Title: Petition of Thomas W. Riley, 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.00525
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, Thomas W Riley of Washington D. C. 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 Four females and one male, persons of African descent of the name of Alexander Martin, Rachel Martin, Lucy Montgomery Adelaide (her child) and Sydney (her child) for and during the life of said Alexander, Rachel, Lucy, Adelaide and Sydney, and that by said act of Congress said Alexander, Rachel, Lucy, Adelaide and Sydney, were discharged and freed of and from all claim of your petitioner to such service or labor; that at the time of said discharge said Alexander Martin was of the age of Sixty years, or thereabouts, and of the personal description following:(1) of a Black Complexion—tall and stout, stoops a little in walking—a little knocked kneed—intelligent.
That your petitioner acquired his claim to the aforesaid service or labor of said Alexander Rachel, Lucy, Adelaide & Sydney in manner following:(2) The said Alexander was acquired by purchase from Benjamin McQuay about 10 years ago.—the consideration paid for him was $100. According to the best of his recollection he took a Bill of Sale for said Alexander, which, unfortunately he has lost or mislaid—the said Alexander has been his possession ever since—The said Rachel was acquired by purchase from [Mudd?] (now decd) about 10 years ago—the consideration paid for her was $100. He has no bill of sale.—Said Rachel has been in his possession Since the day of acquisition. the said Lucy was acquired about 6 years by purchase from Bac. T Hodges now of Montgomery Co Md the consideration paid for her was $900 according to the best of his recollection and belief. He has no Bill of sale [illegible] has been lost or mislaid. Adelaide and Sydney are her children, born since the acquisition of the Mother Lucy. they are all recorded on Books of [Corporation?]
That your petitioner's claim to the service or labor of said persons was, at the time of said discharge therefrom, of the value of Twenty four hundred dollars (2400) in money.(3)viz: the said Alexander $400. the said Rachel $300: the said Lucy Montgomery $1200. the said Adelaide $300. and the said Sydney $200. Alexander is a good working hand—and particularly good as either Hostler or Teamster. he is sound and healthy of good habits generally and is worth much more than the value above mentioned,—He can command good wages at any time. Rachel is a good Cook and housekeeper—Sound and healthy—and of good habits. can command a good price for her services. Lucy is a strong, healthy woman—a good House[illegible] either as Cook, chambermaid, or Housekeeper. Can command good wages for her services at any time. Her children Adelaide and Sydney are Sound and Healthy, active and smart And your Petitioner knows of no defect or infirmity—mental or bodily in any of said persons
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 persons, above named into the District of Columbia since the passage of said act of Congress; and that, at the time of the passage thereof, said persons 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 his said claim to the service or labor of said persons, above named 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 persons 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.
Thos W Riley
[Form of the Oath for the Verification of the Petition.]
Washington County, ss.
I, Thomas W Riley 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.
Thos W Riley
Sworn to and subscribed before me this 28th day of May A. D. 1862.
F. I. Murphey
Thomas W. Riley.
Asbury Lloyd Esq
J. W. Martin,
Wm J Doniphan
John F Reiley
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.