Photo and Notes courtesy of Jane Peyrouse
Benjamin Wright is presumed to be wearing his Naval Academy cadet uniform in this photo
He was born in 1867, Memphis TN, and died on June 7, 1903 in St. Louis MO.
He married Daisy Lucas (born 1863) on Jan 10, 1900 in Marshall County, MS. She was the daughter of Fielding Lucas and Elvira P. Brackin (Elvira died April 25, 1926).
His headstone reads: Benjamin, son of Gen. Marcus and Spencer Elcan Wright, age 37 years, Lt. in the US Navy, Graduated US Naval Academy 1885, Three years on Adm. Franklin's Flag Ship, Served with Dewey at Manilla. Died June 7, 1903. Gr. Grandson of John Wright, Captain GA Line Rev. War 1776-1783. Grandson of Benjamin Wright, Major 39th Infantry, USA 1814-15, son of Gen. Marcus J. Wright, CSA 1861-1865.
Benjamin's widow later lived in Holly Springs, MS, along with other kin including Ida Brackin Meyers and her mother, Mrs. E.P. Lucas.
Information regarding Brig. Gen. Marcus Wright:
Brig. Gen. Marcus Wright was the first cousin of Jane's g-gf, John J. Harton of AR.
Brig. Gen. Marcus Wright is buried in Arlington National Cemetery, one of two Confederate generals so honored.
Arlington National Cemetery, Arlington, Virginia
#NC-10110-MM - Notecards
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Dedicated June 5, 1914 -- Arlington National Cemetery
"A Gift to the Nation" from the United Daughters of the Confederacy
In 1900 General Marcus J. Wright proposed the legislation that allowed Confederate soldiers to be buried in Arlington National Cemetery. Secretary of War William Howard Taft supported a 1906 petition from the United Daughters of the Confederacy to erect a monument in the center of the Confederate section and the cornerstone was laid on November 12, 1912. Sir Moses Jacob Ezekiel, a VMI cadet and internationally-recognized sculptor, was chosen to create the memorial to the Southern soldiers. After raising the money to erect the monument, the UDC presented it to President Woodrow Wilson who accepted it as a "gift to the nation" on June 4, 1914.
The 32-1/2-foot-high bronze stands as the tallest bronze sculpture in Arlington. The heroic-sized figure of the woman atop the monument, her head crowned with olive leaves, represents the South. Her left hand holds a laurel wreath, remembering her fallen sons; her right hand holds a pruning hook on a plow stock. She stands on a plinth embossed with four cinerary urns symbolizing the four years of the War. The coats-of-arms of the thirteen Confederate States and of Maryland, depicted on fourteen inclined shields, comprise a frieze supporting the plinth. Another frieze below the plinth is of life-sized figures portraying gods of mythology and soldiers of each branch of the Confederate service. Six vignettes of Southern families complete the frieze. The seal of the Confederacy and four inscriptions surround the base.
As he wished, Sir Moses J. Ezekiel is buried at the base of the monument to the left. General Marcus Wright is buried at the front base of the monument. Over 450 Confederate soldiers, wives, and civilians are buried around the base.
INSCRIBED ON THE BACK OF THE MONUMENT:
"Not for fame or reward, not for place or for rank,
Not lured by ambition, or goaded by necessity
But in simple obedience to duty, as they understood it,
These men suffered all, sacrificed all, dared all . . . and died."
--The Rev. Dr. Randolph H. McKim, D.D.
Marcus Wright wrote a number of biographies: "Life of William Blount", "Sketch of the Life of Gen John Peter Gabriel Muhlenberg", "Life of General Winfield Scott", "Life of General Robert E. Lee", "Life of Edward Augustus, Duke of Kent" (father of Queen Victoria).
Funeral services were held at his home 1743 Corcoran Street, NW, Washington D. C. Among his pallbearers were Sen. Kenneth McKellar of Tennessee, Sen. John Sharp Williams of Mississippi, Sen. William J. Harris of Georgia, Sen. John K. Shields of Tennessee, Capt. Frederick Bell, commander of Confederate Veterans of Washington (All Honorary). Active pallbearers were Frank Lyon, Col. George F. Baltzell, R. E. Yallott, Col. H. C. Smither, Daniel S. Gordon, and Dr. Leroy Hyde. [Info found in Southern Historical Collection, Folder 4, Box 1.]
During the Civil War he served as Major and Adjutant of brigade consisting of 107th and 108th Regiments of Tennessee Militia, Lieutenant Colonel of 154th Tennessee Regiment Infantry, 1862, Assistant Adjutant General with rank of Lieutenant Colonel, 1862, Colonel, taking command of 154th Tennessee Regiment at Battle of Shiloh, Brigadier General, December 13, 1862. He was Military Governor of Columbus, Kentucky, 3 February to March 1862, at McMinnville, TN, Sept to Dec 1863, Assigned to command Hanson's Kentucky Brigade, 17 Jan 1863, which he relinquished February 3 to command Donelson's Brigade. Commander of Post at Atlanta, Georgia, 1864, Commander of Post at Macon, Georgia, 1864. Brigade composed of the 8th, 25th, 16th, 38th, 51st and 52 Regiments of Tennessee Infantry and Carnes' Battery of Light Artillery; also Steuben Artillery and Murray's Battery of Artillery, Cheatham's Division, Polk's Corps, Army of Tennessee, February 3, 1865 until the end of the war. He participated in the Battles of Belmont, Shiloh, Chickamauga, Missionary Ridge and Perryville. Paroled at Grenada, Mississippi, 1865.
For over 30 years General Wright was Agent of the War Department for the collection of Confederate Records. He was appointed to this position 1 July 1878. He was author of "Tennessee in the War 1861-5"; "General officers of the Confederate Army", "Members of the Confederate Congress"; "History of McNairy County, Tennessee". He was President of the Southern History Society and active in the Sons of the American Revolution.
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