FRANK B. KEEN. Few citizens are better known or more highly respected in Franklin county than the popular postmaster of Christopher, Frank B. Keen, a man who has demonstrated his efficiency as a public citizen, his ability as a business man and his sterling worth as a citizen. During his incumbency of office he has introduced a number of much-needed reforms, and the general satisfaction which is felt with the manner in which he has handled the affairs of his administration is sufficient evidence of his fitness for the position which he holds. Mr. Keen was born in Union county, Illinois, November 22, 1875, and is a son of James M. and Josepine (Coleman) Keen.
The grandfather of Mr. Keen, V. B. Keen, was born in Tennessee, and came to Illinois with his family about 1869 or 1870. A practicing physician, he became known all over Union county, and followed his profession until he was more than seventy years of age, retiring some time before his death in 1909, when he was seventy-seven years old. On the maternal side Frank B. Keen is descended from A. W. Coleman, also a native of Tennessee and a farmer by occupation, a vocation which he followed both in his native state and in Union county, Illinois, where, at his death, he was regarded as one of the substantial agriculturists
of his community. James M. Keen was born in Tennessee, in 1856, and was still a lad when brought to Illinois by his parents. For a number of years he followed carpentry as an occupation, but in 1905 retired from active pursuits and located in Christopher, where he now resides, as does also Mrs. Keen, who was born in Lick Creek, Union county.
Frank B. Keen was reared on a farm and received his education in the common schools of Union county and later in Franklin county. His first serious occupation in life was that of teaching school, and for ten years he was known as an able educator throughout this part of the state. He was for one year engaged in the livery business at Christopher, but since July, 1909, when he was appointed postmaster, he has followed the business of dealing in real estate, in which he has met with more than ordinary success. The postoffice at Christopher belongs to the third class, and for an office of this division does an immense amount of business, but as the general service of the department has improved, so has Mr. Keen improved and advanced conditions at his station. His natural fitness for the position of postmaster resulted in his appointment, and his genial, courteous manners have made him very popular with all with whom he comes into contact. His popularity extends to the lodges with which he is connected, and he is a general favorite with the members of the Odd Fellows, the Red Men and the Modern Woodmen of America, in the latter of which he has served as consul. Always a stalwart Republican, he has been active in the interests of his party here, and, although he has never sought public preferment, has been elected police magistrate.
On January 23, 1897, Mr. Keen was married to Miss Ethel Rea, daughter of Frank Rea, a successful retired merchant of Christopher, and two children have been born to this union: Thyda and Norma, who are both attending school. Mr. and Mrs. Keen hold membership in the Missionary Baptist church, and are popular in church and social circles.