Biography - FRANK J. BLISS, D. V. S.
For more than a score of years Dr. Frank J. Bliss has been successfully engaged in practice as a veterinary surgeon, and since 1872 has been a resident of Earlville, LaSalle county, where he is well and favorably known. He possesses an excellent education and is thoroughly experienced in his chosen field of labor.
John Bliss, the paternal grandfather of the Doctor, was a farmer and noted for the fine horses which he raised. He was in the service during the second war with England, and died at Royalton, Vermont, when over ninety years of age. He was the father of twelve children, to each of whom he gave good advantages for that period. His father, John Bliss, Sr., was a native of England, and was a pioneer farmer in Vermont. During the struggle of the colonies with the mother country he joined the army of Washington, and aided in establishing the independence of the United States. He married Rebecca Hutchinson and lived to extreme old age, dying when in his ninetyninth year. He was the father of seventeen sons and daughters, and from him are descended many bearing the name of Bliss. The maternal grandfather of our subject, David Nichols, married Abigail Winslow, of the celebrated family who were passengers on the Mayflower, and eleven children were born of their union. David Nichols was a soldier in the war of 1812, and his brother William was an aide on the staff of General Gates at the time of Burgoyne's surrender. By occupation David Nichols was a farmer, and at the time of his death he had reached the venerable age of ninety-one years, while his wife was in her eighty-ninth year when she was called to the silent land. His father, Abraham Nichols, also lived to extreme old age, dying when almost a centenarian. His home was in Rehoboth, Rhode Island, and his numerous sons and daughters and their posterity went to various localities in this country. A worthy example was set by him as a patriot and citizen, and his loyal services in the war of the Revolution are gratefully remembered.
The parents of the Doctor were Carlton P. and Maria (Nichols) Bliss, both natives of Vermont. The father, a gentleman of superior education and attainments, was a graduate of the Middlebury (Vermont) College, and was an expert civil engineer. In his early manhood he went to the south and for a number of years divided his time between Savannah, Georgia; St. Augustine, Florida, and a place called Double Branches, in Georgia, his winters being passed at the two first mentioned points. Later he was in the employ of the government as a superintendent of harbor and drainage construction and improvements. His last years were passed in his native state, where he carried on a farm in the vicinity of Randolph, Orange county. There he died, in 1883. when in his seventy-ninth year, and his devoted wife did not long survive him, as she was laid to rest in the quiet cemetery within a month after his death, she being sixty-three years of age. Both were consistent members of the Congregational church, and for many years he acted in the office of deacon. In his home township he was called upon to hold nearly all of the local offices, and for a score of years he was a selectman, transacting- the general business of the district. For a period he occupied the chair of mathematics in Dartmouth College, and the cause of education was ever dear to his heart. Thus it may be seen that he was a leader both by nature and training, a power for good in his community. To himself and wife three children were born, Frank J. being the only son. Mary J. is the widow of Mason J. Rowland, and is now a resident of Box Butte, Nebraska, as is also the younger sister, Emma Adelia, wife of Henry Gilberts.
The birth of Dr. F. J. Bliss occurred in Savannah, Georgia, October 1, 1852, and until his tenth year he lived in the south. His elementary education was obtained of a private tutor, an old Presbyterian minister, and after he returned with his parents to New England he received excellent training in the public schools, and in 1874 was graduated in the Vermont State University. Desiring to enter the medical profession, the young man then pursued a course of study in the Burlington Medical College, and afterward attended a series of lectures in the old New York Veterinary' College. Being convinced that the west is a better field for a young practitioner, he located in Milwaukee, where for two years he was engaged in veterinary work. In 1872 he removed to Earlville, where he soon built up an excellent practice, and has remained. He belongs to the State Veterinary Society of Illinois, and keeps thoroughly abreast of all progress in his particular line of work. He has made good investments in real estate, and at the present time is the owner of an entire block of Earlville property and three paying farms, one in Nebraska, one in Missouri, and one in Kansas, aggregating seven hundred and sixty acres. Politically he is a Republican, and fraternally an Odd Fellow.
The marriage of Dr. Bliss and Miss Isabel Rubdew was celebrated June 28, 1876. She is a daughter of Alexander and Julia (Pelca) Rubdew, who were early settlers of Earl township, LaSalle county, coming here from their former home in Vermont. The Doctor and wife have one child, named Gertrude Frances.
Extracted by Norma Hass from Biographical and Genealogical Record of LaSalle County, Illinois published in 1900, volume 1, pages 390-392.