About Frances Elizabeth Hook Stewart
Info. by Courtney Burge, Oct. 2009:
Notes for Frances Elizabeth Hook Stewart:
FROM THE GALLIPOLIS DAILY TRIBUNE-BY JAMES SANDS-Date unknown
Near the village of Thivener (also known as Thevinen and Yellowtown), there is a small private
cemetery. One of the stones there bears the name Frances Angel, wife of Mathew Angel. Frances was
probably Gallia County's least known heroine.
Mrs. Angel was born in 1844 in Lemoyne, Illinois as Frances Elizabeth Hook. Frances and her
younger brother by two years was reared by close relatives after both of their parents died while the
children were quite young.
When the Civil War broke out, young master Hook joined in the fight. Frances considered herself to
be just as patriotic as her brother. She donned male attire, then walked to Indiana where she enlisted in
the 15th Indiana Volunteer Infantry, using the name B. Frank Miller.
In 1863 Frances or Frank was assigned to the Army Corps of General William Tecumseh Sherman.
With Sherman Miss Hook fought beside the men at Murfreesboro, Missionary Ridge, Look-out
Mountain and Chickamauga.
Through all of these campaigns, Frances was able to keep her sex a secret. She was not particularly
large or strong woman but she endured the hardships of war as any man had. On Sept 20th, 1863,
Frances was wounded severely in the leg at the Battle of Chickamauga. Unable to move, she was
captured by the Rebels. Her wound was cared for by southern doctors and she was conveyed to an
Atlanta, Georgia prison.
Oddly enough, however, her true identity as a woman was not discovered until February 17th, 1864,
the day that she was released from prison with 27 other soldiers. Her condition upon release was poor.
The wound in her leg (caused by a minnie ball) had turned to gangrene and nearly the entire calf of
that leg was destroyed. As she was being carried from the prison she shouted: "Hurrah for God's
Frances next stop was the Nashville Federal Hospital and then to Pennsylvania. During the war she
wrote her brother to tell him of her adventures. The brother wrote back and said that he was so upset
with his sister that he was thinking of no longer claiming her as kin.
We have portions of Miss Hook's reply back to her brother: "My Dear Brother:--- I wish to say in reply
to your recent letter that I volunteered in the Army because I wished to have a part in the defense of
my country's flag. I think I love my country as well as you do, and by sufficient drilling I think I may
learn to shoot as well as you can and if my health continues good I may be of equal service as that of
After the Civil War, Miss Hook settled at Harmar, Ohio, now a part of Marietta. It was here that she
became acquainted with Mathew Angel who had also served his country well while a member of the
91st Heavy Artillery which incidentally was commanded by Captain Edward Aleshire of Gallipolis.
Mathew Angel and Frances Hook were united in marriage at the Angel family homestead near
Northup, Ohio on Aug 12th, 1866 by Jessee Ingalls.
Later Mathew and Frances moved to the Yellowtown community. For many years there was a place
called Angeltown on Bullskin Creek, about two miles southwest of Thivener. The Angels reared two
daughters. Mary became the wife of a Minnesota farmer and Margaret (Maggie) became the wife of B.
P. Dixon, a railroad man of Huntington, West Virginia.
Despite the fact that Frances Angel had to limp through most of her life because of the Battle of
Chickamauga, she still managed to lead a full life. She died of Dropsy, June 8th, 1872.
It is a shame, however, that Mrs. Angel never received much recognition in the historical annals of
Gallia County. Many men did not participate in as much fighting as Miss Quinn did, and yet received
numerous plaudits in Hardisty's and other historical works.
