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Frank Ernest Gannett (1876 - 1957)

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Frank Ernest Gannett
Born in South Bristol, Ontario Co., New York, United Statesmap
Ancestors ancestors
Son of and [mother unknown]
[sibling(s) unknown]
[spouse(s) unknown]
[children unknown]
Died in Rochester, Monroe Co., New York, United Statesmap
Profile last modified | Created 6 Apr 2014
This page has been accessed 2,259 times.

Categories: Herman Wills Smith - Friends and Acquaintances | Newspaper Publishers | Mount Hope Cemetery, Rochester, New York | Notables.

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Frank Gannett was a Newspaper Publisher. He founded the Gannett Group. Wikipedia has an extensive biography.[1] The Harvard Square Library,a digital library of Unitarian Universalist biographies, has photos, historical material and information on the Gannett company.[2]

Frank Ernest Gannett was born on 15 Sep. 1876[3] at South Bristol, Ontario Co., New York, USA.[4] He appeared on the census of 17 June 1880 in the household of his parents, Joseph Charles Gannett and Maria (Brooks) Gannett, at Cohocton, Steuben County, New York.[5] He was an editor when he appeared on the census of 1 June 1900 at Ithaca, Tompkins County, New York. He was living in the George Simpson home.[6] In 1906 he purchased half ownership of the Elmira Star Gazette in Elmira, Chemung, New York which was the beginning of his newspaper empire.[1] He appeared on the census of 27 April 1910 in the household of his mother at Elmira, Chemung County, New York.[7] He was a president of a newpaper when he appeared in the census of 10 March 1920 in the household of his mother at Brighton, Monroe County, New York.[8]

He married Caroline "Kynie" Werner, daughter of William E. Werner and Lillie (Boller) Werner, on 25 March 1920 at Rochester, Monroe County, New York.[9]

He and Caroline appeared on the census of 12 April 1930 at Brighton, Monroe County, New York.[10]

In addition to his other interests Frank was interested in genealogy. In 1913 he filed an application for membership in the Sons of the American Revoution based on the service of his gr-gr-grandfather, Benjamin Gannett who was born at East Bridgewater, Massachusetts on Dec. 11, 1727.[4] He also had time to respond to requests about family history. On 3 Jan. 1941 Herman Willis Smith received letter from Frank Gannett stating that he was the nephew of Herman's second cousin's husband.[11] Actually he was the nephew of the husband of Herman's first cousin 1 time removed.[12]

Frank died on 3 Dec. 1957 at Rochester, Monroe Co., New York, USA, at age 81 and was buried at Mount Hope Cemetery, Rochester, Monroe County, New York. His memorial has a number of nice photos, one of Frank and several of his burial site.[13]


February 1958
Unitarian Register
Frank Gannett, 81, Rochester, N.Y., publisher and one of the nation’s most eminent Unitarian laymen, died December 3, 1957, of complications resulting from a fall suffered the preceding April.
Funeral services were conducted in the First Unitarian Church of Rochester by Dr. David Rhys Williams, who had been Mr. Gannett's minister for nearly 30 years.
Mr. Gannett was noted for the development of his publishing group of 22 newspapers in 18 cities. The Gannett Company also owns four radio and three television stations.
Mr. Gannett's other achievements and activities were numerous, and he was the recipient of many honors.
A Republican, he campaigned as an avowed presidential candidate in 1939 and 1940, and his name went before the convention at which Wendell Wilikie was nominated. He urged 25 years ago the inclusion of a Secretary of Peace in the President's cabinet.
Mr. Gannett also was noted for his philanthropic support of research, especially in the newspaper and aviation industries and in the fields of health and medicine. One of the projects he supported produced the Teletypesetter, a typesetting device which can be operated at long distances by electrical impulses. Another was a $500,000 grant by the Gannett Newspaper Foundation to build a student health clinic at Cornell University, Ithaca, N.Y. He also was keenly interested in the development of public recreation facilities.
Honors conferred upon Mr. Gannett included the Civic Medal of the Rochester Museum of Arts and Sciences, received jointly with his wife; honorary membership in Phi Beta Kappa; the Navy's Distinguished Public Service Award; an honorary degree of doctor of journalism from Bradley University and a long list of other honorary doctor's and master's degrees.
Mr. Gannett's newspaper ventures began with his purchase in 1906 of a half-interest in the Elmira, N. Y., Gazette. The Gazette absorbed competition in the Ithaca-Elmira area, and he bought in 1918 two Rochester newspapers, merging them into the Times-Union, and moved to Rochester.
There he looked up a distant cousin, Rev. William Gannett, who was minister of the Unitarian church. Mr. Gannett shortly became a Unitarian and remained throughout the ensuing years a leader in the church.
Noting that most of the persons attending the funeral were familiar with the story of Mr. Gannett's life, Dr. Williams said that “there is one phase of that story about which I may be presumed to speak with some measure of authority. I refer to his religious life.
"Frank Gannett took his religious duties seriously. He made a conscientious effort to be present in the church of his choice on as many Sunday mornings in the year as his health and other obligations would permit.
"I have many reasons to cherish the memory of this man, but I shall cherish it most of all because be faithfully supported not only the freedom of the press over the years, but also the freedom of this pulpit during a 30-year ministry which must often have tried his faith in such a freedom. He was one who could disagree completely with the content of any specific sermon and still find inspiration in the sincerity of its utterance.
"lt has been a rare privilege and a challenging responsibility to serve as his minister, for his religion was bound by no narrow creed. It was to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly before God."[14]


