For Immediate Release:
April 9, 2008
Sen. Patrick Anderson, Artist Timothy Tyler and Senate
Art Fund President Charles Ford along with descendents of Frank
Frantz pose with the painting following its unveiling at the State
On Left: Tulsa residents Timmie Hanna (granddaughter to Frank
Frantz), Mark Cortner (Great Grandson), Suzy Davis (granddaughter)
and Sen. Patrick Anderson. On Right: Doug Frantz, Enid, and Douglas
Frantz Collins, artist Timothy Tyler and Senate Art Fund President
Senate Dedicates Painting of American Rough
Rider and Territorial Governor Frank Frantz
Another historic painting will soon grace the walls of the State
Capitol following a dedication in the Senate Chamber Wednesday.
The piece of art, by Timothy Tyler, depicts American Rough Rider
and Territorial Governor Frank Frantz fighting in the bloodiest
and most famous battle of the Spanish-American War, the Battle of
San Juan Hill.
"This painting portrays one of Oklahoma's greatest pioneers,"
said Sen. Anderson, R-Enid, who sponsored the painting on behalf
of the citizens of Enid. "He was not only a leader on the battlefield,
but also one of Oklahoma's greatest political leaders making several
beneficial contributions to the state's future. His life is an important
part of our state's as well as our country's history and the people
of Enid are pleased to honor him here today.”
Born and raised in Illinois, Frantz and his brothers moved to Medford
in Oklahoma Territory following the opening of the Cherokee Strip
in September 1893. When the Spanish-American War began in 1898 Frantz
enlisted in the 1st United States Volunteer Cavalry, which the American
press referred to as the Rough Riders. He was assigned to A Company
and given the rank of First Lieutenant before traveling to Cuba
to fight in the first battle between the American and Spanish forces,
the Battle of Las Guasimas.
During this time, Lt. Colonel Theodore Roosevelt was promoted to
Colonel and given command of the Rough Riders and the Battle of
San Juan Hill took place the next day.
Frantz's skill during the battle would forever gain him Roosevelt's
friendship and trust. During one battle, the commanding officer
of his company was killed and Frantz immediately took over and led
the company to a successful charge. In recognition for his service,
Roosevelt promoted Frantz to the rank of Captain and commander of
A Company of the Rough Riders.
Frantz settled in Enid after the war where he opened a hardware
and lumber business, married Matilda Evan and raised five children.
Roosevelt was soon elected Vice President under President William
McKinley, but quickly succeeded to the Presidency following McKinley's
death in 1901.
The President wasted no time helping his dear friend Frantz and
at the end of that same year, Roosevelt named him as postmaster
of Enid where he served for two years. Roosevelt then appointed
him Indian Agent for the Osage Agency at Pawhuska and later elevated
him to the governorship of the Oklahoma Territory. Frantz assumed
office on January 5 and was inaugurated on January 16, 1906, being
the seventh and youngest governor to serve in the territory's history.
"Frank Franz not only played a role in early American history,
but helped shape Oklahoma's early history through his many beneficial
contributions while serving as the last Governor of the Oklahoma
Territory," said Charles Ford, President of the Oklahoma State
Senate Historical Preservation Fund. “Mr. Tyler did a magnificent
job in capturing this special moment in history. You can almost
hear the flag whipping in the wind and the calls of battle from
the men. It’s a beautiful piece that will make a great addition
to the Capitol’s collection of historic artwork.”
Among his many contributions to state government, Frantz’s
administration began obtaining the remaining amount of land in No
Man’s Land, now the Oklahoma panhandle, after Congress passed
the Enabling Act in 1906.
After losing the election in 1907, Frantz spent the remainder of
his life working in the oil royalty and other businesses before
passing away in 1941.
Tyler, a native Oklahoman, said he was thrilled for the opportunity
to paint such a historical scene.
“It was an honor to be asked to participate in the Senate’s
art program,” said Tyler. “Frantz played a special role
in the state’s history and I was proud to portray him in this
special event in our country’s history.”
For more information contact:
Pam Hodges: (405) 521-5675