Title: Petition of Josiah Dent (Administrator of William S. Nicholls), 16 June 1862
Date: June 16, 1862
Source Text: A microfilm reproduction of the original document held at the National Archives and Records Administration, Microcopy 520, Reel 5. 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.00685
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, Josiah Dent, Administrator of Wm S.Nicholls of [no handwritten text supplied here] 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 a certain female Slave a person of African descent of the name of Mary Brown for and during the life of said Mary and that by said act of Congress said Mary was discharged and freed of and from all claim of your petitioner to such service or labor; that at the time of said discharge said Mary was of the age of sixty two years and of the personal description following:(1)viz, a dark mulatto of full size.
That your petitioner acquired his claim to the aforesaid service or labor of said Mary in manner following:(2) viz, By virtue of his office of Administrator of the Estate of Wm S. Nicholls late of Georgetown in the District of Columbia, deceased, to whom said Mary belonged at the time of his death
That your petitioner's claim to the service or labor of said Mary was, at the time of said discharge therefrom, of the value of two hundred dollars in money.(3) said Mary being a first rate family cook and sound in body.
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 slave into the District of Columbia since the passage of said act of Congress; and that, at the time of the passage thereof, said Slave 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 Slave 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 Slave 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.
Josiah Dent adm. of Wm S. Nicholls
[Form of the Oath for the Verification of the Petition.]
Washington County, ss.
I, Josiah Dent 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.
Josiah Dent adm.
Sworn to and subscribed before me this 14th day of June A. D. 1862.
N. Callan JPeace
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.