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JANUARY 5, 1855.
Mr. Bocock, from the Committee on Naval Affairs, made the following
The Committee on Naval Affairs, to whom was referred the memorial of Sa
rah Morris, wife of Robert Morris, and only heir of Robert Mitchell, deceased, late a midshipman in the United States navy, report:
That the claim is one of the plainest and most undoubted merit. The facts appear to be briefly these : On the 27th day of April, 1816, Congress appropriated the sum of one hundred thousand dollars to be distributed as prize money among the captors of the Algerine vessels taken by the American squadron under the command of Commodore Decatur, and afterwards restored to the Dey of Algiers. It appears from the prize list on file in the Treasury Department, that Robert Mitchell, then a midshipman on board the United States ship Guerriere, was one of the captors aforesaid, and, as such, was entitled to the sum of one hundred and twenty-three dollars and seventy-three cents as his share of the sum so appropriated. Said Mitchell died in service in the year 1817, without having received this money, and it has never been paid. Before this memorialist asserted her claim, the prize agent had settled his account, and returned into the treasury the balance which remained in his hands. The sum allowed to said Mitchell, then deceased, could not, therefore, be paid to his legal representative, at the Treasury Department, without a re-appropriation of the amount by Congress. The object of this memorialist is to procure said re-appropriation. That it ought to be made, cannot admit of a moment's doubt.
The facts of the death of Robert Mitchell, and that the meinorialist is his only heir, are fully proven. The committee therefore report a bill.
[To accompany Joint Resolution No. 41.]
JANUARY 5, 1855.
Mr. Etheridge, from the Committee on Military Affairs, made the
The Committee on Military Affairs, to whom was referred the petition of
John Dugan for bounty land and extra pay, report: That the petitioner was a volunteer in the war with Mexico, and served as a private in company C, Mississippi volunteers. He was mustered into service the 3d of June, 1846, at Vicksburg, Mississippi, for twelve months, and was "absent without leave" from the 20th of May following, thus reducing the period of his service about twenty days. It is proved that the memorialist was a good soldier, and acted well in the battles of Monterey and Buena Vista. The memorialist states that he was too unwell to leave Monterey when the regiment was ordered to Brazos Santiago, preparatory to embarking for the United States. Captain Willis says this was probably so; but if it were not so, “his staying at Monterey cannot be regarded as desertion, as the whole regiment was virtually disbanded” the moment General Taylor ordered it home. The memorialist performed his duty well; and his failure to return home with his regiment, in preference to remaining in a hostile country, should not be regarded as at all equivalent to an act of desertion, as his own safety, and not the interests of the government, was involved by his conduct. His meritorious conduct in battle, and the fact that he did not separate himself from his regiment until it had performed the duties for which it was organized, and had been ordered home, are sufficient to cause the committee to recommend the adoption of a resolution in compliance with the prayer of the petitioner.
JANUARY 5, 1855.
Mr. HENDRICKS, from the Committee on Invalid Pensions, made the
The Committee on Invalid Pensions, to whom was referred the petition of
William Brown, of the county of Green and State of Tennessee, and the evidence in support thereof, report:
That the said petitioner was a private in the company commanded by Captain Joseph Hall, in the 4th regiment East Tennessee militia, commanded by Colonel Bayless, in the war of 1812; that during the winter of 1814-'15, he served in said company in the States of Tennessee and Alabama; that he endured great fatigue and exposure, in consequence of which he became disabled with rheumatism, from which he has not at any time since been free, and by which he is now three-fourths disabled. The committee report a bill for his relief.