Monday, August 31, 2009

Major Moses Bledsoe Corwin Wright.

Major Moses Bledsoe Corwin Wright.
Shown in his Knights Templer uniform.
Date of photo is unknown about 1890's-1902?
Photo provided by Mrs. Stacy Swenson.
Note. This photo can be enlarged by pushing on it.

Mrs. Stacy Swenson, believes that Major Moses Bledsoe Corwin Wright, may be the brother of her Great-grand father Frank M. Wright, who came to S. D., to work at the Cheyenne River Agency school, and she finds the major quite a mystery man. She found he was in the Civil War and was one of the youngest if not the youngest major in the war? He was also member of the Knights Templar.

The 1860, census gives the following information on him:

Name: Moses C Wright
Age in 1860: 17
Birth Year: abt 1843.
Birthplace: Ohio
Home in 1860: Urbana, Champaign, Ohio.
Gender: Male.
Post Office: Urbana.
Household Members: Name Age.
Francis M Wright 49.
Maggie S Wright 21.
Maston R Wright 19.
Moses C Wright 17.
Sally T Wright 12.
Frank M Wright 4.
Rebeca Shelton 22.

Mrs. Stacy Swenson, has been able piece together some information from bits and pieces, she has found like the following:

From The Washington Post.

Gettysburg's Hero.

General Hancock's Remains May Be Removed to Arlington.

The veterans af the Second Army Corps held their last meeting of the season at Willard's Hotel last night, and over a hundred members were present when President James G. Brady called the gathering to order. Corp. James Tanner was elected a member, and Col. Moses B. C. Wright and Mr. Joseph Brady honorary members. The corps decided to visit the studio of Sculptor Ellicott in a body tomorrow night and view the completed equestrian statue of General Hancock to be exhibited there.

A committee consisting of General Bachelder, General Brady, Gen. Joseph S. Smith and Maj. George A. Armes was appointed to take charge of the matter of having the remains of General Hancock removed from their present resting-place at Xorristowu, Pa., to Arlington Cemetery. Major Armes stated that this would be in accordance with the wishes of the late hero's family. The body of Mrs. Hancock, which now reposes at St. Louis, will also be reinterred at Arlington.

After the business of the meeting was concluded social features of an interesting and delightful character wer enjoyed, Civil Service Commissioner Lyman telling some good war stories and Dr. Charles Smart reading a valuable paper on "The Surgeons of the Second Corps." Major Armes read an original order issued during the Revolution by General Washington, in which he called attention to the habit of the off1cers of swearing, and strongly suggesting a cessation of the reprehensible practice. He also ordered that no work should be performed on the Sabbath. Gen. J. S. Smith and others contributed to the pleasure of the assemblage with reminiscences, and the meeting adjourned until next October.


Mrs. Stacy, grandmother Belva Wright Seaman had a brother named after him from California. He went by Corwin Wright, and he was born in S.D. Now she has a lot battle reports about Moses Bledsoe Corwin Wright, but has little information on his family or his family live, which she dearly love to have.

Those of you who have information on Major Moses Bledsoe Corwin Wright, can write to Mrs. Stacy directly by using the following address, she will be glad to hear from one and all with any kind of information on him.


New York Times, October 14, 1902.

Major M. B. C. Wright died suddenly at Washington Saturday. He was a native of Ohio and was sixty years of age. At the time of his death he held a position on the board of review in the United States pension office. Major Wright bore the distinction of having been the youngest major in the volunteer service during the war of the rebellion.
Arlington National Cemetery Virginia.


When Mrs. Stacy Swenson, first came to me asking for help, I thought “No Problem”, as my field is military. Will after using up all my index’s and hunting other sites I was unable to find much on him. Oh I found he was a Major on the field and staff of the Kansas second Indian Home Guards, but was unable to find him on any rosters of the Indian Home Guards, even doing a full search of the Kansas Adjutant General report brought no results. I was able to find some battle reports about him which you can read after this statement. Now I know she should find something at the National Archives, but she like the most of us in these times find it hard to part with hard earn money for information she may or may not find useful.

