Photo of Albert Cashier (nee Jennie Hodgers)
Jennie Hodgers

Quick Facts

Significance:
Woman solider whoe served in Union army
Place of Birth:
Clogherhead
Date of Birth:
December 25, 1843
Place of Death:
Watertown, IL
Date of Death:
October 10, 1915
Place of Burial:
Saunemin, IL
Cemetery Name:
Sunny Slope Cemetery

Jennie Hodgers was born in Ireland in 1834 and came to America as a stowaway on a ship, probably in her mid-teens. In 1861, while living in Belvidere, Illinois, Hodgens enlisted in the 95th Illinois Infantry as Albert D.J. Cashier and was assigned to Company G. Albert served for the duration of the war with the 95th Illinois, which fought approximately 40 battles, including the Siege of Vicksburg and the Atlanta and Red River Campaigns. At one point they were captured by Confederate troops but managed to escape back to Union lines by overpowering a prison guard. Cashier was mustered out of service at Springfield, Illinois, in August 1865.

After the war, Cashier retuned to Belvidere, Illinois and continued to live as a man, working as a farmhand, church janitor, cemetery worker and street lamplighter. Albert even voted in elections and claimed a veteran's pension. Their secret was discovered both by a local family Albert had befriended and a physician who treated Albert after being hit by a car, but none went public with their discoveries. In March 1913, with the onset of dementia, Albert Cashier was sent to the Watertown State Hospital for the Insane, where attendants discovered Cashier's secret. Cashier died on October 10, 1915 and was buried in uniform.

Last updated: September 14, 2017