|Birth: ||Sep. 27, 1856|
St. Joseph County
|Death: ||Jul. 8, 1940|
B. Franklin Eberhard, son of Barbara (Smith)Winchell and John David Eberhard of Colon, St. Joseph County, MI, married Matilda Smith, daughter of Susan (Eberhard) and Jacob Smith, December 25, 1881, in Michigan. Frank and Matilda were second cousins.
Frank Eberhard owned and operated the general store in Jones, Cass County, Michigan, for more than a half century. Kenneth M. Poe, who was born and raised in Newberg Township and later became a County Clerk of Cass County, Michigan, wrote his recollections of Jones, Michigan, in the 1920's and 1930's. In these recollections he wrote the following about Frank Eberhard and his store in Jones:
"On the west side of the street starting from the north was Frank Eberhart's dry good store. This was a brick building which must have been a master piece at the time it was built. Mr. Eberhart wore a stiff celluloid collar and draped his bald head with some long hair from the back of his head. His assistant was Mrs. Daisy Hauser and I remember that they sold mainly groceries, yard goods, clothing, boots, shoes, medicines, etc. Out in front of the store was a long pipe hitching rail as was in front of most of the stores. On the second floor of the store was a hall which was used by the community."
The following newspaper clipping was saved by another Newberg Township residest, Katie Eberhard:
GENERAL STORE OPERATED IN JONES FOR OVER HALF CENTURY BY ONE MAN (picture of Frank Eberhard) by Charles A. Weissert, Gazette Staff Writer, (estimated date: 1938)
JONES.-To be engaged in business 53 years and to be still actively interested in that business at the age of 83, is a record few merchants of Southwestern Michigan have attained. But, such is the record of Frank Eberhard, who came here in the fall of 1884 and later opened a general merchandise and grocery store.
"I like the store," said Mr. Eberhard, "if I gave it up there would be nothing else to do."
When he started in business, roads were undeveloped and a trip to store or market with horse-drawn vehicles sometimes required a day, especially if Three Rivers, then a principal trading point, was the objective. By automobile over a modern cement highway, the trip may be made today in a few minutes.
"The farmers usually took along feed for their horses when they made these long trips," Eberhard said. "In those days the farmer brought to the store butter and eggs, which were taken in trade. Now, all is changed. Today, little butter is made on the farm. The creamery truck calls for the milk and a buyer collects the eggs. The store-keeper now handles the staples-or the necessities for the community."
Mr. Eberhard recalls that at one time there were three blacksmith shops in Jones. "The town was just about the same size then, but considerable business was done, for it was a good trading center. We at one time employed four clerks. The train service was good and there was no delay in getting freight."
"Those were the days of horses and work," he observed. "Now we have wheels and mortgages."
In his store is preserved the hospitality of the pioneer merchant, who had time to inquire about the welfare of his customers, and who had time to talk a few minutes after purchases were made. A big stove, near which are several chairs, spreads a welcoming warmth and along the counters are stools for the convenience of patrons.
One of Mr. Eberhard's prized possessions is a century-old clock for which his father, a pioneer of St. Joseph County, paid $50.00. The clock is on the wall, next to a front window. Antique hunters make a rush for it-but it is still there.
The son of John D. Eberhard, pioneer from Pennsylvania, Mr. Eberhard was born Sept. 27, 1856, on a farm in Colon township north of Burr Oak. His wife, the former Matilda Smith, was born Aug. 6, 1860. They were married December 25, 1881.
John David Eberhard (1802 - 1866)
Sarah Smith Winchell Eberhard (1820 - 1900)
Matilda Smith Eberhard (1860 - 1940)
Infant Daughter Eberhard (1897 - 1897)*
Miara Elizabeth Eberhard Teller (1831 - 1909)**
John B. Winchell (1838 - 1869)**
Calvin Zopher Eberhard (1842 - 1877)*
B. Franklin Eberhard (1856 - 1940)
Eberhard, Frank, 1856-1940.
Created by: Sandra Elizabeth Miller
Record added: Jun 21, 2013
Find A Grave Memorial# 112698789
Mary Hinkle Hardy
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