Graham, Frances, 1921-
- Existence: 1921-
Frances Ruth Hill Graham, amateur historian and clubwoman, was born in Coggon, Iowa, in 1921, the first of Ruth and Lacy Dewitt "L.D." Hill's three children. A lifelong supporter of 4-H, Graham's membership in the Linn County "Be Natural" 4-H club sparked an interest in home economics. After earning a degree in Home Economics from Iowa State College (now Iowa State University) in 1943, Frances Hill took a position teaching Vocational Homemaking in Kalona, Iowa. Two years later, in 1945 she moved to West Union to teach Homemaking. It was in the spring of 1947 that Frances Hill met her future husband John Graham, a farmer and World War II veteran. The two were married in December of the same year. Frances Graham was a member of the Eastern Star, and John, a Mason. The Grahams moved to a farm near Hawkeye, Iowa, where they raised three children: John R., James, and Willona (named after her paternal grandparents, William and Ona). Frances Graham joined the History and Travel Club of Hawkeye in 1958, which led to her lengthy career as an amateur Iowa historian. During the 1970s, Graham chaired both the Fayette County Federated Women's Clubs and the Fayette County Bicentennial Commission, overseeing many bicentennial activities. In 1996 she was given the Iowa Volunteer Award by Governor Terry Branstad. John W. Graham died in 1999, after fifty-two years of marriage. In 2010 Frances Graham moved to Johnston, Iowa, to live with her daughter and son-in-law.