Elisha Hunt Rhodes (1842-1917) was the son of Elisha H. and Eliza A. (Chace) Rhodes of Cranston, R.I. When the Civil War broke out, he was working in the office of harness maker Frederick Miller. On June 5, 1861, he enlisted as a private in the Second Regiment of Rhode Island Volunteer Infantry. He received a dramatic series of promotions, the most significant when he was named regimental adjutant on November 7, 1863; became a captain on May 5, 1864; assumed command of the depleted regiment as captain on June 5, 1864; and became colonel of the regiment on July 18, 1865. He remained with the Second Regiment from its creation to the end of the war, and served in many of the war's hardest-fought battles, including First Bull Run, Antietam, Fredericksburg, and Gettysburg.
After the war, he returned to his old position in the harness-making business, and formed the short-lived harness-making partnership of Dunham & Rhodes before receiving an appointment as a federal tax collector. He served as Brigadier General of the Rhode Island Militia from 1879 to 1893, and became very prominent in state veteran affairs. He held the highest posts in the state's department of the Grand Army of the Republic, the Soldiers' and Sailors Historical Society, and the Second Rhode Island Volunteers and Battery A Veterans Association.
Gen. Rhodes married Caroline Pearce hunt in 1866 and had two children: Frederick M. Rhodes and Alice C. (Rhodes) Chace. Rhodes died on January 14, 1917, and is buried in Swan Point Cemetery in Providence, R.I.