Title: Petition of Esau Pickrell, 30 June 1862

Date: June 30, 1862

Source Text: A microfilm reproduction of the original document held at the National Archives and Records Administration, Microcopy 520, Reel 6. 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.00807

TEI/XML: cww.00807.xml



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, Esau Pickrell of Georgetown 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 six persons person of African descent of the name of Bill GreenAnna Green, Eliza Green, Florence, Eliza & George for and during the life of said persons and that by said act of Congress said persons 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 persons were of the ages of hereinafter mentioned— and of the personal description following:(1)

Bill Green aged 62 years— Black
Anna Green " 61 " "
Eliza " 24 " "
Florence " 3 " "
Eliza " 18 mos. "
George " 50 years "


That your petitioner acquired his claim to the aforesaid service or labor of said persons in manner following:(2) Bill, Anna & Eliza, were purchased from John Kurtz & Clement Cox Trustees mentioned in the bill of sale hereto annexed.

Florence & Eliza Jr. are the Children of Eliza Green
George was purchased of John F. Pickrell of Baltimore for the sum of $700—per receipt hereto annexed.

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 two thousand two hundred & fifty dollars in money.(3)to wit:

Bill $300
Anna 300
Eliza 850
Florence 130
Eliza 100
George 550.$

The adults are first rate servants, and all are healthy & free from all mental and bodily infirmity—

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 into the District of Columbia since the passage of said act of Congress; and that, at the time of the passage thereof, said persons 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 persons 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.

(Signed by)
Esau Pickrell
John Kurtz &
Clement Coxe Trustees
Deed for Slaves

Be it known that under and by virtue of a certain Indenture between William B. Thompson & wife of the first part & the Farmers and Mechanics Bank of Georgetown of the second part, and ourselves of the third part, bearing date February 12, 1840 and recorded in Liber W. B. No 77 folios 51 &c. of the Land Records of the County of Washington, D.C. we have this day made sale to Esau Pickrell for the price of five hundred and thirty dollars, of the following negro slaves to wit: Bill Green, Anna his wife and their three children Eliza, Nelly and Florence, under the positive restriction of not being removed from the District of Columbia or State of Maryland; and the said Esau Pickrell having complied with the terms of sale in regard to the purchase money, we do hereby transfer said slaves to him. Given under our hands this 18th day of January A.D. 1847—there being an erasure at the 11th line.—

J Kurtz
Clement Cox Trustees

Received of Esau Pickrell Esq​, of Georgetown D.C. Seven Hundred Dollars in full for my negro man, George—aged about fifty years & Slave for life: Witness my hand seal.

John F Pickrell seal
David Burke

[Form of the Oath for the Verification of the Petition.]

I, Esau Pickrell 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.

(Signed by)
Esau Pickrell

Sworn to and subscribed before me this 26th day of June A. D. 1862.

(Signed by)
John S Hollingshead
Notary Public
Esau Pickrell
Filed June 30, 1862
Wm H Edes
Miss Betsy Dozier
Geo Town
T. H Lane

 Note (1.)-- Here describe the person, so as to identify him or her; and if there be more than one slave, describe each one separately.

 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.

Transcription and encoding: Courtney Rebecca Lawton, Janel Cayer, and Kenneth J. Winkle.