Title: Petition of Achsah Dorsey, 14 May 1862
Date: May 14, 1862
Source Text: A microfilm reproduction of the original document held at the National Archives and Records Administration, Microcopy 520, Reel 3. 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.00214
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."
Anne Arundle Co.
by this her
petition in writing, represents and states, that she 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 a colored girl, then in the
employment of Rev. B Peyton Brown, of Washington
City; taken there about the middle of March last a person of African descent of the name of
during the life of said
untill said Georgeana Bacon should arrive at the age
of twenty years; at which time she will be free by a deed of manumission
executed by myself and now on record in Md
that by said act of Congress said
Bacon is discharged and freed of and from all claim of
your petitioner to such service or labor; that at the time of said discharge
Georgeana Bacon was of
the age of thirteen years and six months and of
the personal description following:(1)
Bright Mulatto; likely; black hair, quite straight and
glossy, about five feet high (quite tall for her age) spare, and somewhat stooped in the sholders.
That your petitioner acquired her claim to the aforesaid service or labor of said girl Georgeana Bacon in manner following:(2) Born in her service; of her slave woman, Maria; whom she has since manumitted, and is now a free woman in Maryland .
That your petitioner's claim to the service or labor of said Georgiana Bacon was, at the time of said discharge therefrom, of the value of Three hundred and sixty dollars $360.00 in money.(3) Your petitioner has here estimated the value of said girl for the next three years at thirty-six dollars per year: and for the following three, when she could do the full work of a woman, Eighty-four dollars per year—the amount servants are now bringing in Washington.
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 Georgeana Bacon into the District of Columbia since the passage of said act of Congress; and that, at the time of the passage thereof, said Georgeana Bacon 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 the said claim to the service or labor of said Georgeana Bacon 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 Georgeana Bacon 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.
[Form of the Oath for the Verification of the Petition.]
Washington County, ss.
I, Achsah Dorsey 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 8 day of May A. D. 1862.
S G Welsh J P
Mrs. H H. Brown
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.