Title: Petition of Ann Briscoe, 21 May 1862
Date: May 21, 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.00348
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, Ann Briscoe of Washington 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 Matilda Easton a person of African descent, and also the following persons of African descent of the names of Nelly Ann Easton, Floreed Easton, Mary Easton & Fanny Easton for and during the life of said Matilda, Nelly Ann, Floreed, Mary and Fanny Easton and that by said act of Congress said Matilda, Nelly Ann, Floreed, Mary and Fanny Easton 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 Matilda was 32 years old, Nelly Ann 31 years, Floreed 14 years, Mary 9 years & Fanny of the age of Eight years and of the personal description following:(1)
- Matilda is 5 feet 6 inches high, dark complexion, large features, ordinary size—
- Nelly Ann is five feet 8 inches high, Copper Colored, large features, thin face. Ordinary size—
- Floreed is 5 feet 2 inches high, light Mulatto, small black Eyes, good features, pleasing bright countenance. She is the daughter of the above named Nelly Ann.
- Mary is about 4 feet 4 inches high very dark small features, good countenance. ordinary size for her age.
- Fanny is about 4 feet high, Copper Colored, good countenance, ordinary size for one of her age.
That your petitioner acquired her claim to the aforesaid service or labor of said servants in manner following:(2) That she inherited the Mother of said Matilda & Nelly Ann, (Louisa Easton who is now dead) from the Estate of her Father the late Doctor Edward Briscoe of Charles County Maryland in 1815 and she continued to own her until her (Louisa's) death last winter.
That your petitioner's claim to the service or labor of said Matilda Easton was, at the time of said discharge therefrom, of the value of $800 dollars in money.(3)Nelly Ann Easton $800. Floreed Easton $600—Mary $400 & Fanny $300—
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 servants, or Either of them, into the District of Columbia since the passage of said act of Congress; and that, at the time of the passage thereof, said servants were 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 servants 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 servants 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, Ann Briscoe 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 16th day of May A. D. 1862.
Saml Drury JP
James L. Addison
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.