Title: Petition of Ann Biscoe, 10 May 1862
Date: May 10, 1862
Source Text: A microfilm reproduction of the original document held at the National Archives and Records Administration, Microcopy 520, Reel 2. The original document is held in the Records of the Accounting Officers of the Department of the Treasury, 1775–1978, National Archives and Records Administration, Record Group 217.6.5. Within the National Archives' Archival Description Catalog, see ARC Identifier 4644616 / MLR Number A1 347 (http://arcweb.archives.gov).
Civil War Washington ID: cww.00165
To the Commissioners under the act of Congress approved the 16th of April, 1862, entitled "An act for the release of certain persons held to service or labor in the District of Columbia."
Washington D. C.
by this her petition in writing, represents
and states, that [no handwritten text supplied here] is a person loyal to the United States,
who, at the time of the passage of the said act of Congress, held a claim to
service or labor against four persons of African descent of the names of
Mary Forrest, Elsie Curtis
Mary Ellen Simms, Marion Curtis
for and during the life of said persons and
that by said act of Congress said persons were
was discharged and freed of and from all claim of your petitioner to
such service or labor; that at the time of said discharge said persons were was of the age of respectively and of the personal description
- Mary Forrest, female, aged 32 years 5 feet 1 ½ inches high, of a delicate make but quite healthy—color black—
- Elsie Curtis, female, aged 29 years 5 feet 2 inches high—stoutly made and able bodied. Color black—
- Maria Ellen Simms—female—aged 25 years, 5 feet 1 ½ inches high likely and robust—color light brown—
- Marion Curtis female, aged 9 years—about 4 ft. 9 inches high delicately made—but lively and healthy—color Mullatto
That your petitioner acquired her claim to the aforesaid service or labor of said persons in manner following:(2)
That your petitioner's claim to the service or labor of said persons was, at the time of said discharge therefrom, of the value of $2625:00/100 dollars in money,(3)
- Mary Forrest valued at $750 00/100 she being a sound faithful and honest servant.
- Elsie Curtis valued at $800.00/100 also sound faithful and honest
- Maria Ellen Simms valued at $800.00/100 also sound faithful and honest
- Marion Curtis valued at $275.00/100 also sound faithful and honest
Your petitioner hereby declares that she bears true and faithful allegiance to the Government of the United States, and that she has not borne arms against the United States in the present rebellion, nor in any way given aid or comfort thereto.
And your petitioner further states and alleges, that she has not brought said persons into
the District of Columbia since the passage of said act of Congress; and that, at
the time of the passage thereof, said persons were
was held to service or labor therein under and by virtue of your
petitioner's claim to such service or labor.
Your petitioner further states and alleges, that her said claim to the service or labor of said persons does not originate in or by virtue of any transfer heretofore made by any person who has in any manner aided or sustained the present rebellion against the Government of the United States.
And your petitioner prays the said Commissioners to investigate and determine the validity of her said claim to the service or labor of said persons herein above set forth; and if the same be found to be valid, that they appraise and apportion the value of said claim in money, and report the same to the Secretary of the Treasury of the United States, in conformity to the provisions of said act of Congress.
said persons were acquired by me under a Bill of Sale from my father Bennett Biscoe to me, which is recorded among the Land Records of said District as per receipt herewith filed will appear.
Recd of Miss Ann Biscoe one dollar for filing and Recording a Bill of sale from Bennett Biscoe dated 20th Instant.
for W. Brent clk
W. Brent clk
Know all men by these presants that I Bennett Biscoe of Washington County District of Columbia for and in consideration of the sum of one hundred dollars currant money to me in hand paid by Ann Biscoe of the County and District afoarsaid the receipt whereof I do hereby acknowledge and the further consideration that she the said Ann Biscoe does and will support me the said Bennett Biscoe during my natural life have given granted sold and confirmed and by these presants do grant bargain sell and confirm unto the said Ann Biscoe the following described property To wit one Negro Girl named Mary aged about nine years one Negro Girl named Alice aged about seven years one Negro Girl named Maria aged about three years Three feather beds beadsteads and bedding one side board one block one secretary and all and singular the goods household stuff and implements and kitchen furnature of every kind that I now have and own in the house owned by and occupied by the said Ann Biscoe To have and to hold the afoarsaid Negroes household stuff and kitchen furnature and every of them by these presants granted bargained sold and confirmed unto the said Ann Biscoe her heirs administrators executors or assigns freely quietly peacably and entirely without any contradiction disturbance or hindrance of any person whatsoever and without any account to me or to any person whatsoever to be made answerd or hereafter to be rendered so that neither I the said Bennet Biscoe nor any other for me or in my name ought to exact challenge claim or demand of in to or from the said Negroes goods household stuff and implements of household and kitchen furnature or any part or parcel thereof but from all actions rights titles Estates claims demands posessions and Interest thereof (except my support above provided for) shall be wholly barred and excluded by force and virtue of these presants and I the said Bennett Biscoe for myself my executors and administrators shall and will warrant and forever defend all and singular the said three Negroes goods household stuff and implements of household and kitchen furnature unto the said Ann Biscoe her heirs executors administrators and assigns against me the said Bennett Biscoe my executors administrators and assigns and against all and every other person and persons whatsoever of which said three Negroes goods household stuff and implements of household and kitchen furnature I the said Bennet Biscoe have put the said Ann Biscoe in full possesion of
In Testimony whereof I have hereunto set my hand and affixt my seal this twentieth day of April one thousand eight hundred and forty
on this twentieth day of April 1840 before the subscriber one of the Justices of the peace in and for the county afoarsaid personally appears Bennet Biscoe and acknowledges the foregoing instrument of writing to be his act and deed for the purpose therein mentioned and for none other
James Marshall J Peace seal
Edward Mattingly J. Peace
[Form of the Oath for the Verification of the Petition.]
Washington County, ss.
I, Ann Biscoe being duly sworn, do depose and say, that all the several matters and things which are set forth and stated in the foregoing petition, as of my own knowledge, are true in substance and in fact; and that all the several other matters and things therein set forth and stated, as from the information of others, I believe to be true in substance and in fact.
Sworn to and subscribed before me this 10th day of May A. D. 1862.
Jas. Cull J. P.
under Emancipation Act—
Robert Coombes on 8th st East
A. B. Grace on East Navy Yard
bet 6 & 7
Note (2.)-- Here state how the claim was acquired, when, from whom, and for what price or consideration; and, if held under any written evidence of title, make exhibit thereof, or refer to the public record where the same may be found.
Note (3.)-- Here state such facts, if any there be, touching the value of the petitioner's claim to the service or labor of the person, as may enhance the same, and also such facts, if any, touching the moral, mental, and bodily infirmities or defects of said person, as impair the value of the petitioner's claim to such service or labor, and conclude such statement with an averment that the petitioner knows of no other infirmities or defects of said person which impair the value of petitioner's claim to such service or labor, and that he believes none other to exist. If the petitioner specify no such infirmity or defect, then his statement touching the value of his claim should conclude with an averment that he has no knowledge of any such infirmity or defect.