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Franks, Jacob

FRANKS, JACOB

FRANKS, JACOB (c. 1766–c. 1823), merchant and civic leader in Wisconsin and Michigan. Franks, who was born in England, was a nephew of David Salisbury *Franks. He immigrated to Montreal and in 1792 was sent to Green Bay, Wisconsin, as anagent for a Montreal firm. He soon purchased a large tract of land, opened his own trading post, and became one of the influential residents of the settlement, contributing much toward the development of the area. Franks moved to Mackinac, Michigan, in 1805 or earlier. During the War of 1812 Franks fought on the British side and aided in the capture of Mackinac. In 1815 he was listed as one of the "magistrates, merchants, traders and principal inhabitants of Michilimackinac and St. Josephs." When the British withdrew from Mackinac to Drummond Island, Michigan, in 1815, the Americans destroyed Franks' house at Mackinac. He returned to Montreal, where he became an army purveyor and was also a business associate of Henry Joseph, member of a leading Canadian Jewish family.

bibliography:

I. Katz, The Beth El Story (1955), index; B. Sack, History of the Jews in Canada (1945), index; Wisconsin Historial Collections, 19 (1903–11), 292.

[Irving I. Katz]

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