FRANKLIN P. ELDRIDGE, M.D. - Dr. F. P. Eldridge, well known as a capable physician and surgeon of Greenview and also interested in business affairs in the county as a dealer in coal, was born in Menard county, September 18, 1853. His father, William Eldridge, was a native of England, whence he was brought to America by his parents when three years of age, the family home being established in Baltimore, Maryland. In 1840 he made his way westward, settling in Menard county, which was then largely a frontier district, bearing little resemblance to this highly improved portion of the state. He turned his attention to farming about six miles east of Greenview and continued to make his home upon that place until 1890, when he removed to Greenview, where his death occurred May 6, 1902, when he was seventy-six years of age. His widow still survives him and now makes her home with her son Dr. Eldridge at the age of seventy-seven years.
Dr. Eldridge acquired his preliminary education in the common schools of his native county and his more specifically literary instruction was obtained in Lincoln University, where he spent three years as a student. Having formed the determination to make the practice of medicine his life work he then matriculated in Rush Medical College, where he was graduated with the class of 1878. Locating for practice in Greenview, he remained here for six months and subsequently removed to Kilbourne, Illinois, where he spent seven years. On the expiration of that period, however, he returned to Greenview, where he has since made his home and a large and important patronage has been extended him. He is now examining physician for several insurance companies. He carries all of his own drugs and by constant reading and study he keeps in touch with the progress of the medical fraternity. He belongs to the Brainard District Medical Society, the Menard County Medical Society and the State Medical Society, and in the practice of his profession he displays careful preparation and conscientious service in the performance of his professional duties. Dr. Eldridge has considerable valuable property, including a farm of one hundred and seventy-five acres which he rents, also town realty, is one of the five owners of a coal mine which is being developed under the name of the Greenview Coal & Mining Company, and he also owns five hundred acres of cotton land in St. Francis valley in eastern Arkansas, which he purchased in 1903 and which is very fertile, bidding fair to become a very valuable property.
On the 31st of July, 1879, Dr. Eldridge was married to Miss Emma Whitney, a daughter of Alonzo Whitney, of Indian Point. They have five children: William Roy, who died February 28, 1902, at the age of twenty-two years; Lucia, who was born June 21, 1882, and died May 28, 1900; Homer, who was born August 28, 1884, and is at home; Arstella, who was born December 22, 1886; and Earl, born August 3, 1896. Dr. and Mrs. Eldridge hold membership in the Cumberland Presbyterian church and he is a Knight Templar Mason, belonging to the lodge, chapter and commandery. He is also connected with the Modern Woodmen of America and in fraternal circles has the warm regard which is extended him socially and professionally.