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Pvt Franklin Davis
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Birth: May 10, 1845
Highland County
Ohio, USA
Death: May 17, 1908
Nebraska, USA

Private FRANKLIN DAVIS, Co. F, 86th Illinois

Franklin Davis was born on __________ __, 1845 in Higland County, Ohio. He is believed to be the son of Branson Davis and Martha Maria (Zimmerman) Davis.
Carol Dorward found the family in 1850 in Madison Twp., Highland Co., OH--without a father.

Martha Davis, 36, Ohio
Wm. W. Davis, 17, Ohio, farmer
Michael A. Davis, 15, Ohio
Elijah G. Davis, 13, Ohio
Christopher C. Davis, 11, Ohio
George W. Davis, 7, Ohio
Franklin Davis, 5, Ohio
Mary Davis, 2, Ohio

Carol also found one family record that has the mother of Christopher and Franklin as Martha Maria Zimmerman (b. May 14, 1813 in Ross Co., OH - d. December 29, 1902 in Nebraska. She was the daughter of Andrew Zimmerman and Ruth Ann Taylor.) On the same page in the 1850 census were Zimmermans so I suspect this is correct.) That family record had children as
Allen Michael Davis (1832-1922)
William W. Davis (1833-1876)
Elijah Garret Davis (1836-1915)
Christopher C. Davis (1838-1913)
George W. Davis (1843- )
Franklin Davis (1845-1908)
Mary Davis (1847-1862)

If that family record is correct, the father of Christopher C. and Franklin was a Branson Davis (1804-1840). There is a Branson Davis, in 1840 census, in Madison Twp., Highland Co., OH with wife and four children. He is "employed in agriculture" -- probably a farmer.

From the 1870 census records, it appears the family is clearly in Nebraska by that time.

Since the family can not be found in the 1860 census, it is not known when the family came to Knox County, but Christopher and Franklin are clearly there by the summer of 1862. Carol later wrote after doing much searching, "I'm still trying to find this family in 1860 but have not been successful. I even tried under David. I've tried each of the children who would have been alive and still nothing. My best guess is they were either on the move or still in Ohio with the death of five members of the family between 1862-1863. Other than Elijah's family, I have not found where Branson, William and Mary were buried. I thought that, too, could be a clue as to when they left Ohio--particularly the last two. It's possible Christopher and Franklin came ahead of the rest of the family. When I pulled up Find a Grave for Knox county, there were over 180 individuals buried in that county by the name of Davis. I suspect the Davis brothers came with extended family members and the remainder caught up within a couple years. Nothing, though, to confirm this. After the war, Christopher and Franklin apparently returned to Knox County, but not for long as they're in Nebraska by 1870, including the mother. There must have been some connection for them to return to Knox County!"

On August 2, 1862, Franklin Davis volunteered to serve in a company which was being raised in Maquon, Illinois for service in the Union Army during the Civil War by a local well known Carpenter, Contractor and Businessman by the name of James L. Burkhalter.

Illinois Civil War Detail Report

Company F Unit 86 IL US INF

Personal Characteristics
Age 18 Height 5' 9
Complexion FAIR
Marital Status SINGLE
Occupation FARMER

Service Record
Joined When AUG 2, 1862
Joined Where MAQUON, IL
Period 3 YRS
Muster In AUG 27, 1862
Muster In Where PEORIA, IL
Muster In By Whom
Muster Out JUN 6, 1865
Muster Out Where WASHINGTON, DC
Muster Out By Whom LT SCROGGS

On August 4, 1862, two days after Franklin had volunteered, Christopher C. Davis, also volunteered to serve in the Maquon company. When Burkhalter had about 100 volunteers, he led the Maquon company into Peoria, where they went into camp at Camp Lyon, near present day Glen Oak Park. There on August 27, 1862, he was elected by the men of the Maquon company to be their Captain and Captain Burkhalter and 93 of his volunteers were mustered in as Co. F of the 86th Regiment of Illinois Volunteer Infantry.
On September 7, 1862, the men of the 85th & 86th Illinois marched of the gates of Camp Lyon, Capt. James L. Burkhalter leading Co. F, through the streets of Peoria, with much fanfare, and boarded trains bound for Camp Joe Holt, Jeffersonville, Indiana, located across the Ohio River from Louisville, Kentucky. Three weeks later, the men of the 85th & 86th were in the field in Kentucky as part of Col. Daniel McCook's Brigade in General Buell's Union Army, in pursuit of Confederate troops under the command of General Braxton Bragg. On Oct. 8, 1862, the men of McCook's Brigade were engaged with those troops in the Battle of Perryville, Kentucky, the 86th Illinois suffering their first casualties. There would be many more in the coming years. After the Union victory at Perryville, the Confederate Army withdrew from Kentucky and McCook's Brigade marched on to Nashville, Tennessee, where they went into winter camp. On November 25, 1862, just over two weeks after the men of McCook's Brigade arrived in the Nashville area, the men of Co. F elected Christopher C. Davis to fill one of the Corporal positions that was open in Co. F. He served as a Corporal for the remainder of the war.
During the next two and a half years, the men of McCook's Brogade served in Tennessee, Georgia, Alabama, South Carolina and North Carolina. During this time, Franklin and Christopher were witness to and participants in numerous battles and skirmishes, some of the bloodiest fighting in the Western Theatre of the war, including the Battles of Chickamauga, Georgia; Resaca, Georgia; Rome, Georgia, Kennesaw Mountain, Georgia; Peach Tree Creek, Georgia; Jonesboro, Georgia, Averasboro, North Carolina and Bentonville, North Carolina just to name a few and also marched with Sherman to the Sea.
After the war came to a close, the surviving members of McCook's Brigade marched on to Washington City (now D.C), where they marched down Pennsylvania on the 2nd day of the Grand Review in May of 1865. On June 6, 1865, Private Franklin Davis and Corporal Christopher C. Davis were still there with the surviving members of the 86th when they were mustered out of the service in Washington, D.C. They were then put on trains bound for Chicago, where they received their final pay and were discharged. By the end of June of 1865, the surviving members of the 86th were back home with their families in Central Illinois.