Women Soldiers of the Civil War,Part 3 (National Archives and Records Administration)
Some soldiers were revealed as women after getting captured. Frances Hook is a good example. She
and her brother, orphans, enlisted together early in the war. She was twenty-two years old, of medium
build, with hazel eyes and dark brown hair. Even though her brother was killed in action at Pittsburgh
Landing, Hook continued service, probably in an Illinois infantry regiment, under the alias Frank
Miller. In early 1864, Confederates captured her near Florence, Alabama; she was shot in the thigh
during a battle and left behind with other wounded, who were also captured. While imprisoned in
Atlanta, her captors realized her gender. After her exchange at Graysville, Georgia, on February 17,
1864, she was cared for in Union hospitals in Tennessee, then discharged and sent North in June.
Having no one to return to, she may have reenlisted in another guise and served the rest of the war.
Frances Hook later married, and on March 17, 1908, her daughter wrote the AGO seeking
confirmation of her mother's military service. AGO clerks searched pertinent records and located
22. Document file record card 1502399, RG 94, NA; and "Women Soldiering as Men."
Frances Hook, aka Frank Miller/Henderson, wounded in battle with the 65th Illinois, was discharged
but reenlisted in the 19th Illinois regiment.
She also served in the 90th and the 3rd Illinois.
She was taken prisoner in Tennessee when she was wounded in the leg and her sex revealed.
Exchanged with other prisoners, she refused to "go home" and instead enlisted with the 90th Illinois,
She was captured and sent to the prison in Atlanta where she was shot while attempting to
escape. She recovered and was again exchanged.
JUNE 4, 1864.
A ROMANTIC STORY OF A FEMALE SOLDIER.
The Washington Republican says:
"Doctor Walker who is well known to many of our citizens, write from Chattanooga an account of a
singular case of female martial spirit and patriotic devoted to the flag.
"Frances Hook's parents died when she was only three years old, and left her, with a brother, in
Chicago, Illinois. Soon after the war commenced, she and her brother enlisted in the Sixty-Fifth
"Home Guard," Frances assuming the name of Frank Miller. She served three months and mustered
out without the slightest suspicion having arisen of her sex. She then enlisted in the Ninetieth Illinois,
and was taken prisoner in a battle near Chattanooga. She attempted to escape and was shot through the
leg and captured. The rebels searched her person for papers, discovered her sex, respected her as a
women, and gave her a sperate room while in prison at Atlanta, Ga.
During her captivity she received from Jeff. Davis an offer of a lieutenant's commission if she
would enlist in their army. She has no home and no relatives, but she said she preferred to fight as a
private soldier for the Stars and Stripes rather than be honored with a commission from the rebels. The
insurgents tried to exhort from her a promise that she would go home and not enter the service again.
"Go home!" she said: "my only brother was killed at Pittsburg Landing, and I have no home-no
"Doctor Walker described Frank as of about medium hight, with dark hazel eyes, dark brown hair,
rounded features and feminine voice and appearance." (Chelsea Telegraph and Pioneer; June 4, 1864;
pg. 3, col. 1.)
From http://www.galliagenealogy.org/Civil%20War/quinn.htm Woman Was Soldier in Union Army
From the Gallipolis Bulletin May 26, 1916 Transcribed by Henny Evans
In a little private cemetery near the village of Thivener, a few miles from Gallipolis, Ohio, there sleeps one whose name, instead of being chiseled on an impervious marble slab bearing the simple dates of her birth and demise, should be written boldly and indelibly with those of the patriots and heroes of history. The great Civil War between the states, now almost half a century past the full history of whose stirring incidents and deeds of patriotism near has nor never will be fully written, was, as are all other wars, the source of untold deeds of valor, which even after the lapse of 50 years will continue to be revealed so long as there remains alive a single one of the participants in that memorable struggle. Among all these stories of thrilling days none has been produced that would breathe the spirit of patriotism and present greater real stirring romances than a history of Frances Quinn. Away back about 1844, in the little town of LeMoyne, Ill., Frances Elizabeth Quinn was born of humble but eminently respectable parentage, whose home two years later was again blessed with a son. These children grew up into their teens around the home fireside, when both parents died and the children were left under the care of their nearest relative.
