Franklin Lafayette Anders was born November 10, 1875, at Fort Abraham Lincoln, Dakota Territory. His father, Franklin L. Anders, was born in October 1850 in Ohio, while his mother, Anna McLeod, was born in Scotland in 1846. At the time of his birth, Anders' father was stationed at Fort Abraham Lincoln. Upon the elder Anders' discharge, the family moved to Fargo. His father died in 1891 from wounds suffered in the Civil War, while his mother lived until 1946.
Anders attended public school in Fargo until 1890. Upon the death of his father, Anders supported the family by finding work with the Northern Pacific Railroad. In December 1894, he enlisted in Company B, 1st Regiment of the North Dakota National Guard. He enlisted for a second time and saw combat in the Philippine Insurrection in 1898-99. He was awarded the Medal of Honor for action against the enemy on May 13, 1899 in Luzon. He was discharged in September 1899, and moved to Salt Lake City, Utah, where he spent two years working in the mining industry.
In 1902, Anders enrolled at Ripon College in Ripon, Wisconsin. He graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree in engineering in 1906. While at Ripon, he met Mary Hargrave; the couple was married on June 29, 1910 in Ripon. The couple had two children: Marion and Franklin.
Anders returned to Fargo in 1909, and was named city engineer in 1910. He served in this capacity until 1920. He was called again to active military duty in World War I on September 12, 1918. Serving as a captain of engineers, Anders was assigned to a Quartermaster Corps at Camp Dodge, Iowa. He served there until his discharge on October 21, 1919.
Anders was general manager of the Lucky Strike Coal Company in Zap, North Dakota from 1920-1932. From 1931-1934 he was consulting engineer and secretary of the North Dakota State Capital Commission at Bismarck. Anders also held various positions as the consulting engineer on various projects, including Camp Grafton, Mayville Light and Water Plant, Montana Coal and Schueler Mine Development in Minot.
Anders was a member of numerous fraternal organizations, including the American Society of Engineers, the American Legion, the Masons and the Fargo Commons Club. In 1925, Anders joined the Army and Navy Legion of Valor, an organization reserved for Medal of Honor and Distinguished Service Cross recipients. He served as the national commander for the Legion in 1929.
Frank Anders died on January 23, 1966, in Fargo.
Donation; the original acquisition records are unavailable
The Frank L. Anders Papers have been divided into six series as follows:
Series 1: Personal Correspondence
Series 2: Employment
Series 3: General George A. Custer
Series 4: Photographs
Series 5: Oversize Materials