Title: Petition of Christopher Grammer, 28 May 1862
Date: May 28, 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.00515
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."
The undersigned Christopher Grammer of the city of Washington and District of Columbia Executer of the late Gottlieb C. Grammer late of said City, by this his statement 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 a female person of African descent of the name of Lucretia Leonard for and during the life of the said Lucretia and that by said Act of Congress said Lucretia was discharged and freed of and from all claim of the undersigned, to such service or labor; that at the time of said discharge said Lucretia was of the age of fifty eight years as the undersigned is informed and believes; and of the personal description following: a mulatto, rather low of stature and well-set, her height being five feet one inch nearly; face freckles; she has a wart or mole (small & not noticeable unless she is closely observed) under the right eye; her deportment and manner is sedate, respectful & civil. That the undersigned acquired his claim to the aforesaid service or labor of said Lucretia in manner following: the said Lucretia was the slave for life of the Father of the undersigned, the said Gottlieb C. Grammer who purchased her for the term of of her life at the sale that was made sometime in the year 1839 of the slaves of the late Joseph Kent formerly Governor of Maryland and a senator therefrom of the United States, by the Executor of the said Joseph Kent; that undersigned has been informed and believes that the said Lucretia was born a slave in the family of said Joseph Kent and had continued as such therein until the date of said sale; that the said facts of her servitude as aforesaid, and the legal sale of her as aforesaid, together with the fact of her age as herein stated are within the knowledge recollection of Mr. DeWitt Kent a son of the said Joseph Kent, now a clerk in the Land Office in this City who will testify to the truth thereof, if summoned; that the undersigned knows of his personal knowledge that his said Father went to said sale in order to purchase some family servants; and that he returned with the said Lucretia and that since then he had held & claimed her as his slave for life until his death which occurred on the 14th day of January 1857; the undersigned further states that he has made diligent search among his Father's paper for written evidence of said sale and purchase, but such, if it ever existed has been lost. the undersigned further states that his said Father by his last will and Testament duly proved in the Orphans Court of the County of Washington in said District on the 26th and 28th of January 1857 appointed the undersigned and his brother Julius E. Grammer (now a citizen of Columbus, Ohio) his Executors; that Letters Testamentary were granted to them accordingly on the 26th day of January 1857, and which undersigned is ready to exhibit when thereto required
—That the claim of the undersigned to the service or labor of the said Lucretia was at the time of said discharge therefrom of the value of Four Hundred Dollars (400$) which estimate is based upon the following facts: the said Lucretia possesses a sound constitution and excellent heath; and looks in the opinion of the undersigned much younger than the age herein stated; is free, so far as the undersigned after inquiring, & from his own observation, known, from all maladies, excepting some liability to rheumatism—the only severe attack of which, that the undersigned knows or has be informed of, did not disable her from her work & duties except for a few days; that the said Lucretia was at the time of said discharge an experienced, faithful, honest, trustworthy, efficient, and affectionate & respectful family servant identified with and valued and regarded by all of them for these qualities that she was a very good cook and very good and experienced nurse; that for the last two years she has been hired out & obtained wages varying from six to Eight Dollars per month; and the undersigned knows of no moral or mental or physical defects other than the above stated to impair the value of his claim to her service or labor.
The undersigned hereby declares that he bears true faithful allegiance to the Government of the United States and that he has not borne arms arms against the United States in the present rebellion nor in any way given aid or comfort thereto.
And the undersigned further states and alleges that he has not brought the said Lucretia into the District of Columbia since the passage of the said Act of Congress and that at the time of the passage thereof said Lucretia was held to service or labor therein under and by virtue of the undersigned's claim to such service or labor.
The undersigned further states and alleges that his said claim to the service or labor of the said Lucretia 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 the undersigned asks that the said Commissioners will investigate and determine the validity of his said claim to the service or labor of the said Lucretia herein before set forth; and that 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—
Christopher Grammer Exr of late Gottlieb C. Grammer
Washington County to wit:
I Christopher Grammer, the party on a king the foregoing statement & signing the same, being duly sworn do depose and say that all the several mattes and things which are set forth and stated in the foregoing Statement 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 28th day of May 1862 AD 1862
John S. Hollingshead
Washington County, to wit:
I, DeWitt Kent, the person named in the foregoing Statement of Christopher Grammer being duly sworn do depose and say that I have carefully read his said statement: that I know the mulatto woman Lucretia therein named and described, perfectly well and have recently seen her in this city both before and since the passage of the said act of April 16th 1862 and since the sale and purchase of her by the said Gottlieb C. Grammer of my Father's Executor and the manner set forth in the foregoing statement I have known her as the slave of the said Gottlieb C. Grammer and his legal representation and I so further depose and say that the other facts therein set forth as being within my personal knowledge and recollection are true and that I will testify to the truth thereof before any Court or commission whenever summoned; and I further offer and say that in my judgment the estimate of Four Hundred Dollars is a fair and just estimate of her value
Sworn to and subscribed before me a Notary Public in and for the county aforesaid, this 28th day of May A. D. 1862.
John S. Hollingshead
Statement of Chr. Grammer Exr. of G C Grammer in the matter of Lucretia Leonard an Emancipated Slave under the act of April 16th 1862
Wm B. Todd