Franz, Jacob Herman (1913–1978)
Jacob Herman Franz fonds
Dates of Creation
60 cm of textual material, 26 photographs, and 1 map
Jacob H. Franz was born on July 26, 1913 in Ebenfeld, in the Crimea. Because his parents, Hermann and Susanna Wall Franz, died during the difficult years in Russia, Franz and Maria Koop provided a home for him, his two brothers, and his sister. In 1930, the family immigrated via Germany to Coaldale, Alberta. Jacob Franz was baptized and received into the Coaldale Church in 1936. He graduated from both the Coaldale and Three Hills Bible Schools after which he taught at Three Hills Bible School for three years. During this time, on July 8, 1942, he married Helene Janzen.
In 1944 he was ordained to the ministry by his home church and in 1945 the Franz’s received a call from the Mennonite Brethren Board of Missions to begin a work among the Chulupi Indians of Paraguay. The following year in March, he and his wife, and the B.P. Epps left Canada for their first term of service. The Lord blessed the ministry and many Indians were saved and churches and schools were begun. In 1955 he was appointed missions secretary for Paraguay and in this capacity he worked with the Light to the Indians mission in the Chaco, the Spanish mission in Asuncion and the German Mennonite Brethren churches. In 1961, they moved to Asuncion were he helped organize the first German Mennonite Brethren church and remained its first leader until 1969. In 1971, he was called to pastor the King Road Mennonite Brethren Church in British Columbia, a service he fulfilled for nearly eight years.
Jacob Herman Franz died on November 25, 1978 at Clearbrook, British Columbia.
The Jacob Herman Franz collection was donated by Mrs. Helen Franz of Clearbrook, British Columbia in January 1986. Photos and recollections by Helen Franz were donated for copying in 2008.
Scope and Content
The Jacob Herman Franz collection consists of a large amount of correspondence, predominantly in the German language, some in the Gothic script. The fonds is arranged according to subjects that grow out of Franz’s work among the South American Indians. In the collection are minutes and reports, books, and yearbooks of the South American MB Conference that were not created by Franz, but that demonstrate his interests and his work, such as various gospels and grammars in the Chulupi language. Also in this fonds are photographs of thier work and a detailed map of the Paraguayan Chaco.
- Location: Textual records, Volumes 952–953, photograph collection NP184-01, maps NMC-4S-23.
- Finding aid consists of a file list.
- Title is based on contents of fonds.
- Accession Number: 1986–10, 2008-028.
- No restrictions on access.
- Language: English, German, and Chulipi.
- Index and obituaries.
- Correspondence and reports regarding the Paraguayan Mission. – 1946–1951.
- Letters from B.H. Unruh to Oberschulz J. Siemens entitled "Fernheim Geschichte." – 1936–1947.
- Minutes, reports, and maps regarding Indian work. – 1961–1965.
- Reports on Indian work. – 1968–1969.
- Papers and reports regarding resettlement of Indians. – 1963–1970.
- Reports and papers regarding Brazil and Peru. – 1968.
- Correspondence to and from J.H. Franz. – 1964–1976.
- Miscellaneous Reports. – 1975.
- Correspondence with Hans Wiens, etc. – 1969–1973.
- Correspondence with C.A. DeFehr and C.C. Peters. – 1968–1971.
- Correspondence with BOMAS and other reports. – 1974–1978.
- Correspondence with MCC and Mission Board. – 1967–1971.
- Minutes regarding Indian work. – 1968–1973.
- Reports regarding mission to Indians by Rennert Hein etc. – 1962–1969.
- Minutes and map of Curitaba, Brazil.
Friesland correspondence. – 1968–1969.
- Reports about the Moro and Auca Indians. – 1955–1958, 1963.
- Booklets about missions, not by Franz. – 1945, 1947, 1963, 1970.
Constitution and confession of faith of the Mennonite Brethren. – 1963, 1965.
Booklet: "Die Mennonitische Bruedergemeinde." – 1957.
Booklet: "Richtlinien fuer eine christliche Hochzeitfeier." – 1956.
Course booklet: "Personal Work" by J.J. Toews for the Bethany Bible School. – 1933.
Paper: "New Wineskins for Old Wine," by Delbert Wiens. – 1965.
- Two Chulupi song books. – 1957, undated.
- Eight booklets of sermons in Chulupi. – 1969, undated.
- Booklet: "Erweiterte Heimatkunde in Form von Vortrage" by K.B. Hildebrand, Paraguay. – [ca. 1970].
Booklet: "Statut der Behoerde fuer Indianersiedlungen," written in Paraguay. – 1970.
- Booklet: "Jahrbuch des Theologischen Instituts der Suedamerikanischen Konferenz der Mennoniten Brueder-Gemeinde." – 1961.
Booklet: "Mennonite Brethren Mission to the Paraguay Chaco Indians." – 1950.
Booklet: "The Present-Day Indians of the Gran Chaco" by Juan Belaieff." – 1946.
