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Frank S Finkel
Birth: Jan. 29, 1854
Washington County
Ohio, USA
Death: Aug. 28, 1930
Columbia County
Washington, USA

Frank Finkel came to the rolling farmlands of Columbia County, Washington, as a common laborer and found work in the local sawmill. By 1885 he owned his first 21 acres of land. His name shows up as both "Finkel" and "Finkle" on sale contracts, mortgages, loans and family obituaries. He continued to prosper through the years, and in 1886 he married Delila Rainwater, daughter of Jacob Rainwater. Finkel's hard work began to pay off, and in 1898 he was granted 120 acres of land under the Homestead Act of 1862.16

Finkel continued to work hard, and by the summer of 1911 he had accumulated a home, commercial property in town and 820 acres of Dayton farmland. Life was good for Finkel and his family. He was even written up in AN ILLUSTRATED HISTORY OF SOUTHEASTERN WASHINGTON. The story stated, "It is no small thing to enter a wild country and open a farm, and…to be able to handle the property successfully…The subject of this article has so done and is to be classed with the substantial and leading men of the country…Finkel was born in Washington county, Ohio, on January 29, 1854." Finkel died on Aug. 28, 1930 with services held at the Dayton Christian Church.

A Dayton, Washington, farmer, Frank Finkel announced in 1921 that he was the sole survivor of the Custer massacre. The story garnered national attention in a number of newspapers across the nation from Washington State to Alabama. Finkel claimed he made his escape, wounded, through hordes of savages and managed to outrun his pursuers to a nearby cabin where he was nursed back to health by two mystery men.

In 1968 Dr. Charles Kuhlman's book, "The Frank Finkel Story: Possible Custer Survivor?" supported Finkel's claim. The subject of dozens of books, research papers and articles Finkel's story has continued to have its supporters through the years. A number of stories and article have supported the story as well. Finkel claimed he served under the name Frank Hall but the name is found nowhere in connection with the events of June 25, 1876. No evidence exists that supports the story and appears to be nothing more than a tall tale.

Frank & Delila(h) Rainwater Finkle also had another child, Elmer, born 1 Apr 1890. Elmer married Bertha c. 1920 in WA (presumably Columbia County). They had 3 children. Elmer died 25 Jun 1986 in Portland, Multnomah County, OR.

Family links: 
  Peter Finkel (1801 - 1868)
  Maglenna Ellen Wendel Finkel (1827 - 1886)
  Hermie C Sperry Billmeyer (1864 - 1951)
  Delilah Ann Rainwater Finkel (1868 - 1921)*
  Ben Finkel (1887 - 1974)*
  Elmer Finkel (1890 - 1986)*
  Clarance Finkel (1893 - 1894)*
  Theresia Lucille Finkel Koch (1900 - 1982)*
  Frank W Finkel (1905 - 1912)*
  John Finkel (____ - 1884)*
  Frank S Finkel (1854 - 1930)
  Joseph Edwin Finkel (1861 - 1946)*
*Calculated relationship
Dayton City Cemetery
Columbia County
Washington, USA
Maintained by: CryptoGram
Originally Created by: Michael L. Nunnally
Record added: Mar 28, 2008
Find A Grave Memorial# 25589509
Frank S Finkel
Added by: Suzy E.
Frank S Finkel
Added by: geraldine laughery perry
Frank S Finkel
Added by: Scott Hawley
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 Added: Nov. 16, 2015

- Vernon Justice Jr.
 Added: Aug. 16, 2015
The lone survivor of Custer's battle of the Little Bighorn. Rest in peace.
- Mary
 Added: May. 7, 2015
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