The Choking of Thomas Frankson

I grew up on a street in St. Paul called Frankson Avenue. It’s between the fairgrounds and the Como Zoo. I didn’t know who this Frankson the street was named after was until I did some Googling a while back, which revealed that he was a bison farmer and real estate developer, and politician who lived at the corner of Midway Parkway and Hamline (NW corner).

It turns out that he knew how to get under his fellow politician’s skin. For example, while a member of the MN House of Representatives in 1911, he really pissed off the Rep. from Thief River Falls. Frankson was chased around the MN house floor until he was eventually caught and choked:

Unprecedented and riotous scenes marked the filibuster in the House of Representatives when D.P. O’Neill of Thief River Falls made a fierce physical assault on Thomas Frankson, shaking the Representative by the throat and bending him back over the desk of C.E. Stone until other members interfered.

Does that sort of thing still happen in the MN house, or are we more civilized these days?

It’s amazing what you can find in the newly opened up NY Times archives.

2 thoughts on “The Choking of Thomas Frankson”

  1. Thomas Frankson was my great grandfather. My mother wasn’t even born at the time of this incident. I think it’s hilarious! THANKS!

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