December 2002 by Carolyn Ward. This volume is identified at the Kansas State Historical Society as microfilm LM195. It is a two-part volume 3.
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