I decided to put up this page to help her, as I know there are others interested in him as well. I also know there are family members out there that have information on him also. It is my hope that anyone that has information on Moses Bledsoe Corwin Wright, will write to Mrs. Swenson, and let her know what you have she would be most appreciative for any information she will receive. She will in turn let me know so I may post it here so others who are interested in him can enjoy the information as well.


SIR: I had entertained hopes that the whole force detailed to my command could have rejoined the brigade previous to my report, but as I do not deem it proper longer to delay report, I proceed to state further the result of the expedition:

After the battle of Sunday, the 17th ultimo, I proceeded with the forces in my command to the west side of Grand River, in order to make connection with the portion of my command under Major Foreman. I found that Major Foreman had fallen back above Alberty's and having sent for them, I sent scouts in every direction to watch the enemy. Learning that the regiment of Colonel McIntosh had been stationed between the Verdigris and Arkansas, I proceeded with my whole force and artillery to cut him off. I was prevented from taking him by the order of Colonel Cooper, the commander of the rebel forces in Fort Davis, who ordered all the rebel forces on the north side of the Arkansas to recross to the southern side to prevent us from cutting them off in detail. I learned that Colonel was desirous of exchanging prisoners, but deemed it inexpedient to offer a transfer until I had joined your command.

I was informed that the rebels estimated their loss at the affair of Bayou Bernard at 125 men. Besides Colonel Taylor, Captain Hicks (a Cherokee) and 2 Choctaw captains were killed.

The command of Major Foreman had encamped on the old campground on Grand River on the day of the fight, 20 miles distant from the scene of conflict. In the evening the regiment of Colonel Stand Watie, under Majors Boudinot and Buster, got in his rear, and so he was uncertain as to the numbers and position of the enemy, and as the Creeks under his command refused to fight and proposed to forsake him, he prudently fell back to secure the artillery and keep his command together. Lieutenant Scott and some Wichitas, having left his command to return to your headquarters, were taken prisoners by Major Buster. Those are the only prisoners taken from any portion of my command in this expedition that I know of.

Failing to take Colonel McIntosh's command, i sent forward a portion of my command to the Creek Agency Ford. There small earthworks were discovered, but the few men holding it abandoned it and fled.

I remained facing the enemy for two days, but finding that he would not venture to cross the river to attack us, and as our provisions were exhausted and my men had been on half rations for four or five days, I fell back to Wolf Creek, but found that all the forces had fallen back.

Leaving my forces at Wolf Creek, with orders to march up in the morning, I proceeded with Major Wright to your quarters. On the way I tendered part of my command, or the whole of it, to Colonel Cloud, whom I met on the way. He declined it, but subsequently, I learn, took some 250 or 300 men with him to Park Hill. He has sent me no notification of this proceeding.

I have sent orders to have the absent portion of my command rejoin us, desire, if possible, to remain here until they can reach us, as I believe the interests of the regiment demand that it be not divided at the present moment.

Major Wright, of the Second Indian, joined my command at the old camp on Grand River on the 29th ultimo with a re-enforcement of 200 men. I have to acknowledge his efficient aid and soldierly bearing in rather a trying situation.

We brought a large quantity of stock from the face of the enemy. Some of the cattle in the herd belong to our Cherokee soldiers and have not yet been separated. Believing that the remainder of them would be amply sufficient to supply the Indian Brigade for months to come and save the Government a great expense, I respectfully urge that they be retained as a herd for that purpose, and not sold to speculators at a nominal price to the prejudice of the Government.

A large number of refugee Indians and their families are following the retreating army for protection, having exposed themselves to the fury of the rebels by declaring for the Union. To aid in supporting these people this herd can be usefully employed even while it sustains the army. Impressed with the importance and stern necessity of this matter, I respectfully protest against any disposal of this stock that would defeat so praiseworthy a bestowal of it.

I remain, very respectfully,
Major, Commanding Third Regiment Indian Home Guard.

Report of Colonel John Ritchie, Second Indian Home Guard (Kansas).

HEADQUARTERS CAMP C. M. CLAY, On Cow Creek, September 21, 1862-11 a. m.

