Imatges de pÓgina



[To accompany bill H. R. No. 448.)

MAY 2, 1862.-Ordered to be printed.

Mr. FENTON, from the Committee on Claims, made the following


The Committee of Claims, to whom was referred the petition of Colonel Joseph Paddock, have had the same under consideration, and report :

That it appears that said Paddock was appointed lieutenant colonel and colonel commandant of the 5th regiment of Indiana militia by then Governor William Henry Harrison, and as such commandant served in the Indian war of 1810 and 1811, and the war of 1812 with Great Britain. That during the term of four years he was in actual service or held himself in readiness for action wherever duty might call him. That the soldiers who served under him received pay for services on his certificate of service, as appears from evidence furnished from the proper department, and that he has never received any compensation for said services except a land warrant for 160 acres of land.

The petitioner alleges that he was in good health and easy circumstances at the close of the war, and for that reason did not present his claim to the government for compensation; but that he is now aged, infirm, and poor, and in great need of the relief prayed for.

While your committee do not deem the record evidence quite conclusive as to the amount of service rendered, they have no doubt of his having served in the capacity of colonel commandant, and that he has never received from the government any remuneration except the land warrant before mentioned. They therefore report the accompanying bill and recommend its passage.

2d Session.

No. 98.


MAY 2, 1862.-Referred to the Committee of Claims, and ordered to be printed,

Mr. EDGERTON, from the Committee on Private Land Claims, made

the following


The Committee on Private Land Claims, to whom was referred the peti

tion of William Sawyer and others, report:

By the third article of the treaty of October, 1818, with the Miami Indians, the United States agreed to grant to several persons, members of the Miami tribe, and their heirs, certain tracts of land described in the said treaty, and among them the following:

"To Joseph Richardville, and Joseph Richardville, jr., two sections of land, being one on each side of St. Mary's river, and below the reservation made on that river by the treaty of Greenville, in 1795.'

On the 23d of October, 1826, another treaty was made with the Miamies, the seventh article of which provides “that the United States shall purchase of the persons named in the schedule hereunto annexed” the land therein mentioned, being the same land granted by the treaty of 1818, “and shall pay the price affixed to their names, respectively." Among the claims designated was this claim of Richardville, and is as follows: "The two sections on the St. Mary's granted to Joseph Richardville, and Joseph Richardville, jr., to be conveyed by Joseph Richardville, there being no such person as Joseph Richardville, jr., for these two last-named sections, three thousand dollars are to be paid to Joseph Richardville.”

In compliance with this provision, on the 28th day of August, 1827, Joseph Richardville executed and delivered his deed to the United States, which deed was without a seal. Under this conveyance the United States proceeded to sell the land, the last being sold on the third of December, 1849.

In 1844, one R. Breckinridge, of Fort Wayne, Indiana, presented a deed in favor of himself and one William H. Coombs, from a halfbreed Indian, calling himself Joseph Richardville, jr., which deed was executed on the 28th of September, 1843, and by which the grantor undertook to convey, for one thousand dollars, his interest in the lands previously conveyed by Joseph Richardville. Failing to obtain the President's approval, Breckinridge made no further efforts

to obtain the land; but in February, 1845, Charles Sweetzer addressed a letter to President Tyler, stating that he was employed by the creditors of Joseph Richardville, jr., who was much indebted, to obtain an equitable lien on two sections of land, referring to the same land deeded to the United States by Joseph Richardville, and to Breckinridge and Coombs, by them an calling himself Joseph Richardville, jr.

At the September term of the court of common pleas of Mercer county, Ohio, Madison Sweetzer obtained a judgment against Joseph Richardville, jr., for six thousand five hundred and thirty-two dollars and eighty cents. This judgment was obtained on a promissory note, with a power of attorney, from Richardville, authorizing the confession of judgment against him on the note. An execution was issued on this judgment and placed in the hands of the sheriff of Mercer county. At the spring term, 1847, the sheriff made return that he had sold the two sections to Madison Sweetzer for $1,973 50. The court confirmed the sale, and ordered the sheriff to make a deed for the same to the purchaser.

On the third of July, 1855, Madison Sweetzer filed a declaration in the circuit court of the United States for the northern district of Ohio in an action of ejectment, and on the 15th day of March, 1856, obtained a judgment against the defendants. These defendants, with others occupying said land, now come to Congress and ask that their titles may be confirmed by buying in and extinguishing the title of Madison Sweetzer.

It is a little remarkable that the leading members of the Miami tribe should sign a treaty solemnly declaring that there was no such person as Joseph Richardville, jr., had there been such a person Îiving at the time, and that the father should make such a deed for the entire land, knowing that his son was yet living and entitled to one-half. It may be proper to state that Joseph Richardville died in 1832 or 1833, and nothing was heard of Joseph Richardville, jr., till 1844. The deed of Joseph Richardville to the United States was recorded in Mercer county in 1827. Can it be supposed that young Richardville would have slumbered on his rights for seventeen years while the land was being sold by the United States ? many things calculated to throw suspicion on this case, even had the identity of Joseph Richardville, jr., been clearly established, among wbich inay be mentioned the purchase of Breckinridge, the judgment of Sweetzer without the sifting of a trial, the small amount paid for the land, &c.

But aside from all this, the committee find insuperable objections to granting the prayer of the petitioners. By the treaty of 1826 the United States agreed to purchase this land, and, in fulfilment of this treaty obligation, the United States paid to Joseph Richardville, on the 28th day of August, 1827, the stipulated price of three thousand dollars

, and received from Joseph Richardville a deed. The committee do not deem it necessary to inquire into the validity of the deed; for by the stipulations of the treaty the United States was to be the purchaser, and no person could obtain title, and there

« AnteriorContinua »