Franklin Eldredge was born on March 27, 1841 in Ohio City, Ohio, which is
now a part of the city of Cleveland. Franklin was the third child of his father, Hezekiah's, marriage to
Eunice Kellogg of Rochester, N.Y., having lost his first wife and one of his original seven children to
illness. Hezekiah was a builder-architect who maintained a lumber yard in Ohio City and built St. Johns
Episcopal Church, the oldest church still standing in Cleveland today. Eunice died when Franklin was
three, and his father the following year, leaving Franklin and his eight brothers and sisters orphans.
Franklin lived with an older brother until he was 9 or 10, when he went to live with a farmer in Portage
County where he worked until a year after the farmer died, and thereafter lived with and worked for another
farmer just outside of Edinburg. The neighboring farm belonged to the Carr family, and Frank became
friendly with their daughter, Susan.
Responding to a call for volunteers, Frank enlisted in the 7th Regiment,
O.V.I. on April 25, 1861 for a 60 day term, and reenlisted for three years thereafter. He remained
with his unit until March 24, 1864, when he was honorably discharged for disabilities, having achieved
the rank of Sergeant. His regiment fought many battles in Virginia, and Frank was wounded at the Battle
of Port Republic and again at Chancellorsville. He also fought at Antietam, Gettysburg, and Lookout
Mountain, Tn. before being discharged. On July 4, 1865, Frank married Susan Carr and at that time found
work as an engineer on the Atlantic and Great Western Railroad. When oil was discovered in Oil City and
Titusville, Pa., Frank traveled there and drilled oil wells, returning home to Ohio when his absence
upset his growing family. He resumed farming and had sired four children when he became ill suddenly one
day while working a field. He died on May 24, 1872, aged 31, of appendicitis.
Excerpted by Harold P. Baird from The Account of the Life and Civil War Service Record of my Grandfather Franklin
Eldredge (1966) by Sarah Eldredge Rusk
Portrait of Frank Eldredge