Imatges de pÓgina

this subject will be most thankfully received and highly appreciated, by,

Very respectfully, yours truly,

JOS. C. KENNEDY. John P. PEPPER, Esq., Alderman of the city,

and late Superintendent of Department Buildings.

JANUARY 4, 1855. Sir : In answer to the above inquiry, I may say that during sixteen years' superintendency of the treasury department, it always was the custom of the government to have all buildings rented by the same, upon leaving, repaired and put in complete tenantable order.


Mr. Kennedy declares, that after the government had occupied these buildings for the space of three years, they were abandoned by the government without giving him the proper legal notice of their intention to do so; and that the interior of the buildings, and the premises generally, were left in an abused, damaged, and filthy condition, not fit for occupancy, and that, consequently, he sustained great damage and loss. In support of this declaration he presents the testimony of Mr. John S. Hollingshead, who was chief clerk part of the time under Mr. Kennedy, and for a while chief clerk under Mr. De Bow, which is as follows, viz:

WASHINGTON, January 19, 1855. Having been requested by J. C. G. Kennedy, esq., former superintendent of census, to state my opinion as to what amount of money it would require to place the house rented by the United States of him, or of Mr. Selden, in as good condition as it was when the United States rented the same, I would state, that I do not believe that less than two thousand dollars would place the building in as good condition as when government took possession of it. I was chief clerk part of the timeunder Mr. Kennedy, and for a while chief clerk under Mr. DeBow. In all alterations and fixtures for the accommodation of the immense quantity of matter in the shape of returns, &c., the preservation of the property was not considered, but the walls were perforated with nails for shelving, &c., the paper of the most costly character destroyed, and this once beautiful house (for the interior was very finely finished) was left, so far as the interior was concerned, a perfect wreck. With at times 75 clerks, holding situations of a very temporary character, it could not be expected they would be particular in preserving clean and in good order, property they did not expect to occupy long; and at times some of them displayed the organ of destructiveness. I have no interest in this matter, and all I say I honestly believe.


Sworn and subscribed before me,


And also by the testimony of Mr. John W. Forney, who became the proprietor of the buildings while in the state in which they were left by the government, which reads as follows:

Personally appeared before me, John W. Forney, esq., who being duly sworn according to law, deposeth and saith: That he became proprietor of the buildings on 8th street, Washington, previously occupied by the Census Office; that the same were, when taken by him, in an untenantable and damaged condition, the walls being much cracked, the papering destroyed, and the wood-work much injured—the whole requiring a thorough renovation ; that to render the premises tenantable and place them in a condition such as he deemed necessary for the comfort of his family, he expended over three thousand dollars.


Sworn and subscribed this 19th day of January, 1855.


The chairman of your committee addressed a letter of inquiry to the Hon. Alex. H. H. Stuart, late Secretary of the Interior, requesting him to state how he understood the contract, as it related to the buildings being left in as good, tenantable condition as they were in when taken possession of by the government. To this inquiry your committee received the following reply, to wit:

STAUNTON, VIRGINIA, January 21, 1855. DEAR SIR: My recollection of the contract for the lease of Mr. Kennedy's house is, that the rent was to be ascertained by John W. Maury and William A. Bradley, and that for any injury done to the house, beyond the ordinary wear and tear, compensation should be made, by. restoring it to the condition in which it was at the commencement of the lease. At the time the contract was made, it was not supposed that we would need the house very long, and but little injury was anticipated. I regarded the government as standing on the footing of any other tenant. Very respectfully, your friend and obedient servant,


Your committee, in view of the foregoing facts, are of opinion that the government is, in justice to this claimant, bound to put these premises in as good, tenantable condition as they were in when taken possession of. Your committee are of opinion that two thousand dollars will no more than make good the damages sustained by this claimant, and would therefore recommend the passage of the accompanying bill.

2d Session.

No. 78.


FEBRUARY 2, 1855.–Laid upon the table, and ordered to be printed.

Mr. HENDRICKS, from the Committee on Invalid Pensions, made the



The Committee on Invalid Pensions, to whom was referred the petition of Frederick A. Heisley, have had the same under consideration, and report:

That the facts stated by the petitioner present no case whatever for special legislation in his favor. He is now receiving, and for ten years past has received, a full pension for total disability, provided by law for persons of his grade in the service. It does not even appear in his petition what was the nature, extent, or location of his wound; nor that it has prevented his contributing towards his support by labor or attention to business. He does not claim for himself extraordinary gallantry, or that he was disabled in some hazardous enterprise in the service of the country. He states that he was wounded in the battle of Bladensburg; but the committee cannot receive that alone as conclusive evidence of extraordinary gallantry. If the laws should be so amended as to increase the pensions of those of his rank, he would be benefited thereby; but as a case for special relief, the committee think this wholly without merit, and that it should not be further pressed upon Congress, and therefore recommend that the petition do lie upon the table.

2d Session.

No. 79.


[To accompany S. bill No. 131.]

FEBRUARY 2, 1855.

Mr. I. WASHBURN, jr., from the Committee on Revolutionary Pensions,

made the following


The Committee on Revolutionary Pensions, to whom was referred Senate

bill No. 131, for the relief of the heirs of Judith Worthen, deceased, respectfully report:

That upon examination of the papers in the case, they find the facts to be correctly stated in the Senate report accompanying said bill; and agreeing in the deductions of the Senate committee, they adopt the said report as their own, and which is as follows:

JANUARY 16, 1854.-Mr. WILLIAMS made the following report:

The Committee on Pensions, to whom was referred the memorial of Nathan

Worthen, praying for the payment to the heirs of Judith Worthen, deceased, of a pension, to which she was entitled as the widow of Isaac Worthen, deceased, respectfully report:

That it appears from the papers presented, that Judith Worthen the widow of Isaac Worthen, à revolutionary pensioner, applied at the Pension Office for a pension, under the act of July 7, 1838. This act gave to the widows of certain revolutionary soldiers for the term of five years from the 4th of March, 1836, the annuity or pension which might have been allowed to the husband, in virtue of a previous act, if living at the time it was passed. Her husband received his pension, under the previous act referred to, until his death, which occurred on the 1st day of March, 1841. On the 3d day of March, 1843, the widow made her declaration, under the act of 7th July, 1838, and the next month filed her papers with the Commissioner of Pensions. These papers were not finally acted on at the Pension Office until after the 30th April, 1844. On that day an act was passed providing that no pension should thereafter be granted to a widow for the same time for which her husband had received one. The five years for which the pension was granted to widows, by the act of July 7, 1838, extended from 4th of March, 1836, to March 4, 1841. The husband died on the 1st March, 1841, and, in consequence

« AnteriorContinua »