Pvt. Solomon Canright
Solomon Canright was born in Ulster Co. New York, January 31, 1842 and was 4 years of age when he moved with his father to Wisconsin. On 23 August 1862 he enlisted for service in the Civil War entering Co. A, Twenty-eighth, Wisconsin Volunteer Infantry. Pvt. Canright had two other brothers who also served in the Civil War. One was John Emery Canright, who enlisted in Co. I, First Minnesota Heavy Artillery.
Solomon Canright participated in the Battle of Helena, in the capture of Little Rock, in an expedition from Pine Bluff and in the battles of New Orleans, Mobile and Spanish Fort. On 20 February 1865, Before leaving for Mobile with his regiment, Canight wrote in his diary that "he was ordered to send everything home but what we are going to carry with us. I am going to send a few things and among them this book so this will be the last I will write in it." His diary also included notes such as a list of uniform prices that soldiers paid for their clothing. At the close of the war the 28th Wisconsin was on duty at Brownsville, Texas. When the regiment was mustered out in August 1865, he had been off duty not once during his 3 years service. Mr Canright then remained at home until 1868 when he came to Minnesota and taught school several winters.
In the spring of 1888 he located on his farm of 200 acres, then prairie land, at Truman, Minnesota.
Solomon Canright died at his home in Truman on Monday, July 22, (1918?). He was survived by his wife and a married son in Wyoming. Funeral services were held at Truman and burial was in Fairmont Cemetery. G.A.R. veterans were in charge of the burial service.
Transcript of a page from an undated letter** from Solomon Canright to his sister:
Way down on the banks of the Coldwater (River) in the state of Miss, Mr. Carver died last Tuesday. He had been sick ever since we started for the (Yazoo) Pass. If he had lived a week longer he would have got his discharge and been sent home.
You wanted to know if I ever got homesick. I think I can truly say that that I have not seen an hours homesickness since I left Wis. I made up my mind before I enlisted never to be homesick and I think I have succeeded very well.
You said we were engaged in a glorious cause and if each one did his duty that peace would soon be restored throughout our land. I think if every private in the army should do his duty, as long as they have to be pulled round by traitors and cowards just so long will we have war and commotion in the land. I have about given up all hopes of this war ever ending. When I see the way the war is carried on I wonder we have not been ruined long ago. The Adjunct Gen. has been off at Helena the last week trying to raise a Negro Regt. He has got two companys formed already. I think that is a very good plan. The darkies are no better to fight than we are and I think it a good plan to make them fight if they wont without makeing(?)
Well I guess I have written all that will be interesting to you so I will close. Give my love to all.
From your brother, Solly.
P. S. That kiss you send had all evaporated before your letter reached me. I send you a couple hoping they may meet with better success than yours did.
** There was a Samuel Carver in Company A who died on April 9, 1863 at Helena, Arkansas. Solomon made a reference to Mr. Carver being sick "ever since we started for the Pass" and that reference would be to the Yazoo Pass Expedition. The 28th Wisconsin returned from that adventure on April 5, 1863, shortly before this letter would have been written, if I am correct that these are the same two Carvers. So I think it is a fair assumption that this letter was written in mid-April 1863. That would also be about the time that the first black regiments were being recruited by the Union Army, as he wrote of in the letter.
Information contributed by Joanne Bergen