Enlisted in Indiana
The son having reached his seventeenth year, drifted away from his boyhood home, and the Civil War opening he enlisted in the Federal army. Soon afterward Frances, being fired by the spirit of patriotism and by the enlistment of her only brother determined also to volunteer, and secretly donning male attire and going over into Indiana, where a regiment was being organized, offered her services under the name of B.F. Miller or Frank Miller, as she became known among her comrades. Her regiment was the Fifteenth Indiana Volunteer Infantry, and in 1863 was before the close of the war assigned to the Fifteenth Army Corps, commanded by the General W.T. Sherman, many of whose troops were in the engagements at Murfreesboro, Chickamauga, Missionary Ridge and Lookout Mountain, among which was Frank Miller's regiment, the Fifteenth Indiana. Up to 1863 Frank Miller had succeeded in preventing the discovery of her sex. Though not unusually large or strong for one of her sex and age she had endured the privations and hardships of many long marches, and had done her part on the picket post and the routine duties of the camp until September 20, 1863. It was then that the historic battle of Chickamauga was fought and it was there that the Illinois heroine received a severe wound in one of her limbs which resulted by her being captured by the enemy.
Taken to Prison
Though the wound was severe and by various complications threatened her life, she was conveyed to the confederate Prison at Atlanta, Ga., where she was confined until February 17, 1864, when her identity having been discovered she was enrolled among the 27 other prisoners for exchange. Her condition when exchanged was very pitiable. The wound in her leg was caused by a minnie ball, and while in the prison gangrene set in and nearly the entire calf of the leg was destroyed. When carried from the ambulance the true martial spirit she had displayed all during her term of army service was undimmed, and her first words onentering the Union lines were: "Hurrah for God's country!" After Frank Miller's exchange she was sent to a hospital at Nashville, Tenn., where she measurably recovered and went from there to Pennsylvania, where she remained until the close of the war, after which she went to Harmar, Ohio. While at Harmar she became acquainted with Matthew Angel, who had served in the Union Army in a company of the Ninety-first Ohio Heavy Artillery, under command of Captain Edward Aleshire, of Gallipolis.
Reprimanded by Brother
Angel and Miss Quinn, alias Frank Miller, were married at Northup, Ohio, near the former home of the Angels, where they both died, having been blessed with two daughters whom they named Mary and Maggie respectively. Maggie, the younger, is the wife of B.P. Dixon, a well-known railroad man of Huntington, and Mary is the wife of a prosperous ranch owner in Minnesota. While Mrs. Angel's enlistment in the army was a most extraordinary occurrence, any one old enough to remember the thrilling time of 1861-62 can well recall how the young Northern heart beat with patriotism when Ft. Sumter was fired upon and the inflammatory speeches which were heard on every hand, both North and South. Mrs. Angel's only brother had volunteered and she, without father or mother to advise her, was seized by the same spirit which had actuated her brother, and she resolved to enlist. Soon after her enlistment she received a letter from her brother highly reprimanding her for the act and even threatening not to recognize her as a sister.
Answers Brother's Letter
A reply to this, a copy of which is now in the hands of her Huntington daughter, was a stinging rebuke to her brother and sets forth her motive for enlistment. In it she says:
"My Dear Brother:--I wish to say that in reply to your recent letter that I volunteered in the Army because I wished to have a part in the defense of my country's flag. I think I love my country as well as you do, and by sufficient drilling I think I may learn to shoot just as straight as you can and if my health continues good I may be of equal service as that of yourself."
Touching the history of the case there can be no doubt but what her motive for enlistment was that of patriotism and though the most rigid examination of her war record has been made not the slightest tinge has been discovered connected with her moral character, and no family were more respected than they who resided on a nice little farm not far from Thivener, Ohio. The pages of fiction can picture no more interesting case than this--the demonstration of a young woman's patriotism, which was so intense that she would endure the hardships of the soldier, suffer to be painfully wounded, be incarcerated in a prison for four months, all because she loved her country and its flag.