Capt. Jacques Adelsheimer was born in Alsace, France, in May 1840. He immigrated to Philadelphia in 1854 and enlisted in the Union Army in 1861, at the start of the Civil War.
As a private in the 27th Regiment of the Pennsylvania Volunteers, Adelsheimer fought in numerous battles, including both battles of Bull Run and the battle of Gettysburg. He was wounded in the right arm during the battle of Chancellorsville. Despite the injury, he stayed in combat and was promoted. His regiment continued into Tennessee and Georgia.
The army honorably discharged the entire regiment in June 1864 after it returned to Philadelphia. Adelsheimer worked in Harrisburg and Altoona until about 1876, when he became an optician in old Allegheny City. He spent the rest of his life in Pittsburgh, raising two daughters and three sons. His family were members of Rodef Shalom Congregation.