SIR: Yesterday morning, at about 8 o'clock, our picket guard was fired upon, and a regular stampede of 1,500 women and children crowded into camp for protection, making a Bull Run retreat. Everything seemed to partake of the spirit, but only a moment after orders were given every man was ready for any emergency. My infantry, or those who had no horses, mostly gave the war-whoop and rushed in the direction of the firing of the pickets, which were closely pursued. Soon after a most terrific fire was commenced, and resulted in the rout of the enemy. Soon I was informed that our forces were about to be surrounded.

I immediately put out companies to avoid anything of that kind. After putting a suitable guard around our supply train and camp I marched to the scene of conflict. Before starting over I had ordered Major Wright to pass around, and if possible to surround the party. Upon arriving upon the battle ground I saw the enemy's flag waving, bidding us defiance, and that they were drawn up in line of battle. I ordered my infantry to conceal themselves in a ravine, and I would take a party of cavalry and try to drive them in close to the timber. Seeing Major Wright's party already in view,

I took about 100 men and advanced near enough to draw them out, but no farther than to leave them upon high ground. I instantly ordered everything forward, and such another skedaddling could not have been beaten only by the women and children in the morning, and that only because they were more in number. I felt that everything depended upon our success, and was determined to drive them or die. We took and killed their flag-bearer and took their vile flag; killed 2 officers certain, and can count 20 of their dead. We slept upon the battle ground, and at sunrise this morning marched to this point, where I had ordered my train. At the same time ordered a company to bring in their of cattle.

Our loss in killed is from 12 to 20, including Captain George Scraper, of Company H, who fell bravely at the head of his men, and 9 wounded. Two negro teamsters and 1 six-mule team were taken while out foraging.

Taking all the circumstances connected with my command I cannot close this report without feeling grateful to God for his goodness in our means, faith, and works. Do send us supplies and re-enforcements. Again I ask you to send me artillery. I could have made good use of it yesterday. Papers show that Irwin's and Jackman's men wee in the rebel force; others show Stand Waite's and Livingston's, but nothing reliable as to who they are. Their force has been estimated at from 300 to 4,000.

If I am thought incompetent to defend my Indians for God's sake have me removed, as I do not intend to resign in the face of the enemy. As Colonel Corwin and Major Wright have both resigned, see that their places are filled at the earliest possible moment. You can get us supplies here before we suffer if you use due diligence, and this humanity calls for.

I am, general, your humble servant,
JOHN RITCHIE, Colonel, Commanding Second Indian Regiment and Detachment.

In the Field, Camp Bentonville, March 3, 1863.

General BLUNT:

SIR: The forces in the district are at present located as follows: Third Brigade, Army of the Frontier, her; First, Second, and Third [Regiments], except two companies, at Fort Blunt, near Fort Wayne; five companies of Third Indian at Neosho, Mo., and one company of First at Waters' Mill.

The Third Battalion Tenth Illinois was gone to Cassville, under some telegraphic orders from Schofield, no notice being sent me. I stopped them until some order in proper shape, and through the proper channel, had been sent, but they got out of the district before I had notice or time. At the post Fayetteville is the First Arkansas Cavalry, in poor condition; First Arkansas Infantry, 400 present, absent, sick, &c., and a battery (50 men without guns), the latter two forces being of no consequence at present. The whole effective force is not there; is not as great as it appears on paper. I send you a consolidated report of the district. I have now one company mounted at Dripping Springs as an outpost, 12 miles from Van Buren. I have a company on the head of Lee's Creek (Indians), and Captain McCoy First Arkansas) on the Cave Creek road. I have a companies out on White River. These are outposts. I have been cleaning out the bushwhackers in this country with considerable success. Getting it clear.

I have had to watch the flank of my forces, as Marmaduke might return, perhaps with Brooks' command, in that way, as there is forage on White River. Here I have had to work all my forces hard. Forage is scarce (almost exhausted). I do not think I can get more than eight or ten days' more in Northwestern Arkansas, even by hauling it from 20 to 30 miles. Hard on the stock. My design was to move on the Arkansas River by the 5th. I would have started yesterday to the Illinois, where I have found wheat enough for twenty days' bread, but a telegram from General Curtis stopped me. I wish to urge on you the necessity of going forward immediately to the valley of the Arkansas. There will be grass enough there in ten days for ponies, and I could in a few days haul the wheat to Hildebrand's Mill.

