Representative Frank W. Oertel View All Years

Compiled Historical Information
Date of Death: 9/4/1957
Birth County: Keokuk
Party Affiliation: Republican
Assemblies Served:
House: 37 (1917) - 38 (1919)
Home County: Lee
Frank W. Oertel
Lee County


MR. SPEAKER: Your committee, appointed to prepare a suitable resolution commemorating the life, character and public service of the late Honorable Frank W. Oertel, begs leave to submit the following memorial:

Frank Oertel, son of Frank and Emily Hesbacher Oertel, was born December 9, 1887, in Keokuk, Iowa. He passed away on September 4, 1957, in Graham hospital, Keokuk, Iowa, at the age of sixty-nine years.

Mr. Oertel was united in marriage with Gertrude K. Jackson on March 1, 1941.

In addition to serving as judge of the only Superior court in Iowa for seven years, Judge Oertel was elected to the state legislature in 1917 and 1919 as Representative from Lee county in the Thirty-seventh and Thirty-eighth General Assemblies. He also was justice of the peace in Keokuk, Iowa, for twenty-eight years.

Blind since infancy, Judge Oertel was fortunate in having the selfless devotion of two women—his mother until her death in 1937, and later his wife, who served as his “eyes” in the practice of law, in his duties as a magistrate, and in providing him with what amounted to almost normal vision of the world about him. With him it was a case of sightlessness, not blindness, because he was keenly aware of nature, people, things and events. As a result he enjoyed life immensely and lived it fully, cheerfully, and without a trace of rancor or self-pity.

He started his practice of law in Des Moines in 1911 and later practiced in Oklahoma from 1912 through 1914 before returning to Keokuk and establishing a practice February 8, 1915.

Mr. Oertel was a member of the St. Paul Evangelical and Reformed church and the Lee County Bar Association.

Surviving Mr. Oertel are his widow, Gertrude; several cousins and other relatives.

Therefore, Be It Resolved by the House of Representatives of the Fifty-eighth General Assembly of Iowa: That in the passing of the Honorable Frank W. Oertel the state has lost an honored citizen and a faithful, useful public servant.

Be It Further Resolved: That a copy of this resolution be spread upon the Journal of the House and that the Chief Clerk be directed to forward an enrolled copy to the family of the deceased.