Then and now:

Then and now:

The Kraner family

THEN: James Garfield Kraner and Isabel Clem Kraner pose here for a 1928 family photo with their two children, Mary Ellen and James Clem Kraner.

James Garfield Kraner's great-grandfather had moved his family from Baltimore, Md., to settle in Violet Township during 1805.

His father, E.D. Kraner, opened Kraner's general store in 1872 at the corner of Lock-ville Road and Columbus Street.

In his younger years, James Garfield Kraner worked as a U.S. Railway mail clerk, was a star left-handed pitcher for area baseball teams, played the baritone and cornet, and directed Pickerington's IOOF Band.

He also helped organize annual Labor Day Homecomings and was part of a committee that brought a Carnegie Library to Pickerington.

At age 31, James Garfield Kraner became the first cashier and sole employee of Pickerington Bank when it opened in 1910 at 35 W. Columbus St.

Thirty-four years later, at age 65, Kraner retired.

However, within a year he was elected president of the bank's board of directors and served in that capacity until he suffered a stroke in 1952.

NOW: The James Garfield Kraner family lived in this 1913-constructed 4-bedroom brick home located at 85 E. Columbus St.

While James Garfield Kraner watched over the Pickerington Bank on West Columbus Street (where Lan-Fair Federal Credit Union is located today), Isabel Kraner helped operate Kraner's general store until the family closed the business in 1947.

You can see the former James Garfield Kraner home and Kraner's store (now David Beckham Photography at 6 Lockville Road) en route to the Carnegie Library (now the Pickerington-Violet Township Historical Society Museum) at 15 E. Columbus St. in Olde Pickerington Village.

Historical Society volunteers host an open house each Saturday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Admission is free. Photographs, artifacts and documents about the Kraner and other early Pickerington families can be seen in the two-story Museum.

For museum open house details, go to or call 614-382-5989.

Contributions and questions about "Then and Now" stories can be sent via email to the series' creator, Maggie Arendt, at

The James Garfield Kraner family lived in this 1913-constructed four-bedroom brick house at 85 E. Columbus St.