I wanted a train of 200 wagons, so that I would have five days' rations. If I cannot get them I had determined to go anyhow. The trains would bring so much; the wheat I will haul to Hildebrand's Mill will do some more, and I thought I would rather go on half rations and beef than let the enemy organize the Indians south of the river. If we do not organize them immediately the enemy will.

If we had means, we could organize a Creek and Choctaw regiment. If we do not, we must fight these men this summer. While I will be willing to attempt it, with the limited means I have, let me again appeal earnestly to you that its success to a great extent depends on our clothing them neatly, feeding them, and to some extent their starving families. After all, a little goes a great way. It is cheap recruiting. I have sent eight trains at different times into the Indian Nation this winter loaded with flour and meal I made in this country. Its effect has been most happy, in addition to its humanity. The rebels are alarmed, and are trying the same game. I intended to make a dash on their corn boats. I sent 800 men on the three boats that went up, but Colonel Harrison (against my positive instructions) sent them around 110 miles, instead of going straight through to Osage, as I imperatively ordered. T he result was that Major Wright (Second Indian), Foreman (Third Indian), and Haynes (First Arkansas) unanimously voted to come back when they got in belly- deep mud on White River. I was deeply mortified, and would have gone with the party in person, but it was utterly unwise to have the scattered forces here and at Fayetteville so long.

Let me urge you to have me authorized to go forward. I will risk it, and rather burn up my old wagons in attempting it than let the enemy get foothold in the Arkansas Valley this spring. If I have to stay here, I have no forage, and if I dump down 100 wagon- loads of commissary stores, I cannot move. I will do the best I can, but ask to be allowed to send all my train to Gibson, while I make a demonstration on the river and rake the river.
I have the honor to remain, your obedient servant,

Colonel, Commanding.

Numbers 3. Report of Major Moses B. C. Wright, Second Indian Home Guard.

Fort Gibson, Cherokee Nation, February 27, 1864.

LIEUTENANT: I have the honor to report that, in obedience to instructions from your headquarters, dated January 27, 1864, I proceeded to Cane Hill and Rhea's Mills, Ark., arriving there on the 29th, for the purpose of supplying the command with flour and foraging the stock. I found soon after arriving there that Captain Buchanan with part of his company of guerrillas had crossed the Arkansas from below and was then in the mountains near Cane Hill, but was unable to get any definite information of his whereabouts, until on the night of the 8th of February he dashed into the command at Rhea's Mills and wounded 2 men.

The next morning a party was started in pursuit, who, after following them through he mountains all day come upon them, when a skirmish ensued, which resulted in killing 3 of the rebels and slightly wounding their captain. After this affair they remained very quiet, concealed in the mountains, until on the night of the 20th instant they came in near Cane Hill, and stole a Government horse out of the corral. Upon making this discovery, I started Sergt. Henry Scraper, in command of a party, in pursuit, who after following them over the mountains about 15 miles, overtook them on the side of a steep bluff, where they had halted to rest their stock. Scraper halted and formed his men, when he charged them, completely routing them, killing Captain Buchanan and 3 of his men, besides capturing their horses, arms, saddles, bridles, blankets, clothing, &c. I captured altogether 8 horses, 3 Enfield rifles, 2 Mississippi rifles, 1 Sharps carbine, and Colt navy revolvers, together with the saddles, bridles, &c., above mentioned.

On Thursday, the 25th instant, I received orders to turn over my command to Major Charles Willettts, Fourteenth Kansas Cavalry, and report in person to your headquarters, where I arrived yesterday after an absence of thirty days.

I have the honor to remain, lieutenant, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
Major Second Indian Regiment, Commanding Detachment.

U. S. Forces, Indian Territory.
Numbers 2. Itinerary of the Indian Brigade.

February 1, 1864,Battalion of infantry, under Major Wright, marched to Rhea's Mills, 65 miles, to run mills and get forage and breadstuff. Commands from the First Indian Regiment, Colonel Wattles; Third Indian, Major Foreman; battalion Fourteenth Kansas Cavalry, Major Willetts; section of Kaufman's howitzers. Captain Kaufman, with the commanding officer, marched southward across Arkansas River; reached Hillabee after a march of 75 miles.

