Carte de visite showing Captain James Sligh of the 1st Michigan Engineers and Mechanics.Sligh enlisted at organization and was commissioned Captain on September 12, 1861 at age 39. He died at Tullahoma, Tennessee, on October 23, 1863 from injuries received in a train derailment by rebel guerillas. He was the only commissioned officer to die from the regiment while in service.
Thank God for Michigan: Stories from the Civil War (June 6 2011 – March 29 2015) Thank God for Michigan was an exhibition developed by the GRPM to commemorate the sesquicentennial of the Civil War. The exhibit featured over 150 artifacts from the GRPM's collection and told the story of the Civil War through the lens of soldiers and civilians from Michigan.
Sligh, Captain James W. James Sligh was born on December 12, 1821 in Ayton, Scotland. His family immigrated to Ontario, Canada, in 1833, and Sligh helped his father on the farm until he moved to Rochester, New York, in 1838. In Rochester, he became a tailor’s apprentice and met Elizabeth Wilson. The couple married on June 29, 1843. Sligh took his wife’s name, just as she had taken his, and called himself James Wilson Sligh from that point onward. Three years after their marriage, James and Elizabeth moved to Grand Rapids, Michigan, where Sligh found work as a tailor. In 1855, he became a member of the dry goods and clothing store Porter, Sligh, and Boyce, later known as simply Porter and Sligh.
When the Civil War broke out, Sligh enlisted at organization and was commissioned Captain on September 12, 1861 at age 39. He died at Tullahoma, Tennessee, on October 23, 1863 from injuries received in a train derailment by rebel guerillas. He was the only commissioned officer from the regiment to die during service.
James Wilson Sligh is the father of Sligh Furniture Company founder, Charles Sligh. James is buried in Fulton Street Cemetery with his family.