Scrapbook: "Missionary Album" by J.H. and Helene Franz. – 1946.
- Two Chulupi readers (Chilupifibel). – Undated.
- Minutes of repentance Sunday in Fernheim. – 1947.
- Reports of mission work in South America. – 1963–1967, 1970, 1977.
- Executive minutes regarding Indian settlement etc. – 1967–1970.
Detailed map of the Mennonite colonies in the Chaco, now in CMBS map collection. – Undated.
- Statistics and economics information about the Mennonite colonies in Paraguay and mission work among the Indians in the Chaco. – 1965–1966.
Responses to a questionnaire about colonies in South America. – 1966–1967.
- Anthropology papers about mission work among Indians.Minutes regarding mission work among the Indians. – 1970–72.
- Verhandlungen, Berichte and Beschluesse of the South American District Conference of the Mennonite Brethren held at Vollendam. – 1952.
- Questions and answers about Chulupi culture. – 1973.
- Chulupi language grammar book by J.H. Franz. – Undated.
- Verhandlungen, Berichte and Beschluesse of the South American District Conference of the Mennonite Brethren held at Fernheim. – 1953.
- Verhandlungen, Berichte and Beschluesse of the South American District Conference of the Mennonite Brethren held at Friesland. – 1954.
- Verhandlungen, Berichte and Beschluesse of the South American District Conference of the Mennonite Brethren held at Bage, Brazil. – 1956.
- Verhandlungen, Berichte and Beschluesse of the South American District Conference of the Mennonite Brethren held at Filadelfia, Fernheim Paraguay. – 1958.
- Verhandlungen, Berichte and Beschluesse of the South American District Conference of the Mennonite Brethren held at Curitiba, Brazil. – 1960.
- Berichte and Beschluesse of the South American Conference of the Mennonite Brethren held at El Ombu, Uruguay. – 1962.
- Berichte and Beschluesse of the South American Conference of the Mennonite Brethren held at Friesland, Paraguay. – 1964.
- Berichte and Beschluesse of the South American Conference of the Mennonite Brethren held at Curitiba, Brazil. – 1967.
- Berichte and Beschluesse of the Paraguay Conference of the Mennonite Brethren held at Volendam, Paraguay. – 1968.
- Berichte and Beschluesse of the Paraguay Conference of the Mennonite Brethren held at Asuncion, Paraguay. – 1970.
- Berichte and Beschluesse of the South American Conference of the Mennonite Brethren held at Curitiba, Brazil. – 1973.
- Geschichte der Mennoniten Brueder Gemeinde in Paraguay, by Clarence Hiebert. – 1976–1977.
- Protokoll of the Mennonite Brethren Conference of Brazil. – 1969.
- Protokoll der Prediger and Diakonen in Chaco. – 1954.
- Mennonitisches Jahrbuch fuer Sudamerika. – 1968–1969.
- Spanish song book. – 1967.
- Four Chulupi readers. – 1953, 1964, 1965.
- Chulupi grammar. – 1968.
- Booklet: "Mennonite Chaco Indians and Lengua Spirit World" by J.A. Loewen. – 1965.
- Certificate in honor of J.H. Franz, Mennonite Mission, Filedelphia Paraguay from the Minister of National Defense. – 1959.
- Recollections of mission work in Paraguay by Helen Franz and other materials gathered about their work. -- 2008.
Photograph Collection NP184-01 Jacob and Helen Franz, missionaries to Pragauay
NP184-01:1 David Hein with Moro spear. - 1958?. - 9 x 12 cm [b&w].
This photo is of missionary David Hein holding a spear made by the Moro Indians of Paraguay. This is the spear that killed fellow missionary Cornelius Isaak. David is standing by the side of a jeep with trees in the background and a low plant in front of him.
NP184-01:2 David Heim with Moro Indians. - 1958?. - 11.5 x 8.75 cm [b&w].
This photo is of David Hein with Moro Indians. They are standing outside of a grass thatched roof house. The men are holding weapons. Three of the men are wearing head dresses which look like snake skin. One woman and one young boy are standing with them.
NP184-01:3 Moro natives holding the spear that was used to kill David Hein. - 1958?. - 11.5 x 9 cm [b&w].
This photo is of three Moro Indians dressed in Western dress. The middle men is holding the spear believed to have killed Cornelius Isaak. The middle man is Jakes Longuage. To his left his son, Cassilla de Gore and Joese, another of jakes first students. There is a building with a cross above the door and two children standing by an open gate. The rightof the photo is a dog. There is another building to the left of the larger one.
NP184-01:4 Two Moro Indians. - 1958?. - 9 x 14 cm [b&w].
This photo is of two Moro Indians. They are seated on the ground. They appear to be eating. There is a bowl of something that could be food. They are in their native dress. The scrub trees are in the background.
NP184-01:5 Moro Indian with spear.. - 1958?. - 9 x 14 cm [b&w].