17 June 1880

Cohocton, Steuben County, New York.

  • J. C. Gamitt 39.
  • Maria Gamitt 30.
  • Flora Gamitt 13.
  • Emma Gamitt 9.
  • Melvin Gamitt 8.
  • Frank Gamitt 3.
  • Nellie G. Gamitt 8m.[5]
27 April 1910

Elmira, Chemung County, New York, USA.

  • Maria B Gannett 64.
  • Floria M Gannett 36 dau.
  • Frank E Gannett 34 son.
  • Lillian Murphy 21 servant.[7]
10 March 1920

Brighton, Monroe County, New York.

  • Maria B Gannett 75.
  • Flora M Gannett 45.
  • Frank E Gannett 43.[8]
12 April 1930

Brighton, Monroe County, New York.

  • Frank E Gannett 53.
  • Caroline W Gannett 36 wife.
  • Sarah M Gannett 7 dau.
  • Dixon Gannett 1 son.[10]


  1. 1.0 1.1 Frank Gannett at Wikipedia.
  2. Frank Gannett at Harvard Square Library.
  3. U.S., World War I Draft Registration Cards, 1917-1918 WWI Frank Ernest Gannett.
  4. 4.0 4.1 U.S., Sons of the American Revolution Membership Applications, 1889-1970 SARApp Frank Ernest Gannett.
  5. 5.0 5.1 Year: 1880; Census Place: Cohocton, Steuben, New York; Roll: 933; Family History Film: 1254933; Page: 93C; Enumeration District: 168; Image: 0188. 1880 US Census. J. C. Gamitt.
  6. Year: 1900; Census Place: Ithaca Ward 2, Tompkins, New York; Roll: 1169; Page: 4B; Enumeration District: 0152; FHL microfilm: 1241169. 1900 US Census. Frank Gannett.
  7. 7.0 7.1 Year: 1910; Census Place: Elmira Ward 1, Chemung, New York; Roll: T624_931; Page: 12B; Enumeration District: 0008; FHL microfilm: 1374944. 1910 US Census. Maria B Gannett.
  8. 8.0 8.1 Year: 1920; Census Place: Brighton, Monroe, New York; Roll: T625_1119; Page: 4A; Enumeration District: 3; Image: 600. 1920 US Census. Maria B Gannett.
  9. "New York, County Marriages, 1908-1935," index and images, FamilySearch (NYMarriages: accessed 06 Apr 2014), Frank E. Gannett and Caroline Werner, 25 Mar 1920; citing rn 2127, , New York, United States; FHL microfilm 831348.
  10. 10.0 10.1 Year: 1930; Census Place: Brighton, Monroe, New York; Roll: 1446; Page: 9B; Enumeration District: 0203; Image: 698.0; FHL microfilm: 2341181. 1930 US Census. Frank E Gannett.
  11. Diary of Herman Willis Smith 1883-1965. 29 Oct. 1944. Collection of Phil Smith.
  12. Frank's uncle is George Orrin Gannett. George's wife Ann Jennett Griffin is the Herman's first cousin 1 time removed.
  13. Frank Ernest Gannett memorial at Find A Grave.
  14. Frank Gannett Dies. Unitarian Register February 1958.


Profile researched and started by Phil Smith.

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