In 2009, a construction project along Columbia Pike 2.5 miles south of here unearthed human bone fragments, in an area that was part of the Franklin battlefield. Forensic anthropologists determined that these were the remains of a Civil War soldier. Also found among the remains were six Union tunic buttons and a Minie ball, although it was impossible to verify conclusively if the soldier was Union or Confederate. Accordingly, he was designated an Unknown Civil War Soldier, an American who had died for his country. He is buried here at the center of Rest Haven Cemetery.
On Oct. 10, 2009, the community of Franklin honored this Unknown Civil War Soldier with a period military funeral at St. Peter's Episcopal Church. After the service, a horse-drawn caisson and honor guard carried the coffin here. Several thousand spectators and national media were in attendance, as scores of reenactors conduced a burial, and upon the grave they poured soil from the 18 states represented at the Battle of Franklin. Also present were two actual sons and daughters of Civil War veterans.
Marking the grave are original column sections from the Tennessee State Capitol (1856), which now stand in remembrance of all unknown soldiers of the American Civil War. May these fallen soldiers rest in peace.