Solomon Turner was born about 1843 in Pennsylvania. He may have been the son of Nancy and Solomon Turner, or the son of Frances Bailey.
1870, 1880: Laborer
1880: 97 Logan Street, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania with his sister Elizabeth Gibson, mother Frances Bailey and the Gibson children: Frances, Kate, Charles, Robert, David, and Charlotte
1870: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania with 53-year-old cook Francis Baily and the Brown family (William & Ann, and their children Imogien, Matilda, Albertta, Mary, and Ellen)
1863: Lancaster County, Pennsylvania (military enlistment)
1850: Lancaster, Pennsylvania with his (presumed) mother Nancy Turner, and the Edgerly family (including his future comrade-at-arms, William Edgerly of Co. D)
During the Civil War, he served as a Private in Company D of the 54th Massachusetts Volunteer Infantry of the Union Army, the first regiment in the United States made up entirely of enlisted men of color. He was about 22 years old, single and working as a farmer when he enlisted on 19 March 1863 in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania. Mustered out 20 August 1865 with his regiment.
He may have been the brother of Private John J. Turner, who also served in Company D.
"United States Registers of Enlistments in the U.S. Army, 1798-1914," index and images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.1.1/QJDR-M9SC : accessed 02 Jun 2014), Solomon Turner, 04 Jan 1867; citing p. 195, volume 067, Philadelphia, , Pennsylvania, United States, NARA microfilm publication M233, roll 34, National Archives and Records Administration, Washington D.C.; FHL microfilm 350340. This record shows that Solomon re-enlisted in the U.S. Army after the Civil War and was discharged at Goldsboro, North Carolina on the grounds of disability on 26 August 1868.
"United States Civil War Soldiers Index, 1861-1865," index, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.1.1/F9TS-M4Q : accessed 02 Jun 2014), Solomon turner, 1861-1865; citing military unit 54th Regiment, Massachusetts Infantry (Colored), Union Soldier, NARA microfilm publication M544, roll 41 (Washington D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, n.d); FHL microfilm 881910.
"United States Civil War Service Records of Union Colored Troops, 1863-1865," index, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.1.1/JZ6F-2M9 : accessed 02 Jun 2014), Solomon Turner, 1863; citing "Compiled Military Service Records of Volunteer Union Soldiers Who Served with the United States Colored Troops: 1st through 5th United States Colored Cavalry, 5th Massachusetts Cavalry (Colored), 6th United States Colored Cavalry," Fold3.com; military unit 54th Massachusetts Infantry, Tucker-Wentworth, NARA microfilm publication M1898, roll 17.
"United States Census, 1860," index, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.1.1/MXPS-T36 : accessed 02 Jun 2014), S Turner in household of F Barley, The 6th Ward Pittsburgh, Allegheny, Pennsylvania, United States; citing "1860 U.S. Federal Census - Population," Fold3.com; p. 590, household ID 5263, NARA microfilm publication M653; FHL microfilm 805059.