You Ask, We Answer: Who was Frank Hall to Albert Lea?

Published 7:51 pm Friday, May 3, 2019

Question: With changes expected to the boundaries for Lakeview and Sibley elementary schools, what do I do if I attend the wrong kindergarten roundup for my child?

Answer: Whether the boundary changes between Lakeview and Sibley, the district is expected to host a second kindergarten roundup at both schools at a time yet to be determined.

The Albert Lea Area Schools district office can be reached at 379-4800.

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Question: Who was Frank Hall that Frank Hall Drive and Frank Hall Park were named after?

Answer: Frank Hall was Albert Lea’s first mayor, as voted on May 12, 1878, when the city government was organized.

He was born during 1834 in Lewis County, N.Y. His family moved to Beaver Dam, Wisconsin, in 1854, then to nearby Ripon a few years later. In 1858, Hall married Maggie Foster, and they came to Albert Lea a few months later. One of his first ventures was opening a general merchandise store.

In the spring of 1862, he helped to organize Company C for the Fifth Minnesota Infantry Regiment, a unit of local volunteers. Hall became a captain and was soon promoted to the rank of major. He was discharged from military service in 1863.

Hall eventually owned a hotel, the Hall House, the mill near the dam at the outlet of Fountain Lake, and started a bank. He became Albert Lea’s first mayor in 1878 and was elected to this office again in 1881, 1883, 1884 and 1886, according to a list of the city’s mayors prepared by Linda Evenson, the museum’s librarian.

In 1886, Hall moved to Gig Harbor, Washington, and ultimately died on Sept. 7, 1903, as the result of a hunting accident near Gig Harbor.

“You Ask, We Answer” is a weekly column dedicated to answering questions submitted by you, the readers. We will answer two to three questions per week. Have a question you want to submit? Email Managing Editor Sarah Stultz at or send her a letter at 808 W. Front St. Label as “Questions of the week.”