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 Franklin Frank Garvin

Franklin "Frank" Garvin

Hazelton, Barber County, Kansas, USA
Death 27 Dec 1988 (aged 86)
Huntington Beach, Orange County, California, USA
Burial Westminster, Orange County, California, USA
Plot Garden of Olives, Section 16B
Memorial ID 64634892 · View Source
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My father, Frank Garvin, came from an once-authentic culture that is now seen mainly in films and television.

Franklin "Frank" Garvin (1902-1988) was a son of Annie Bell Ham Garvin (1861-1955) and William Wallace Garvin (1845-1910). He was born December 24, 1902 in Hazelton, Barber County, Kansas, USA. The family was attending a Christmas Eve pageant at the church where they worshiped. Frank's full-term pregnant mother, Annie Bell, played Mary in the Nativity scene. Annie Bell went into labor and had to leave the Nativity scene! Frank was born that night!

Frank married Frances Margaret Barnes (1907-1967) on March 17, 1930 in Maywood, Los Angeles County, California, USA. It was St. Patrick's Day and Frances' birthday. They met when Frances went into the bakery owned and operated by Frank and his sister Flora "Flo" Garvin (1890-1974). Flo told Frank, "That's the girl you're going to marry."

Frank was very intelligent and, as he said, "was ahead of the teachers." This sometimes made problems for him for, as he said, "The teachers were mostly a chapter ahead of the students!" He had to leave school early in order to work. (Frank would have done brilliantly in college if he had been given the opportunity to attend.)

He had many skills, including carpentering and plumbing, firearm expertise, gardening, lassoing and rope tricks, panning for gold and for silver, flying Jenny planes, and blowing smoke rings. Frank loved to tap-dance. He had taken lessons from a teacher to Hollywood stars, and was proud of the time that he and his tap-dancing class attended a Movie Premiere. He enjoyed singing, including songs of the "Gay '90's" (to which he tap-danced), "I'm Forever Blowing Bubbles," "Pony Boy, Pony Boy, Won't You Be My Pony Boy," [he'd substitute 'girl" for the 'boy'] and "Look For the Silver Lining." His favorite song to have played for him on the piano was, "Twilight Time."

He often recited poems to me. One of our favorites was the Mother Goose rhyme, "The North Wind Doth Blow":
The north wind doth blow,
And we shall have snow,
And what will poor robin do then?
Poor thing.
He'll sit in a barn,
And keep himself warm,
And hide his head under his wing,
Poor thing.

During the Depression, he panned for gold and for silver, and worked for the WPA. For years he worked at Frank Curren's Lumber Yard, and knew names of all the woods and the distinctions among them. After the lumber yard he worked many years for the City of Huntington Beach. He had been a professional baker, and enjoyed making parkerhouse rolls. He made the best scrambled eggs, bacon, hamburgers and hamburger relish ever.

He was friends with Mr. Speers, whose home was a museum devoted to the Old West (which Dad and Mr. Speers loved), and to rock collecting. Dad would often take me--his daughter--(Cherie J.) to Mr. Speers home, located in "Five Points" between Huntington Beach and Westminster, California. I both the Old West and rock collecting. This museum was later moved to Ghost Town in Knott's Berry Farm.
What wonderful hours Dad and I spent rock collecting. And he enthralled me with the "black light" under which certain rocks would glow!

Back in that time in our small town, some people couldn't read or write. Dad was literate, and often people came to our house so Dad could read letters and documents for them. He would also often write letters for them, as well as witness their "X" mark and write their signatures. He never took money for this. They would bring token gifts such as fresh eggs, baked goods, and produce from their gardens.

Frank passed away on December 27, 1988 at a local hospital after a brief illness.

Dad was a living embodiment of many values, interests and activities that are now kept "alive" through old photographs and films, and in story books, as well as in museums.

He was the real deal.

Family Members



In Loving Memory
Frank Garvin

  • Maintained by: Cherie J.
  • Originally Created by: macso
  • Added: 24 Jan 2011
  • Find A Grave Memorial 64634892
  • Cherie J.
  • Find A Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for Franklin "Frank" Garvin (24 Dec 1902–27 Dec 1988), Find A Grave Memorial no. 64634892, citing Westminster Memorial Park, Westminster, Orange County, California, USA ; Maintained by Cherie J. (contributor 47466377) .