Title: Petition of Charles H. Wiltberger, 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.00813

TEI/XML: cww.00813.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 Charles H. Wiltberger of the District of Columbia 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 the following described persons of African descent of the names of, William Hawkins, Margaret Guttridge, Cornelius Guttridge and Sarah Frances Guttridge for and during the life of said Margaret, Cornelius and Sarah; and for a term of years ending the 14th day of February 1864. of said William Hawkins; 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 and of the personal description as follows:

  • William Hawkins a dark Chestnut Colored man of pleasant Countenance about five feet ten inches in stature and twenty-nine years two months of age..
  • Margaret Guttridge a bright mulatto girl thick lips straight hair, and fifteen years seven months of age:
  • Cornelius Guttridge a sprightly boy of dark skin, wool head, and bright eyes; ten years one month of age:
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  • Sarah Frances Guttridge a girl, of yellow skin, Curly head, and large bright eyes; eight years eight months of age:.

That your petitioner acquired his claim to the aforesaid service or labor of said persons in manner following:

  • Of the said William Hawkins by will of Rebecca Burch duly recorded in the Register of Will Office an extract of which duly certified is herewith filed:
  • Of the said Margaret Guttridge, Cornelius Guttridge and Sarah Frances Guttridge by purchase of the mother of said persons of Dr. Hanson Penn Executor of Sarah O. Hilleary deceased and who was sold as a slave for life the bill of sale will be found recorded in the records for the County of Washington D. C. a Copy of which is herewith filed:.

That your petitioners claim to the service or labor of said persons was at the time of said discharge therefrom of the value of Seventeen hundred and ninety dollars in money: to wit

William Hawkins was hired out at $28. pr​ month [neat?] returns $20. pr​ month for 22 months the time to serve. value $440.—
Margaret Guttridge a cook who took the place of one hired at $7. pr​ month and for whom $1200. Cash was offered in March 1861. value 700.—
Cornelius Guttridge house servant do 400.—
Sarah Frances Guttridge ditto do 250.—
Total $1790—


Your petitioner hereby declares that he bears true and faithful allegiance to the Constitution and 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 were held to service or labor therein under and by virtue of your petitioner's said claim to such service or labor.

Your petitioner further states and alleges that the 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.—

Your petitioner further states and alleges that he knows of no bodily infirmity that would lessen the value of said persons but that he believes each of them to be sound in body and mind; and he prays the said Commissioners to investigate and determine the validity of his said claim to the service or labor of said persons as herein 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.

C. H. Wiltberger

June 24th 1862. Received of Chas. H. Wiltberger $.50 for filing and recording Bill of Sale from Hanson Penn Executor S. O. Hilleary to Chas. H. Wiltberger

Jno. A. Smith [illegible]
prJ. M. Hanson
Extract from the last Will and testament of Rebecca Burch.

I give and bequeath to my son in law Charles H. Wiltberger my slave boy William until he is thirty one years of age or during the natural life of my said slave woman Sally, if longer than that time, and then he shall be manumitted by the said Charles H. Wiltberger his heirs or assigns, and the said Charles H. Wiltberger or his heirs shall during the life time of the said slave Sally have a charge and see that she is comfortably provided for, either as a free woman or as a slave as the case may be.

I certify that the aforegoing is a true extract from the last will and testament of Rebecca Burch, deceased, filed and recorded in the office of Register of Wills for Washington County aforesaid.

Witness my hand and seal of office this 24th day of June A. D. 1862.

Moses Kelly

I, Charles H. Wiltberger 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.—

C. H. Wiltberger

Subscribed and sworn to before me this 25th day of June A. D. 1862.—

H. Naylor, J. Peace
Petition of
C. H. Wiltberger
Filed June 30, 1862
Transcription and encoding: Janel Cayer, Nima Najafi Kianfar, and Kenneth M. Price.