Title: Petition of J. Frank Brown, 26 May 1862
Date: May 26, 1862
Source Text: A microfilm reproduction of the original document held at the National Archives and Records Administration, Microcopy 520, Reel 4. 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.00420
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, J. Frank Brown of Baltimore Maryland by this his petition in writing, represents and states, that he 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 [no handwritten text supplied here] person of African descent of the name of Henniretta Johnson for and during the life of said Henniretta Johnson until the year 1870 and that by said act of Congress said Henniretta Johnson discharged and freed of and from all claim of your petitioner to such service or labor; that at the time of said discharge said Henniretta Johnson of the age of 22 years and of the personal description following:(1) Bright Mulatto about Five feet six inches high
That your petitioner acquired his claim to the aforesaid service or labor of said Henniretta Johnson in manner following:(2) Purchased from Joseph H. [Donovan?] on the 29th of January 1859 and Recorded among the chattel Records of Baltimore City in Liber G E. S. no 21 folio 15 as per inclosed paper
That your petitioner's claim to the service or labor of said Henniretta Johnson was, at the time of said discharge therefrom, of the value of Four Hundred dollars in money.(3) [no handwritten text supplied here]
Your petitioner hereby declares that he bears true and faithful allegiance to the Government of the United States, and that he 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 he has not brought said Henniretta Johnson into the District of Columbia since the passage of said act of Congress; and that, at the time of the passage thereof, said [no handwritten text supplied here] 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 his said claim to the service or labor of said Henniretta Johnson 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 his said claim to the service or labor of said Henniretta Johnson 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.
J. Frank Brown
Bill of Sale.
Jos. Lucas & Son's Steam Press
Known all Men by these Presents, that I, Joseph S. Donovan of Baltimore City and State of Maryland, for and in consideration of the sum of Four hundred dollars lawful money of the United States, to me in hand paid by J. Frank. Brown. of the State and City, aforesaid at or before the sealing and delivery of these presents, the receipt whereof is hereby acknowledged: HAVE granted, bargained and sold, and by these present DO grant, bargain and sell unto the said J Frank Brown his Executors, Administrators and Assigns, My Negro girl Henrietta who is to Serve until the year Eighteen hundred and Seventy  She being the Same negro girl bequeath to viz H. M. Fuller by the last will and testament of Robert L. Hall. dated January 26th 1847 and recorded in records of the office of the Register of Wills of Baltimore County in Liber D.[illegible] No 21 folio 405 &c
TO HAVE and TO HOLD the said described Negro Girl
Henrietta to the said J Frank Brown his Executors, Administrators and Assigns
for ever: AND I the said Joseph S Donovan for Myself my Heirs, Executors and Administrators,
the said Negro Girl Henrietta unto the said
J. Frank. Brown his Executors and Administrators against me the said Joseph S Donovan viz Executors and
Administrators, and against all and every other person or persons
whomsoever, shall and will warrant and for ever defend by these
In Witness Whereof, we have hereunto set our hand and seal this Twenty Ninth day of January eighteen hundred and fifty Nine
Joseph S Donovan Seal
J. Frank Brown Seal
State of Maryland, City of Baltimore, Sct.
Be it Remembered, That on this Twenty Ninth day of January 1859, before the subscriber, a Justice of the Peace for said City, appeared Joseph S. Donovan and acknowledged the foregoing Instrument of Writing to be his act and deed, according to the true intent and meaning thereof. And now at the same time before me personally appeared also J. Frank Brown the within named bargainee and made oath in due form of law that the consideration set forth in the foregoing bill of sale, is true and bona fide, as therein set forth.
In Testimony Whereof, I have hereunto subscribed my name on the day and year aforesaid.
Jno Shou[illegible] J. P.
Jos. S. Donovan
J. Frank. Brown
Received for Record 29 January 1859 at 10 ½ o. clock and Same day Recorded among the chattel Records of [illegible] City in Liber G E. S. no 21 folio 15 &c and Ex[illegible]
Geo E [Langston?] clk
[Form of the Oath for the Verification of the Petition.]
Washington County, ss. May 23rd 1862
I, J. Frank Brown 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.
J. Frank Brown
Sworn to and subscribed before me this 23 day of May A. D. 1862.
W. E. Howard
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.