KELLY, FRANK JOSEPH. - Springfield is not only the capital of the State, but a distributing center for a wide contiguous territory that looks to it as a source of supply. The railroad facilities are such that transportation is good and other conditions are ideal for its prominence as a manufacturing and industrial center. These facts are being recognized by the practical men of the State, many of whom are locating here and developing large concerns. One of the live, representative business men of the city is Frank Joseph Kelly, who has made Springfield his home since 1895, and to whose influence and business tact and ability, much of the present prosperity of D. A. Stuart & Co., is due.
Mr. Kelly was born in Cleveland, Ohio, February 13, 1866, a son of Keran and Ellen (Brennan) Kelly, natives of Ireland. Mr. Kelly learned the trade of merchant tailoring in his native land, and when he came to the United States in 1847, he located in Cleveland, Ohio, and for some years engaged in its prosecution. Later, however, he embarked in a dray and transfer business, continuing it until his death, which occurred November 6, 1891. His widow survives, making her home in Cleveland, Ohio. She and her husband had ten children, four of whom survive, Mr. Kelly of this record being the only living son. The father of these children was a Democrat in political views and all his life was a consistent Catholic, and brought up his family in that faith.
Frank Joseph Kelly attended St. Patrick's parish school in Cleveland, leaving when fourteen years of age. He began working at that time in the brass foundry of J. V. Kennedy, remaining with him from November 7, 1880, to 1892, remained there until March 31, 1895, when he came to Springfield, to engage as traveling man for D. A. Stuart & Co., dealers in oils, and made himself so valuable, that soon thereafter, he was offered a partnership, and is now a member of the firm. This well know house in its line of business covers a large territory throughout the Middle West, where the quality of the produce commands large sales.
While Mr. Kelley's sympathies are with the principles of the Democratic party, in local affairs he believes in voting for the man and measure calculated to prove of the most benefit to the people at large. He has never cared for office, preferring to exert his influence as a private citizen, and in that capacity he has always been a strong advocate of local improvements and good government. Fraternally he belongs to the Knights of Columbus, the Catholic Mutual Benefit Association and the Loyal Americans, being collector for the Catholic Mutual Benefit Association. He is a good Catholic, being a consistent member of the Church of the Immaculate Conception.
On June 14, 1893, Mr. Kelly was married in Cleveland, Ohio, to Mary Frances Lynch, daughter of Matt and Maggie (Walsh) Lynch, natives of Ireland and Cleveland, respectively. Mr. Lynch was an engineer on the Big Four Railroad, and his engine pulled the Lincoln funeral car. The death of this good man occurred July 9, 1898, but his widow survives and makes her home in Cleveland. Mr. Lynch was also a Democrat and Catholic. There were nine children in the Lynch family, of whom Mrs. Kelly was the second in order of birth. Mr. and Mrs. Kelly have an interesting family as follows: Frances Stuart, born January 6, 1896; Margaret Mary, born April 29, 1898, and John Matthew, born February 23, 1900. These children are all attending the Stewart School, and are bright, lively young people, the pride of their parents' hearts.
Mr. Kelly started out to make his own living at a tender age, but has not suffered from the hard knocks he was forced to take early in his career. He and his wife are very prominent socially, and their pleasant home is often the scene of a merry gathering, for their many friends enjoy the hospitality of this couple whenever occasion offers.