Title: Petition of Susan Keene, 15 July 1862
Date: July 15, 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.00948
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, Susan Keene through
Benj. R Keene her agent
and attorney 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 Adam Lee, about twenty seven years of age, of
mulatto colour person of African descent of the name
above mentioned for and during the life of said
above described person and that by said act of
Congress said persons has been discharged and
freed of and from all claim of your petitioner to such service or labor; that at
the time of said discharge said Adam
Lee was of the age of about
twenty seven years and of the personal description following:(1)
Adam is a medium coloured mulatto, about five feet, eight inches high, of medium stoutness,
rather low woolly hair & neat and careful in his appearance.
That your petitioner acquired her claim to the aforesaid service or labor of said person in manner following:(2) Adam has been the slave of present owner, Susan Keene about ten years, she having acquired him by inheritance from her mother, Mrs. Anne Keene, to whom he was born a slave.
That your petitioner's claim to the service or labor of said Adam was, at the time of said discharge therefrom, of the value of Fifteen hundred dollars in money.(3)He the said Adam Lee is a first class, experienced Cook and Waiter, having been for many years engaged in such service. Commanding always the highest wages. He is sound of mind and body very healthy, of good disposition, polite and accommodating. Is intelligent and can read and write. He is capable of taking charge of an establishment in his business as is evidenced by his having charge of the dining room in the most fashionable restaurant and eating saloon in the city at the time of said discharge from service
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 Adam Lee into the District of Columbia since the passage of said act of Congress; and that, at the time of the passage thereof, said Adam 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 her said claim to the service or labor of said Adam Lee 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 Adam Lee 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.
Benj. R. Keene
Agent and Attorney
of said Claimant Susan Keene
[Form of the Oath for the Verification of the Petition.]
Washington County, ss.
I, Benj R Keene 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.
Benj. R Keene
Agent & Attorney
for Claimant Susan Keene
Sworn to and subscribed before me this 15th day of July A. D. 1862.
H. Naylor J. P.
by her Agent & Attorney
Benj R Keen—
Under Emancipation Act
of April 16 1862
as witness & John Lee
& Col Keene of Ba
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.