John F. French Fortress No. 17,

National Daughters of the G. A. R.
Princeville, Illinois
By Lena Staples, Historian, 1929

This Fortress, named in honor of Captain John F. French, who organized and commanded Company K of the 86th Regiment from Princeville, in the Civil war, was organized on August 21, 1928. Two preliminary meetings had been held at home of Mrs. Almina Kerns. The Fortress at Speer, Illinois sponsored the Princeville Fortress and Mrs. Emma McCraw from Speer, was the organizer.

At the August meeting when organization was perfected, there were present 14 officers and members from Perry L. Austin Fortress of Waukegan, Illinois, also members from Chicago, Antioch. Libertyville, Speer and Woodstock Fortresses. This company gathered for a 6 o'clock dinner at the M. E. church; then proceeded to the High School Gym where the organization was perfected and officers installed.

Two honorary charter members were admitted as follows:

Mrs. Emma Hammer, widow of Henry Hammer.
Mrs. Mary J. Russell, widow of Joseph Russell.

And the following were charter members:

Almina Kerns, daughter of Andrew J. Lair.
Ethel Cheesman, daughter of Charles T. Phillips.
Rebecca G. Smith, daughter of Isaac B. Greenwood.
Lilly Sokop, daughter of Isaac Greenwood.
Grace Sokop, grand-daughter of Isaac B. Greenwood.
Mary Cutler, daughter of David Potts.
Geneva Weaver, daughter of Emanuel Keller.
Jennie Delbridge, daughter of Emanuel Keller.
Irene Debord, daughter of Emanuel Keller.
Elzada Sentz, daughter of John Z. Slane.
Laura Sentz, grand-daughter of John Z. Slane.
Elza Slane, grand-daughter of John Z. Slane.
Maude Carman, daughter of Thomas Williams.
Goldie Smith, daughter of Thomas Williams.
Lucille Camp, grand-daughter of Thomas Williams.
Hilda Smith, grand-daughter of Thomas Williams.
Beatrice Smith, grand-daughter of Thomas Williams.
Laura Wilson, daughter of John Miller.
Irene Potter, grand-daughter of John Miller.
Cora Nixon, daughter of Enos Frost.
Lydia Senior, daughter of Enos Frost.
Marietta Yates, daughter of John Yates.
Lena Staples, daughter of Frank Hitchcock.
Florence Gaster, daughter of Albaugh Cutchall.
May Dusten, daughter of William Coburn.
Flora B. Schaad, daughter of Millard Buck.
Susie Hogaboom, daughter of Millard Buck.
Bessie Kinnah, daughter of Fred Gladfelter.
Emma Gourley, daughter of William Williams.
Anna Kinney, daughter of Matthew H. Rounds.
Carrie Taylor, daughter of James N. Phillips.

And the following member has been admitted since:
Mrs. Emma Shipley, daughter of William H. Wisenburg.

Meetings have been held with more or less regularity since organization. Mrs. Almina Kearns is commander. The Fortress prizes flags which were presented to it by Comrade McCraw from Speer; a Bible presented by Dr. and Mrs. C. H. Wilcox in memory of Mrs. Wilcox's father, James B. Ferguson; and a silk flag for the altar presented by Comrade Sentz.

Up to time of this writing, two of the Charter members have been taken in death, Mrs. May Dusten and Mrs. Elzada Sentz.