Solomon served with the 16th Virginia Infantry, Company D. He entered the war as a Second Lieutenant, eventually was promoted to a Captain. For a number of months he actually was the top commanding officer of Company D while his superior officers were indisposed.
On April 9, 1865 he was at Appomattox Courthouse, and signed the surrender papers. First is part of the first page of several that I receive when I obtained a copy of this document.
(Remember, by clicking on the grahic you can see a larger version.)
The printed portion of this graphic reads:
We, the undersigned Prisoners of War, belonging to the Army of Northern Virginia, having been this day surrendered by General Robert E. Lee, C.S. A., Commanding said Army, to Lieut. Genl. U.S. Grant, Commanding Armies of the United States, do hereby give our solemn parole of honor that we will not hereafter serve in the armies of the Confederate States, or in any military capacity whatever, against the United States of America, or render aid to the enemies of the latter, until properly exchanged, in such manner as shall be mutually approved by the respective authorities.
Done at Appomattox Court House, Va., this 9th day of April 1865.
Solomon's signature appears on this graphic, the last signature:
After the war, Solomon married Sarah (Sallie) Anne Darden.
Solomon B. Eley died April 21 1871 in Sussex County, Virginia from consumption, his remains were taken back to Isle of Wight County Virginia for burial, however, his burial place remains undiscovered.
Because the family had a photo (original format unknown) of Solomon and could prove he was at the Courthouse on the day of surrender, his photo has been placed on the Wall of Honor at the Appomattox Courthouse. This photo was taken a number of years ago, slightly out of focus, but, there he is (lower left corner).
Someday we shall chat about this photo and his uniform. I wrote about Solomon in my post of September 11, 2009, Ancestor Military Battles, Solomon B. Eley, where I first shared the documents and his story.
Solomon's photo, with that of his wife, Sallie, hang in my home, a constant reminder of my family and their stories.
Copyright 2010, CABS for Reflections From the Fence.