網頁圖片
PDF
ePub 版

ANN MORTIMER BARRON,

JANUARY 7, 1831.

Mr. DE WITT, from the Committee on Revolutionary Claims, made the

following

REPORT: The Committee on Revolutionary Claims, to which was referred the petition of Ann Mortimer Barron, of the borough of Norfolk, in the State of Virginia, make the following report;

The petitioner states that she is the only daughter arid surviving heir of William Barron, a native of Virginia, who was killed in the service of his country during the revolutionary war, while acting as first lieutenant of the frigate Boston: that he had volunteered to perform the duties of the station, to assist his friend, captain Tucker, in conveying safely to France the late John Adams, Esq.; and that, at the time of his death, the frigate was on her voyage thither from the United States. The petitioner adds, that she has heretofore enjoyed the advantage of generous friends, of whom many are now dead; and, from the natural course of events, she cannot long calculate upon the assistance of others; and she has, therefore, yielded (though with reluctance) to the necessity of stating, that, unless some recompense be made for her early and irreparable loss, the remainder of her life may be such as no nation would in justice permit.

To corroborate the principal facts set forth, the petitioner has produced the certificate, on oath, of captain Tucker, who commanded the Boston on the melancholy occasion of her parent's death. Captain Tucker swears, that William Barron was ordered on board the frigate in the month of January, 1778, and served faithfully and bravely as his first lieutenant, until the 14th day of March ensuing, when he received a wound which caused his death in twelve days thereaster; “we being then,” he says, “on our voyage to France, for the purpose of conveying the late Hon. John Adams, as minister plenipotentiary, with the treaty of alliance between this country and France." In a letter accompanying this certificate, captain Tucker expresses the highest respect for the memory of Mr. Barron, “whose unfortunate and untimely death was deeply lamented by every soul on board the Boston."

The committee are of opinion that this is a strong case, and that it falls within the principle of the resolution of Congress adopted on the 24th day of August, 1780. The third clause of that resolution is in these words:

“That the resolution of the 151h day of May, 1778, granting half-pay, for seven years to the officers of the army who should continue in service to the end of the war, be extended to the widows of those officers who have died, or shall hereafter die, in the service, to commence from the time of such officer's death, and continue for the term of seven years; or if there be no widow, or in case of her death or intermarriage, the said half-pay be given

to the orphan children of the officer dying as aforesaid, if he shall have left any; and that it be recommended to the Legislatures of the respective States to which such officers belong to make provision for paying the same on account of the United States."

The committee are aware that in this clause no allusion in terms is made to officers of the Navy; but it should be remembered, that, as a distinct and an efficient arm of the national defence, the Navy was not fully recognised by Congress during the Revolutionary war, and that the Department itself was not organised until April, 1798. It may with reason, then, be inserred, that individuals engaged in the naval as well as the land service, at that petiod, were included by Government under one general military head, or that the word Navy, in the resolution of August, 1780, was accidentally omitted. It could not have been the intention of Congress to make an unfair and invidious distinction between the widows and orphans of those brave meń who fell in defence of their country's rights. Later experience favors this construction; for, to say nothing of the act of January, 1813, which expressly provides for the widows and children of officers of the Navy or marines, killed, or dying of wounds received in the line of their duty, the pension laws of 1792, 1803, 1806, and 1818, apply alike to the soldier and the sailor.

The committee, therefore, are of opinion that the half-pay of a first lieutenant of a frigate for seven years ought to be allowed to the petitioner; and have, accordingly, directed a bill to be reported for that purpose.

CONGRESS

HEIRS OF WILLIAM TREADWELL

JANUARY 7, 1831.

Mr. DE WITT, from the Committee on Revolutionary Claims, made the

following REPORT:

The Committee on Revolutionary Claims, to which was referred the

resolution of December 14, 1830, direcling said committee "to inquire into the expediency of making provision by law for the benefit of the heirs at law of William Treadwell, a revolutionary officer, so that they may have the benefit of a land warrant grunted to him, and since lost or destroyed,make the following report:

By a letter from the Commissioner of the General Land Office to the Hon. S. Butman, of the House of Representatives, dated 4th January, 1831, it appears that previous thereto, and at no time since the commencement of the last session of Congress, has warrant ninety-three, for three hundred acres, in the name of Samuel Treadwell, and the other heirs of William Treadwell, been presented at the General Land Office for the purpose of obtaining a patent.

The committee are therefore of opinion, that, as by the issuing of the warrant the title to the land described therein became legally vested in the heirs of the said William Treadwell, and as proof sufficient has been exhibited to show that they are, by its probable loss or destruction, rendered incapable of realising the benefit thereof, provision ought to be made by law for the issuing of another warrant in their behalf. Whereupon, it is Resolved, That a bill be reported for that purpose.

CONGRESS

WALTER LOMIS AND ABEL GAY.

JANUARY 7, 1831.
Read, and laid upon the table.

Dir. McCoy, from the Committee of Claims, to which was referred the per tition of Walter Lomis and Abel Gay, made the following

REPORT: The Committee of Claims, to which were referred the petition and pa

pers of Walter Lomis and Abel Gay, report: That the petitioners claim of the United States, under their contract for doing certain mason work on the Cumberland road, the sum of $41 71, and interest since the 6th of March, 1820, at which time they state that sum was found to be due to them on the books of the Treasury of the United States, and has been withheld from them.

They also claim $356 for placing large coping stone on the walls built by them, and state that the agent of the United States, Jonas Thompson, after they entered into their contract with the United States, verbally promised to pay them $2 per foot for that work, which amounted to the sum stated above,

They also claim 82 50 per rod for extra work in paving 749 rods of road under a contract with Daniel Lomis and I. L. Skinner, who were sub-contractors under Beard, Campbell, and McGiffin, amounting to $1,872 50.

The committee enclosed the petition and papers to the Secretary of the Treasury, and have received from the Auditor's office a letter and statement of the account of Lomis & Gay with the United States, with other information pertinent to a decision on the case, to which the committee refer, (marked S,) and make part of this report. From this latter document it will be seen that, so far from Lomis & Gay being creditors on the books of the Treasury, there is a balance against them of $1,279 14. This sum was paid them by J. Thompson, late agent for the United States, on their contract for masonry, over and above what the same amounted to by measurement made by commissioners appointed by the Secretary of the Treasury; and, moreover, that the agent, Thompson, never did measure the greater portion of their work.

The 2d item in their claim, for coping stone, is so clearly and fully expressed in their contract to be part of their work, to be paid for by the perch, that the committee can see no room to doubt that they have not been paid fully the contract price.

The 3d item of the claim, for extra labor in paving the road, cannot be acknowledged as valid against the United States. They are contractors under sub-contracts,and must look to those they contracted with, unless Congress are willing to enter on special legislation for every individual who did a day's labor on that road.

The committee think the claim ought to be rejected.

« 上一頁繼續 »