The Fratz-Dunn House is located at what was Fort Hoskins. It was not an original building to the Fort, but rather was built after the Fort was sold by the Government at public auction.
The sign says: “In November 1866, Samuel and Mary Frantz arrived in Hoskins with their seven children after traveling by wagon from Iowa. Too late to take advantage of the donation land claims, the couple had to buy land, purchasing the recently decommissioned Fort Hoskins property. For the next three years the Frantz family lived in one of the cramped officers’ quarters while they started a business and built a house.
“Although Samuel Frantz had no prior experience with sawmills, he ran a successful one in Hoskins. Using lumber from the Mill, Frantz completed this Gothic Revival style home around 1869 next to the fort’s infirmary and near a reliable spring that fed an existing colder cellar.
“Although the house was impressive in style, it had no interior plumbing at the time. Imagine bathing, cleaning and cooking for nine children (they had two more after arriving in Oregon) without running water or an indoor toilet.
“The T-Shape of the house is typical of Gothic Revival homes from this era; however, the asymmetry of the front elevation is unusual. Having undergone remarkably few alterations since it’s construction, this is one of the best remaining examples of Gothic Revival architecture in Benton County. It was listed in the National Register of Historic Places in 1974 as a significant element of the Fort Hoskins site.
“The house remained in the same family until Benton County acquired the property from the estate of Dick and Francis Dunn (Burbank) in 1992.
“Dick Dunn was related to the Frantz family, and it was his wish that the land where his relatives had first built a dream some 125 years earlier go into public trust and be preserved for the education of future generations.”
In a somewhat ironic twist, a local house has been identified as having been part of the Fort and having been built under direction of Lt. Phil Sheridan, who later made a name for himself as a General in the American Civil War. There is an active movement to restore that house to it’s original location.
You can visit Fort Hoskins at 38150 Hoskins Road, Philomath, Oregon.