Lt. Eli P. Alexander from both Monroe and Williamston, Ingham County, had enlisted as Sergeant in Co. H of the 26th Michigan on August 13, 1862, at the age of 18. He had become 2nd Lieutenant on January 7, 1863, and was promoted to 1st Lieutenant on March 30, 1863. At Alexandria, on Saturday, April 18, Michigan Relief Agent Julia Susan Wheelock noted a commotion next door that morning: "I went down to the Provost Marshalls [Lt. Col. Henry H. Wells, 26th Michigan] after some of the officers & guard to come down & quell a riot. Captain [John] Culver, [26th Michigan], Lt. [Eli P.] Alexander & a file of guards came back with me. They searched the house and found two large demijohns of whiskey and a large quantity of liquor bottles, which they seized and bore away in triumph…" An old woman was fined and referred to Col. Wells. Later Julia, with Josie May, was visiting Washington Street Hospital and St. Paul's Church where several new cases of the 26th Michigan had come in.
By the spring of 1864 Lieutenant Alexander had been assigned acting Aide-de-camp to General Francis Barlow as Chief Engineer of the Pioneer Corps. He was taken prisoner near Petersburg, Virginia on June 22, 1864, with no further record. A fellow POW wrote years later of a story that said Confederate "Bushwhackers" had hung several men after they escaped from a train. "He (Alexander) and a Lieutenant Johnson escaped from the guards to the mountains. There, four men were killed one day soon after, and he was supposed to have been one of them." At Williamston, Michigan, there is a monument, consisting of a statue of a Civil War soldier, in front of the fire station erected by the Women's Relief Corps No. 96 and local citizens in 1916. The G.A.R. inscription reads: "In memory of Eli P. Alexander Post No. 103, 1861-1865." Lieutenant Alexander's image is held in the State Archives of Michigan.
Maintained by: Sandy Vandertol
Originally Created by: Mr. Overmyer
Record added: Mar 08, 2010
Find A Grave Memorial# 49425951