Title: Petition of Patience W. Peck, 19 May 1862
Date: May 19, 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.00279
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."
Your Petitioner, Patience W. Peck— of Georgetown D. C. 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 one man, one woman and one girl, all person of African descent of the name of David Nokes, Maria Nokes and Ann Watson for and during the life of said David Nokes, Maria Nokes & Ann Watson and that by said act of Congress said David Nokes, Maria Nokes & Ann Watson are discharged and freed of and from all claim of your petitioner to such service or labor; that at the time of said discharge said David Nokes, Maria Nokes & Ann Watson were of the ages of sixty one, fifty one and fourteen years respectively, and of the personal description following:(1)
- The said David Nokes is very dark color, nearly six feet in height.—Strongly built,—but not fleshy and rather slow but very steady in his movements.
- The said Maria Nokes—the wife of David is not quite so dark in color as her husband, is rather below the medium size and height, is slenderly formed and bends forward as she walks
- The said Ann Watson is not so dark in color as the either of the others, is well grown for her age and quick and active in her movements.—
That your petitioner acquired her claim to the aforesaid service or labor of said persons of African descent in manner following:(2)
- The said David Nokes was purchased by the husband of your petitioner—the late Asa Peck Decd of Louden County Va in the year 1834 for the sum of $625—of Joseph Washington Esq., who gave the said David the privelige of [removing?] with him to the state of Kentucky or of choosing a home in Va— If there is any public record of the title it can be found in the Office of the clerk of the County Court of Louden at Leesburg Va.
- The said Maria Nokes was subject to the claim of your petitioner at the time of her birth, being the child of a woman bequeathed to her in her father's will.
- The said Ann Watson has likewise been subject to the claim of your petitioner from her birth—her mother and grandmother being held under a like claim.—
That your petitioner's claim to the service or labor of said persons of African Descent was, at the time of said discharge therefrom, of the value of about one thousand dollars (viz: David Nokes $300—Maria Nokes $200—and Ann Watson $500.)— in money.(3) Your petitioner makes this estimate of value from the following considerations: viz:
- The said David Nokes is a blacksmith and a trustworthy & reliable man; He was hired for the years 1860 & 1861—as a blacksmith for $20 per month, thus making his annual hire $240.—His general health is good and he is believed to be freer from infermities than persons of his age generally are.
- The said Maria Nokes, is a cook and washerwoman and has done this work for a family of six persons and when released from the claim of your petitioner, readily obtained employment as such at one dollar per week & her board. Her general health however, is not very good. She is of rather a weakly in constitution & is afflicted with the reumatism.
- The said Ann Watson is free from mental & bodily infirmities, and her moral character is as good probably as that of the most of negro girls of her age, and consequently she is as valuable.—Besides the infirmities or defects above mentions your petitioner knows of no other.
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 of African
Descent into the District of Columbia since the
passage of said act of Congress; and that, at the time of the passage thereof,
said persons of African descent 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 of African descent 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 of African descent 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.
Patience W Peck
|20 yds Carpeting||5.00|
|20 ½ yds flannel [illegible]||3.42|
|25 ½ yds lincy [illegible]||2.55|
Know all men by these presents that I Joseph Washington of Fairfax County and state of Virginia for and in consideration of the sum of Six hundred and Twenty five Dollars to me in hand paid by Asa Peck of the County of Loudoun and state of Virginia at and before the sealing and delivery of these presants the receipt whereof I do hearby acknowledge have bargained, sold, granted and confirmed, and by these presents do bargain, sell, grant and confirm to said Asa Peck a certain negro man Slave named David, To have and to hold the said negro Slave, to the only proper use and behoof of the said Asa Peck his Executors, Administrators and Assigns forever. And I the said Joseph H. Washington, for myself my Executors & Administrators, the said negro Slave to the said Asa Peck his Executors Administrators and Assigns, against [me?], the said Joseph H. Washington my Executors, Administrators and Assigns and against all and every other person and persons whosoever shall and will warrant and forever defend, by these presents. In witness whereof I have hereunto set my hand and affixed my seal, this [no handwritten text supplied here] day of February in the year 1834
Joseph H. Washington seal
[Form of the Oath for the Verification of the Petition.]
Washington County, ss.
I, Patience W Peck 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.
Patience W Peck
Sworn to and subscribed before me this 16th day of May A. D. 1862.
Henry Reaver J Peace
Clement A. Peck of Geo. Town DC
John Saunders, Montgomery Co. Md.
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.