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Duval Co. Biographies

BROCK, Frank Jacob
Transcribed from:  The History of Florida:  Past & Present, The Lewis Publishing Co., Vol. 
II, page 72, 1923.

BROCK, FRANK JACOB, president of the Brock Shop Machinery Company, which represents one of
the important industrial enterprises in the City of Jacksonville, with headquarters at 341
East Bay Street, is a native of Florida and has found in his native state ample opportunity
for successful business achievement. He is a scion of a family that was founded in New
England in the Colonial period of our national history. His paternal grandfather, Capt.
JACOB BROCK, a native of Vermont, came to Jacksonville, Florida, in the early '50s and became
the pioneer operator of steamboats on the St. Johns River. He purchased the steamer Darlington
and placed the same in commission between Jacksonville and Elmira. He placed on the same
river route the steamer Hattie, which was built for him by THOMAS H. STEVENS. Captain BROCK
thus operated the first steamboats on the St. Johns River, and after the close of the Civil
war he became associated with THOMAS H. STEVENS in shipbuilding enterprise. In the early '60s
Captain BROCK built the Brock House at Enterprise, Florida, and this he successfully conducted
until his death in 1877. He was survived by four children, HATTIE, JENNIE, JACOB Jr., and
Capt. CHARLES HENRY BROCK, all now deceased. In the Civil war period he had steamers in
operations on the St. Johns River. Federal gun boats pursued his steamer Darlington up the
Amelia River, he having supposed that the intention was to capture and imprison him, while
the real object of the Union forces was to charter his steamer. When he decided that the
capture of his steamer was inevitable he ran the vessel into a draw-bridge, and at this point
he was personally apprehended and was for some time thereafter confined in the Federal prison
at Fortress Monroe, Virginia.

FRANK JACOB BROCK, whose name initiates this review, was born at Palatka, Florida, March 25,
1872, and is a son of Captain CHARLES HENRY BROCK and RHODA ELLA (STEVENS) BROCK, the former
of whom was born at Hartford, Connecticut, and the latter at Steuben, Maine, the subject of
this sketch being the only child. Capt. CHARLES H. BROCK was reared principally in South
Carolina, and when the Civil war was precipitated he went forth as a soldier of the Confederacy.
He became associated with his father in steamboat operations in Florida and also in the shipbuilding
enterprise mentioned in the preceding paragraph. He continued his interest in these enterprises
until the time of his death, and his widow, now venerable in years, resides at Jacksonville.
He was a loyal supporter of the principles of the democratic party and was affiliated with the
Masonic fraternity. Captain BROCK was a man of sterling character and of marked business
ability, and he was one of the honored citizens of Florida at the time of his demise.

In the public schools of Jacksonville FRANK J. BROCK continued his studies until he had profited
by the advantages of the high school, and thereafter he continued his studies in the Florida
State Agricultural College. At the age of sixteen years he entered the employ of the Merrill-
Stevens Company, one of the important manufacturing and commercial concerns of Jacksonville,
later entering business for himself.

The cause of the democratic party finds a staunch support on the part of Mr. BROCK, and in the
Masonic fraternity his affiliations are as here noted: Temple Lodge No. 23, F. and A. M.;
Jacksonville Chapter No. 12, R. A. M.; Damascus Commandery No. 2, Knights Templar; and Morocco
Temple of the Mystic Shrine.

On the 14th of October, 1896, Mr. BROCK wedded Miss HANNAH EVA STROUT, who was born at Millbridge,
Maine, a daughter of FREDERICK and SARAH (KENNEDY) STROUT, now residents of Jacksonville. Mr.
and Mrs. BROCK became the parents of five children: RAY is deceased; CHARLES FREDERICK married
RUTH GRIVIN, and they have one son, CHARLES F., Jr.; NEAL MITCHELL is, in 1922, a student in
Cushing Academy at Ashburnham, Massachusetts; and the two younger children are CHARLOTTE and

Transcribed by Nancy Rayburn

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This page presented August 19, 2010