Records indicate that (Jennie Hodgers) was the only woman in blue or gray who served a full term of enlistment and was honorably discharged.—Webb Garrison, from Amazing Women of the Civil War
Compass Rose Cultural Crossroads is a small, not-for-profit publisher with specialties in history, mythology, culinary lore, and the preservation of folk traditions.
On Christmas Day, 1843, Jennie Hodgers, girl child, was born in Killybush, Clogherhead, County Louth, Ireland. She died as Albert D. J. Cashier, an old soldier, on March 28th, 1915, at the Watertown State Hospital near Jacksonville, Illinois. A veteran of the American Union army, which fought against the Confederacy during the War of the Rebellion, “he” was laid to rest with honors in his adopted town of Saunemin, Illinois. Sometime during the intervening years a young Irish girl chose to go through life masquerading as a man…
Also Known As Albert D.J. Cashier is an account of the life of an Irish immigrant girl, Jennie Hodgers, who came to the United States in the years following the Great Potato Famine. She served for three years in the 95th Illinois Infantry of the Union army under the name Albert Cashier and fought in the battles of Nashville, Mobile, and Vicksburg. Never again would she respond to the name Jennie. No one ever guessed that she was really a woman, and accounts by her fellow comrades indicate that they just assumed Albert was a small, somewhat shy man. In the years following the Civil War, “Albert” took on the life of a bachelor and worked a number of jobs from janitor to handyman. The secret was not discovered until the early 1900s, when an automobile accident broke her leg and she needed medical attention. Based on historical records, Also Known As Albert D.J. Cashier is a fascinating story of a most amazing woman.
Lon P. Dawson is the author of Now Listen Up: An Anthology of Service Memories; A Promise Kept: The Story of the Illinois Veterans Home; the soon-to-be-published military cookbook Culinary Campaign and the autobiography Cradle Cruise: A Navy Bluejacket Remembers Life Aboard the USS Trever During World War II.