This photo is of a Moro Indian holding a spear. The trees and in the background. He is standing on a path. This is the spear that killed Cornelius Isaak, missionary
NP184-01:6 Moro women. - 1958?. - 9 x 12 cm [b&w].
This photo is of women and two men. They are outside. Three are standing and two are sitting. They are dressed in native dress. They do not wear shoes.
NP184-01:7 Moro women and men. - 1958. - 14 x 9 cm [b&w].
This photo is of Moro women and men. They are sitting outside in the grass and trees. One man is standing to the right of the Photo.
NP184-01:8 Widow, Mary Isaak and four children. - 1958. - 11 x 8 cm [b&w].
This photo is of Mark Isaak, widow of Cornelius Isaak and their four children. The youngest, on her lap, is Siegfried who was born after Cornelius died.
NP184-01:9 Cornelius Isaak and family. - 1958. - 13 x 8.5 cm [colour].
This photo is of Cornelius Isaak, his wife Mary, and three children. It is taken outside by a tree.
NP184-01:10 Vince Kremenak and family. - 19-. - 7.5 x 5 cm [b&w].
This photo is of Vince Kremenak, his wife and 5 children. They are seated and one girl is standing. They are dressed in Sunday best.
NP184-01:11 Vince and Imogene Kremenak and family. - 19-. - 12 x 9 cm [b&w].
This photo is of Vince and Imogene Kremenak and their children. Davey 6, Sherel Ann 11, Kenny 8, Kitty 2, Susie 4.
NP184-01:12 Cornelius Isaak's funeral. - 1958. - 11.5 x 7.5 cm [colour].
This photo is of the funeral of Cornelius Isaak. He is lying in the coffin and a group of people are looking on. The photo is taken outside the church in the yard. There is a tree to the left of the building.
NP184-01:13 Cornelius Isaak funeral. - 1958. - 12.5 x 8.5 cm [colour].
This photo is of the funeral of Cornelius Isaak. The coffin is outside beside the church. A large group of people are standing and sitting aroung the bier. David Hein is standing to the left of the coffin.
NP184-01:14 Cornelius Isaak's grave. - 1958. - 12 x 9 cm [b&w].
This photo is of Gerhard Hein standing by Cornelius Isaak's grave. There is a woman standing to the right under a tree. There are plants of various kinds on the grave and around it.
NP184-01:15 Chulupi children. - 195-. - 9 x 6 cm [b&w].
This photo is of Chulupi children standing outside by a building. The girl in the middle is holding a large ball. They are all barefoot.
NP184-01:16 Jake Franz. - 195-. - 6 x 8.5 cm [b&w].
This photo is of Jake Franz riding in a cart pulled by two horses. The horses names are Max and Krolie.
NP184-01:17 Chulupi men. - 195-. - 9 x 6 cm [b&w].
This photo is of two Chulupi men standing outside a thatched roof building. A small tree is to the right of the men. They are wearing head dresses and long pants. There is a person in the doorway of the building.
NP184-01:18 Students of Jake Franz. - 195-. - 6 x 9 cm [b&w].
This photo is of students of Jake Franz. The are standing outside. They do not have footwear. One boy is wearing a sombrero accompanied by a great smile.
NP184-01:19 Community well. - 195-. - 5.5 x 6 cm [b&w].
This photo is of a woman getting water from the community well. It is built in with wood planks surrounding the well. There are a few trees in the background. There is a pail on the ground beside the well.
NP184-01:20 Helen Franz, Irma Hein, Chulupi women. - 195-. - 11 x 9 cm [b&w].
This photo is of Helen Franz, left, and Irma Hein standing at a market with Chulupi women. There is a brick building in the background and a building with a thatched roof to the right.
NP184-01:21 Women sewing. - 1958-. - 12 x 9 cm [b&w].
This is a photo of women sewing and having devotions. They are seated in two rows. A little child is walking in between the two rows. There are several buildings in the background and trees in the distance.
NP184-01:22 Women’s sewing class with Irma Hein and Helen Franz. - 195-. - 11.5 x 9 cm [b&w].
This is a photo of the Chulupi women’s sewing class with Irma Hein to the left of the photo and Helene Franz to the right. Some are seated and others are standing beside a brick building. The women do not wear shoes.
NP184-01:23 Spinning wool. - 195-. - 11.5 x 9 cm [b&w].
This photo is of a woman spinning wool. She is sitting on the ground outside with a brick building in the background.
NP184-01:24 Chulupi woman beside her hut. - 195-. - 12 x 9 cm [b&w].
This photo is of a Chulupi woman standing beside her hut. She is holding a tree in her hand. There are more trees in the background.
NP184-01:25 Church service. - 195-. - 11 x 8.5 cm [b&w].
This photo is of a church service outside with Chulupi people. They are seated on the ground and on chairs.
NP184-01:26 Chulupi man teaching school. - 1967. - 12 x 9 cm [b&w].
This photo is of a Chulupi man teaching school. He has a chalk board and is inside a brick building.