Title: Petition of Catharine Chisholm, 9 July 1862
Date: July 9, 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.00871
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."
Catharine Chisholm, spinster of the District of Columbia by
this her petition in writing, represents and
states, that she 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 Caroline Scott and
Elizabeth Scott two persons of African descent
of the name of
respectively for and during the life of said persons respectively and that by said act of
Congress said persons respectively 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
respectively of the ages of about 48 years, and 10 years and of the personal
Said Caroline is of light copper
color & about five feet two inches in height. Said
Elizabeth is the daughter of said
Caroline, and of a light copper color, & about
four feet three and a half inches in height
That your petitioner acquired her claim to the aforesaid service or labor of said persons respectively in manner following:(2) by gift, some years since, from her sister the late Mary Gibbs, of Anne Arundel County & State of Maryland, now deceased, & your petitioner files herewith a paper writing signed by the only children of her said sister who survived her, intended to quiet her title to said persons, if this claim shall be brought in question—
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 One Thousand dollars in money.(3) Said Caroline is a sound healthy woman, capable and well instructed to do cooking, washing ironing, & in fact any housework: said Elizabeth is a bright intelligent & apt child for her age. both of the said persons are free from any moral, mental or bodily infirmity or defect impairing the value of their services so far as your Petitioner knows
Your petitioner hereby declares that she bears true and faithful allegiance to the Government of the United States, and that she 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 she has not brought said persons or either of
them into the District of Columbia since the passage of said act of
Congress; and that, at the time of the passage thereof, said persons respectively were
as 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 her said claim to the service or labor of said persons or either of them 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 her said claim to the service or labor of said persons respectively 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.
Whereas Mrs. Mary Gibbs, widow, late of Anne Arundel County in the State of Maryland deceased, died in the year Eighteen Hundred and fifty Seven intestate, and leaving surviving her only two children, viz, A. Chisholm Gibbs of the County aforesaid, and Charlotte Gibbs now the wife of Walter Smith of the City of Baltimore in the State aforesaid, having during her life time bestowed by gift two negro slaves named respectively Caroline Scott and her child Elizabeth Scott, at different times. Upon the sister of said deceased, Catharine Chisholm, of Washington City in the District of Columbia, but without having executed any bill of sale for the said slaves or either of them, or any other writing, now therefore in order to quiet the title of said Catharine Chisholm in and to said property and to believe and perceive any suffered claim or title to the same in either of said children Know all men that in consideration of the promises the said A. Chisholm Gibbs, and the said Walter Smith and Charlotte his wife do hereby declare said property to be free from all and every manner of lien, claim encumbrance or demand of the said A. Chisholm, Thomas and Charlotte, and that they nor any one of them, or either of them have or has not at any time exercised or claimed any right of ownership or property in said slaves or either of them since they were respectively bestowed upon the said Catharine Chisholm
In testimony whereof we have hereunto set our respective hands and seals this 20th twentieth day of June in the year Eighteen Hundred and Sixty-two
A. C. Gibbs seal
Walter Smith seal
Charlotte E Smith seal
[Form of the Oath for the Verification of the Petition.]
Washington County, ss.
I, Catharine Chisholm 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.
Sworn to and subscribed before me this 8 day of July A. D. 1862.
D. Rowland J. P.
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.