Franklin Cogswell Prindle
Rear Admiral, United States Navy
at Sandgate, Vermont, 8 July 1841, the son of Hawley and Olive (Andrew)
Prindle. He received his early education in public schools and then at
the Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy, New York.
He was married three times. His first wife was Gertrude A. Stricke, whom he married on 19 May 1864. His second wife was Sarah A. Cranston, whom he married on 25 September 1878, and his third wife was Mrs. Fidelia E. (White) Mead, whom he married on 8 April 1896.
In addition to duties in the Navy, served as engineer and officer to several companies, including American Dredging Company of Philadelphia, Carolina Oil and Cresote Company of Wilmington, North Carolina, and Aztez Oil Company of Bakersfield, California.
His home was in Washington, DC, where he died 7 May 1923. Burial was in Arlington National Cemetery.
He received appointment from Pennsylvania,
3 August 1861. Promoted to Third Assistant Engineer, 3 August 1861; Second
Assistant Engineer, 17 April 1863; he resigned, 11 September 1865; appointed
Civil Engineer, 22 July 1869; resigned, 31 December 1875; reappointed Civil
Engineer, 22 July 1879; Civil Engineer with rank of Lieutenant Commander,
16 February 1882; Civil Engineer with rank of Commander, 1 September 1898;
Civil Engineer with rank of Captain, 5 January 1901; retired as Civil Engineer
with rank of Rear Admiral, 27 February 1901.
Franklin Cogswell Prindle was born at Sandgate, Vermont, July 8, 1841, the son of Hawley and Olive (Andrew) Prindle. In 1850 he was living in Arlington, Vt. He received his early education in public schools and then at the Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy, New York.
He was appointed Third Assistant Engineer from Pennsylvania, on August 3, 1861, and was ordered to the screw gunboat Ottawa, one of the "ninety-day gunboats" fitted out at the Novelty Iron Works in New York.
He was promoted Second Assistant Engineer, 17 April 1863. In April 1864, he was granted a month's leave of absence, then returned to duty at the Novelty Iron Works in New York, where he spent the remainder of the war.
He resigned September 11, 1865, to take a job with Norman W. Wheeler, mechanical engineer, of New York City. Two years later he was offered and accepted the appointment of assistant civil engineer at the New York Navy Yard, and was shortly thereafter transferred to the Philadelphia Navy Yard, where he was placed in charge of improvements in the public works.
On April 17, 1869, Prindle accepted a commission as a Civil Engineer in the Navy, and continued working at Philadelphia for a while, then transferred to the new League Island Navy Yard, as civil engineer, where he designed and constructed the first buildings there. He resigned from the Navy again on January 1, 1876, and returned to private life as a civil and mechanical engineer in Philadelphia, where he was engineer and secretary of the American Dredging Company. In the fall of 1876, he visited England, Scotland, Belgium, Holland and Germany to study dredging machinery in those countries.
The Navy convinced him to return, and he was reappointed Civil Engineer on July 22, 1879, and ordered to duty at the New York Navy Yard, where he was living in Brooklyn in 1880 and 1881.
On January 28, 1881, Civil Engineer Prindle attended a meeting of the United States Naval Institute at Brooklyn Navy Yard. On June 17, 1882, he sat at the head table at the commencement exercises of the Brooklyn Collegiate and Polytechnic Institute. On September 30, 1883, the Brooklyn Daily Eagle reported:
Civil Engineer F. C. Prindle, who is at the head of the Department of Yards and Docks at the Navy Yard, has been elected a member of the Institute of Civil Engineers - a society which was established in1818 by Telford, the distinguished English engineer, and incorporated by royal charter in 1826.
On July 17, 1884, at Brooklyn Navy Yard, Prindle reacted to the news of the discovery of the Greely Expedition, saying "we are all very glad to hear of the discovery of Greely. We hardly expected that we should so soon be satisfied as to the fate of him and the expedition. It is very cheering indeed, though, of course, it has a very sad and melancholy side to it."
Prindle was still at Brooklyn on February 5, 1886, when he was the plaintiff in a County Court Case involving a judgement of foreclosure and sale of some property.
He was employed as an engineer and superintendent of the Carolina Oil and Creosote Company at Wilmington, N.C., in 1889-90, while on a leave of absence.
He was promoted to Civil Engineer with rank of Lieutenant Commander, on February 16, 1882.
In at least 1895, he was stationed at Brooklyn Navy Yard, where, on May 31, was appointed a member of a board to investigate a fire on the base. He was detached from this command on September 24, 1895, and ordered to report to Key West, on October 15.
Just why this transfer was made is not known, but there is a report that it is due to the fact that while in temporary charge of the bureau, during the absence of Chief Engineer Menocle, he took occasion to hurry up some of the contractors who are working on the yard improvements and they objected to being hurried and had sufficient strength to make their objection felt.
He subsequently served at the Portsmouth Navy Yard, Boston Navy Yard, Newport, RI, Brooklyn, N.Y., League Island, Pa., Norfolk, Va., Port Royal, S.C., Key West, and Pensacola, Fl., Mare Island, California, Puget Sound, Washington, Yerba Buena Island, California, where he completed his last important work, the construction of the Naval Training Station on Yerba Buena Island, in San Francisco Bay, 1898-90. His final tour was at Naval Station, Honolulu in 1900.
Prindle was promoted to Civil Engineer with rank of Commander, September 1, 1898. In June 1900, he was in Honolulu, and speculation in the Brooklyn Daily Eagle was that he was the best candidate to become the chief of the Department of Yards and Docks at Brooklyn Navy Yard.
He became Civil Engineer with rank of Captain, on January 5, 1901. He retired with the rank of Rear Admiral on February 27, 1901. (The latter rank was conferred under authority of an Act of Congress granting retirement of Civil War veterans, with creditable records, with the rank of the next higher grade).
He was elected a director and vice-president of the Aztec Oil Company upon its organization in 1900, and became its president when he retired from the navy. He was a member of the D.C. Commandery of MOLLUS.
His final home was in Washington, DC, where he died May 7, 1923, and buried in Arlington National Cemetery (Section E S Site 0 99).
Prindle was married three times. His first wife was Gertrude A. Stickle, whom he married on 19 May 1864. She bore him seven children, only four of whom survived to adulthood. Gertrude died September 15, 1876. His second wife was Sarah A. Cranston, whom he married on 25 September 1878; she died on April 22, 1892, and is buried in Old Maple Grove Cemetery, Hoosick, N.Y. His third wife was Mrs. Fidelia E. (White) Mead, whom he married on 8 April 1896.
In his will, filed March 14, 1923, Prindle
left his Civil War regalia and his sword to his grandson, Franklin P. Prindle.
PRINDLE, FIDELLA E W/O FRANKLIN C