In the latter part of January, 1864, Brigadier-General John McNeil, commanding the District of the Frontier at Fort Smith, directed Colonel W. A. Phillips, commanding the Federal Indian Brigade at Fort Gibson, to take as many of his troops as could be spared from that point, and advance as far in the direction of Red River as practicable, for the purpose of preventing the reorganization of the Southern Indians; to disperse such bodies of them as were still holding together; and to distribute the President's proclamation offering peace and pardon to those who should immediately return to their treaty obligations.

After the necessary preparation, Colonel Phillips left Fort Gibson, on the 1st of February, on the proposed expedition, his command consisting of part of the First Indian Regiment, under Colonel S. H. Wattles; a battalion of the Third Indian, under a field-officer of that regiment; a battalion of the Fourteenth Kansas Cavalry, under Major Charles Willetts, and a section of mounted howitzers, under Captain Sol. Kaufman—in all, about one thousand men. The frost was hardly out of the ground from the hard freezing of the past winter when he started, so that the road was very heavy for the train which he was obliged to take along carrying his subsistence and ammunition. He pushed forward in a southwest direction, and from the 5th to the 8th had skirmishes every day with the Southern Indians and Texans south of the Canadian River, dispersing and pursuing them until he arrived at Middle Boggy. At this place the Confederates made a stand, and, attacking them vigorously, he routed them after a sharp action of less than half an hour, and pursued them towards Red River. In this fight he reported forty-nine of the Confederate dead left on the field. In their flight towards Red River after the fight, they broke up into small detachments, and he was unable to overtake them.

He continued his march south, however, to the vicinity of old Fort Arbuckle, whence, after a short halt, he started on the return march to Fort Gibson. On this return inarch, he sent out his mounted force so as to sweep the country of small parties of Southern Indians for a distance of from fifty to sixty miles on either flank. He also improvised an ox train, and collected all the corn that could be found in the country, and brought it along with his other train, guarded by his infantry and artillery. He addressed a letter to the Governor of the Choctaw Nation, and a letter to each of the head men of the Chickasaw and Seminole Nations, reminding them of the terrible punishment he had just inflicted upon their forces; pointed out to them the folly and wickedness of their continued hostility to the Government, and warned them of the dire consequences that would certainly follow if they neglected to accept the President's offer of peace and pardon.

His expedition certainly had the effect of producing consternation among the hostile Chickasaws, Creeks, and Seminoles, and those who did not flee into the Wichita Mountains or to Red River declared that they would not again take up arms against the Federal Government. The expedition also had the effect of postponing the reorganization of the Southern Indian forces, which General Maxey desired should take place before his troops advanced north from the Red River Valley in the opening of the spring campaign.

On returning to Fort Gibson the latter part of February, from his expedition into the southern part of the Indian Territory, Colonel Phillips directed Major Willetts, commanding a battalion, Fourteenth Kansas Cavalry, to relieve Major M. B. C. Wright, Third Indian Regiment, at Rhea's Mills, Arkansas, who had been at that place the past month, with a battalion of his regiment, collecting wheat and corn to make into flour and meal for the Indian command at Fort Gibson. The mounted part of Major Wright's command was also kept busy in operating against the Southern partisan bands of that section, who had become quite bold under a leader known as Captain Buchanan. After dashing into the command at Rhea's Mills one night and wounding two men, the guerillas were pursued by a detachment of Federal Indians, under Sergeant Scraper, and overtaken on the side of a steep bluff in the mountains where they had halted to rest, and in the fight that took place, six of them were killed, including Captain Buchanan, and their arms and equipments and part of their stock captured and brought back to camp.


Editor Stacy said...

Thank you so very much Dennis for your help in locating more information on MCB Wright. As the years pass, family oral histories fade from memory and are buried with those who cherish them. So, I am left with little resource in which to piece together a history. I look forward to learning more with others that use your website. I will be happy to pass along any info I currently have about Moses. Thanks again!! Stacy

Editor Stacy said...

I am happy to report that because of this site MCB's great grandaughter contacted me a week ago. We are both enjoying the shared knowledge!