A Boston banker, Eldredge was the first husband of Sara Payson Willis, later known by the pen name "Fanny Fern." The couple married in May 1837 and moved temporarily to 18 West Cedar Street in Boston. Their first daughter was born the next year and named Mary Stace, after the new wife of Fern's brother Nathaniel Parker Willis. Later that year, October 30, 1838, the family bought a house in Brighton, Massachusetts. The couple's second daughter, Grace Harrington, was born on February 24, 1841, and their third, Ellen, was born in 1844. Eldridge died of typhoid fever in 1846 and Mary, the eldest daughter, died the same year. Left with two young daughters, Fern struggled to support the family and eventually married merchant Samuel Farrington for support. The marriage was unhappy and ended in divorce. Fern wrote of the experience in her semi-autobiographical novel, Ruth Hall (1854), and recast Eldredge as the handsome and kind Charles Hall. In the novel, after Hall's death, his widow is left without support from either her own parents or her in-laws.