On March 21, 1867, Franklin Davis was married to Hannah Jane "Jennie" Walter in Knox County, Illinois. Hannah was born on September 24, 1849, the daughter of John W. Walter and his 2nd wife, Fanny (Marchant) Thurman Walter, who had been married previously to Mark Thurman, who had died in 1845. Hannah was the half sister of Richeson Cary Walter and Bowater Sumner Walters, who had served with Franklin in Co. F of the 86th Illinois. Hannah also had half brother-in-laws, Joel and Sumner William Darnell, who also served with Franklin in Co. F of the 86th Illinois during the Civil War.
At least five daughters were born to Franklin and Hannah. They are;
1. Vesper V. Davis, born c. 1868 in Illinois.

2. Maude C. Davis, born c. February 3, 1871/72 in Knox County, Illinois.

3. Vida Davis, born c. September 15, 1874 in Nebraska.

4. Winona Davis, born c. March 21, 1877 in or near David City, Butler County, Nebraska. Winona was married to Charles H. Downing on July 30, 1903. Charles had been married previously.
At the time of the 1910 census, Winona and her family are found in Arcadia, Valley County, Nebraska;
Charles H Downing Head M 45 Illinois
Winona Downing Wife F 32 Nebraska
Lucille M Downing Daughter F 19 Nebraska
Irene Downing Daughter F 3 Nebraska

Winona (Davis) Downing died c.March 21, 1944 and her mortal remains were laid in the David City Cemetery in David City, Butler County, Nebraska. See her Find A Grave Memorial# 32756788.

5. Glida Davis, born September 13, 1880 in Nebraska. Glida died on April 23, 1893 and her mortal remains were laid in the David City Cemetery.

At the time of the 1870 census, Franklin and Hannah are still in Maquon Township in Knox County, Illinois;
Franklin Davis, 25, OH, Farmer
Hannah J. Davis, 20, IL
Vesper V. Davis, 1, IL

Sometime between 1872 and 1875, Franklin and Hannah also moved their family west, joining the family in Butler County, Nebraska. At the time of the 1880 census, Franklin is found in David City, Butler County, Nebraska;
Franklin Davis, age: 35; marital status: Married; occupation: Farmer & County Treasurer; birthplace: Ohio; spouse's name: Jennie Davis; spouse's birthplace: Illinois; father's birthplace: Ohio; mother's birthplace: Ohio;
self Franklin Davis M 35 Ohio
wife Jennie Davis F 26 Illinois
daughter Vesper Davis F 12 Illinois
daughter Maude Davis F 9 Illinois
daughter Vida Davis F 5 Nebraska
daughter Winona Davis F 3 Nebraska
daughter Glida Davis F 0 Nebraska

In 1887, some of the surviving members of the 86th Illinois organized and held a reunion in Peoria, Illinois on August 27, 1887, the 25th anniversary of the mustering in of the men of the 86th Illinois. This reunion was attended by more than 125 members of the 86th Illinois. The reunion was such a success that they continued to hold these reunions on or as close to that August 27th date as possible and they continued to grow for a number of years. The reunions, however, were never well attended by members of Co. F and if they ever found out about the reunions, which continued to be held through 1923, neither Private Franklin Davis or his brother, Corporal Christopher C. Davis, never attended any of the reunions.

Hannah Jane (Walter) Davis died on November 1, 1905. Franklin Davis died two and a half years later on May 17, 1908. Christopher C. Davis died on July 3, 1913. Franklin, Christopher, and their wives are all buried in the David City Cemetery in David City, Nebraska.

by Baxter B. Fite III and Carol Dorward, of Washington, Illinois.

(Baxter would enjoy hearing from anyone, especially descendants of the Davis family, who might be able to add to the biographical material that we have on Franklin Davis and the Davis family. Baxter would also love to see copies of any photographs of Franklin Davis, which may have survived the years, added to his Find A Grave site for all to see.)

Family links: 
  Martha Mariah Zimmermen Davis (1813 - 1902)
  Hannah Davis (1849 - 1905)
  Winona Davis Downing (1877 - 1944)*
  Gilda Davis (1880 - 1893)*
  Allen M Davis (1832 - 1922)*
  Elijah Garret Davis (1836 - 1915)*
  Christopher Columbus Davis (1838 - 1913)*
  Franklin Davis (1845 - 1908)
*Calculated relationship
David City Cemetery
David City
Butler County
Nebraska, USA
Plot: 4 17 SE 1/4
Maintained by: Baxter B. Fite III
Originally Created by: Duane
Record added: Jan 08, 2009
Find A Grave Memorial# 32756654
Pvt Franklin Davis
Added by: Richard Horton
Pvt Franklin Davis
Cemetery Photo
Added by: Zoe
Photos may be scaled.
Click on image for full size.

- Tommie
 Added: May. 17, 2011

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