Another woman who posed as a male soldier was Sarah Edmonds. She enlisted in the 2nd Michigan Infantry under the name of Franklin Thompson on May 14, 1861. She fought at Antietam, Maryland without injury, but a few months later contracted malaria. A medical examination would, of course, have revealed her sex, so she deserted the army, working for a time as a spy.
Disguised as a male slave, wearing “a wig of real Negro wool”, she claimed to have visited Richmond several times.
She attended a regimental reunion as a woman in 1884 and was persuaded by former comrades to petition Congress to revoke her conviction as a deserter and file for a veteran’s pension. According to records of the Grand Army of the Republic, Sarah Emma Edmonds was its sole female member.
From More Civil War Curiosities by Webb Garrison