John Franklin Bobbitt was born near English, in Crawford County, Indiana, on February 16, 1876. He was a son of James and Martha (Smith) Bobbitt.
John Franklin Bobbitt was born of true American pioneer stock, who believed that hard work, study, self-discipline, religious faith, and devotion to duty were the absolute ingredients for survival in this life and entry into the life beyond.
The father of John Franklin Bobbitt, James Bobbitt, was a school teacher in the public schools, he was elected superintendent of schools for the county. He was an ordained minister of the Gospel.
Mattie E.(Smith)Bobbitt, mother of John Franklin died in 1884 when Franklin was eight years of age. His father married in 1886 Elizzie E. Gresham. The family, all born in Crawford County, is listed as follows.
James and Martha Bobbitt's children:
John Franklin Bobbitt Feb. 16, 1876
Emma Beatrice Bobbitt Apr. 26, 1878
Arthur Garfield Bobbitt Feb. 6, 1880
James Douglas Bobbitt Jul. 26, 1883
James and Lizzie Bobbitt's children:
Ivan Cecil Bobbitt Jun. 3, 1888
Grace Leons Bobbitt Jan. 23, 1890
Dora Monselle Bobbitt Nov. 21, 1891
Edna Fern Bobbitt Jul. 20, 1898
(Three children died in infancy)
John Franklin Bobbitt was a University professor and author. Arthur Garfield Bobbitt was assistant Principal of Oak Park High School in Chicago, and later did other outstanding work in education. James Douglas Bobbitt was a Surgeon with the U. S. Navy. All the children were civic leaders and prominent in the field of education. Many of the children of these children were successful in the fields of politics, religion, education, and medicine.
When Franklin Bobbitt was 27 years of age he met Sarah Annis. They were both interested in education and worked well together. They were married in California in 1903, after which Franklin Bobbitt was an instructor from 1903 to 1907 in the Phillippine Normal School at Manila. In 1909 Franklin Bobbitt received his Ph.D. degree from Clark University. "He along with a number of brilliant young men brought to the University of Chicago during the years of Judd's leadership, strongly influenced the reconstruction of American education."