FRECK, NEWTON C., lumber merchant, was born at the old homestead at Millersburg, Upper Paxton township, Dauphin county, Pa., November 21, 1841. He is a son of Matthias and Eliza A. (Penrose) Freck. Matthias Freck was born at Baden Baden, Germany, in 1795, and came to America when he was fifteen years of age. He died May 28, 1868. He was very influential in the establishment of the first public school at Millersburg, serving on the committee, which consisted of Jacob Seal, John J. Bowman, Dr. Rathbon, and others. His wife, Eliza A. Penrose, was born August 12, 1804. They had eight children: Joseph; Melvina, wife of John Johnson, deceased, and now widow of Samuel H. Loughabaugh; Rudolph, Roland, Rinaldo, Melancthon Paul, John Luther, and Newton Calvin. Mrs. Freck died January 10, 1892. She was the daughter of Joseph and Euphan (Pratt) Penrose. Joseph Penrose was the son of Col. Joseph Penrose, of Revolutionary fame, who commanded a regiment in that war, and who was a brother-in-law of Gen. Anthony Wayne, by the General’s marriage with his sister.
Newton Calvin Freck received his education in the public schools of Millersburg, which he attended until he was about fifteen. He then began to learn the trade of machinist at Minersville, Schuylkill county, Pa., with William DeHaven, proprietor of the Minersville Machine Works. He had served about two and a half years of his apprenticeship when the business panic of 1857-58 caused the closing of the works. He returned home, attended the Millersburg school for about two years, and then engaged in farming for his brother Roland, Upper Paxton township, and continued there about two years. In 1862 he engaged in manufacturing and dealing in lumber, having formed a partnership with his brother Joseph, under the firm name of N. C. Freck & Co. His brother was an extensive coal dealer at Centralia, Columbia county, Pa. The firm dealt extensively in all kinds of lumber, and established a large and profitable trade in Eastern and Southern markets. The business was continued until 1890.
Mr. Freck was one of the projectors and one of the first directors of the Millersburg Bank, Millersburg, Pa. He was the chief promoter of the State Millers’ Association, called and issued the circulars for the first meeting, which was held at Central Hall, Sunbury, Pa., January 8, 1878. At that meeting he was appointed chairman of the committee which drew up the by-laws by which the association has ever since been governed. Mr. Freck was nominated for president, but declined on account of his being but a young man in the milling business. He was one of the promoters of the Millersburg Water Works, and is at present one of the directors of the works. He is likewise interested in the Millersburg Electric Light Works. He was also among the promoters of water works at Mifflintown, and Patterson, Juniata county; Steelton, Dauphin county; Newport, Perry county, and at Womelsdorf, Berks county. He superintended the construction of the works at all these places. He is the inventor of an ingenious device for filtering the water. He is one of a company of six who are building the water plant at Newville, Pa., now nearly completed. He is ranked among the most sagacious business men, and the most proficient and successful mechanical engineers. Mr. Freck stands equally well in all the relations of life, and his ability and personal worth are universally recognized. In 1876 Mr. Freck was the Republican nominee for assemblyman in the northern district in Dauphin county. He was defeated at the election by three votes, which he claims resulted from the liquor traffic influence being on the side of his opponent, Mr. A. T. Englebert.
Mr. Freck was married, November 28, 1866, to Emma R., daughter of Daniel and Margaret (Rote) Wagner, who was born November 26, 1843. They have had three children: Paul W., born October 7, 1876, died October 8, 1886; Annie M., born September 8, 1867, and Clark C., born January 11, 1870. Mr. Freck and his family are members of the Lutheran church at Millersburg.
Pages 1054 & 1055
Transcribed by Judy Warner Bookwalter, for the Dauphin County,
Pennsylvania Genealogy Transcription Project – http://maley.net/transcription