Posts Tagged ‘National Soldiers’ Home’

The young soldier and his wife married at First Baptist Church of Hampton in 1866. They had seven children. He described his interactions with the infamous Walter Plecker, M.D.

Invalid – 951,753 / 1,014,225
Widow – 15,851,128 / A-9-12-27, Julia A. Edwards

Marriage License [copy], Allen Edwards and Julia Ann Ash, 1 September 1866
License issued on 1 September 1866; couple married 2 September 1866 at Elizabeth City Co., Va.; Allen was 23 years old; Julia was 18 years old. Both were single. Both were born in Isle of Wight Co., Va.; both resided in Elizabeth City Co., Va. Allen worked as laborer. His parents were Jack and Susan Edwards. Julia’s parents were George Scott and Sarah Ash. The officiant was Young Jackson.

Claimant’s Affidavit, Allen Edwards, 9 January 1892
49 years old; residence, Hampton, Elizabeth City Co., Va.; post-office address, Hampton, Virginia
“My leg was broken at Hampton, Va. in March 1888 while working on the C & ORR tressel [sic], under contractor J.C. White. Was attended by Dr. Charles of Newport News, Va.”

General Affidavit, Allen Edwards, 28 April 1897
59 years old; post-office address, National Soldiers Home, Va.
“That I was in the habit of signing my own name prior to my impaired vision … my eyesight was impaired to such a degree that I deemed it practicable to sign by mark”

Questionnaire (Form 3-173), Allen Edwards, 23 December 1897
[living children] 7. all living. May Eliza, born Sept 24, 1870; Elizabeth, born Feb 13, 1873; Sarah Martha, born June 30, 1874; Aron, born Feb 18, 1878; Louvinana, born Jan 10, 1881; Ennis, born Dec 11, 1886; Delia A., born Oct 2, 1889″

General Affidavit, Allen Edwards, 8 January 1898
60 years old; residence, National Soldiers Home, Elizabeth City Co., Va.; post-office address, National Soldiers Home, Va
“That he was rejected three times by the Examining Boards at the National Soldiers Home and that he verily believes that said Medical Board is hostile to the colored veterans … Dr. Plecker, one of the Examining Board told him ‘he, the doctor could not give no man a pension or rate him in a pensionable degree, who reported for the first time, even if he the soldier-applicant was a disabled in a pensionable degree.’ The next time the Dr. said ‘I thought you were drawing a pension .’ He further states that he would like to be examined at Washington, DC.”
[Note: His witnesses were Thomas Ash and Robert Ash, likely related to his wife — Leslie]

General Affidavit, Stephen Riddick, 4 September 1900
about 73 years old; residence, Berkley, Norfolk Co., Va.; post-office address, Berkley, Norfolk Co., Va.
“That they were tentmates … that he has seen said Edwards from time to time since the War”

General Affidavit, Edmund G. Jones, 5 September 1900
58 years old; residence, Hampton, Elizabeth City Co., Va.
“I was in Company B of the same Regiment … At Camp Hampton said Edwards was thrown from a horse during a drill charge. Capt. J.L. Whiteman was in command that day”

Deposition, Allen Edwards, 16 August 1902
about 61 years old; occupation, farming;
“served as corporal … I was born in Nansemond Co., Va. about six or seven miles from Chuckatuck. Can’t give you the year of my birth. Was born a slave to Billy Green (dead). My father’s name was Jack Edwards and he was a slave to Dr. Ned Phillips of Suffolk, Va. My mother’s name was Silvie Ann Edwards and she was a slave to my master … My full and correct name is Allen Edwards and I have never been known under any other name.
“I was about 24 years of age when I enlisted … at Hampton, Va. and was sworn in at City Point, Va. … [mustered out] at Brazos Santiago, Texas. Immediately after I was discharged I came back to Newport News whence I enlisted and have resided in this vicinity ever since … mustache tinged with gray. Has a small scar to right of right eye (rt.) caused from a piece of wood striking me there while cutting wood soon after discharge … Our colonel was Garrard — Lt … forgot unless it was “Seipp” — Major was Brown and so was Seipp — Captain was Whiteman — 1st Lt was Hart — 2d Lt … forgot — Orderly Sgt Tom Pitt and he had a brother in our company named Ned Pitt.
[Note: Ned Pitt / Edward R. Pitt, my great-great-grandfather and his older brother Tom Pitt / William Thomas Pitt served in 1st U.S. Colored Cavalry. — Leslie]

“I tented with 2 duty Sgt Albert Jones (dead) and Jerry Wilkins. I was not in any battle but got in a skirmish up the Chickahominy River, Va. about six or seven months after my enlistment. We went up there with the 3 NY Cav.

“My witnesses were Jordan Christian and another man whose name I forget … Mr. John Palmer formerly of the Soldiers Home and then [illegible] wrote up for me but I didn’t pay either anything.”

“I have been married twice but my first wife ran away the first year I went in the army. Her name was Rachel Thomas. I don’t know whether she is a slave or dead or where she is. I was married to my present wife Julia Ann Starch at Newport News (Warwick Co.) then Elizabeth City Co., Va. and there is a record of same at Court House in latter county. We were married on 1st Sunday in Sept. in 1866 by Elder Jackson a Baptist preacher. I have two children under 16 (she had never been previously married).
“Inez born Dec 11, 1886 (boy)
Delia born Oct 2, 1889 (girl)
(Both are living here with me)
[Note: Delia Ann Edwards was a witness — Leslie]

Declaration for Pension, Allen Edwards, 27 March 1925
“79 years old … he was born Does not remember [the date] at Isle of Wight Co. Va”
[Note: He and his witnesses lived at “National Soldiers Home, Va.” – Leslie]

[married] yes, Julia Ann Ash Edwards
[when, where, by whom] 1866 Sep Newport News, Va. by Elder Jackson
[record] license
[previously married] no

Sworn Statement, Delia Lattimore, 9 November 1925
“She has known the claimant (Allen Edwards) over 30 years and that for more than one year last past has helped, aided and assisted him by rubbing him with liniment from his shoulders to his feet and in dressing and still continues to do so daily. He returned to his home from the National Home, Va. so as to receive aid, help and assistance without cost as he did not have enough money for his family and to pay those who helped him in the Home.”

Sworn Statement, Julia A. Edwards, 9 November 1925
“She is the wife of the claimant (Allen Edwards) and that for the last past several years has aided, helped and assisted him in bathing, dressing, applying liniment … particularly frequent since his return from the National Soldiers Home, Va. where he was about one year. He returned to his home as he was unable to to pay help that he received there and care for us at home.”

Letter written by W.E. Atkins, M.D., Hampton, Virginia [letterhead] “To Whom It May Concern,” 14 December 1925
“This is to certify that I have known Mr. Allen Edwards, 468 Holt Street, Hampton, Va. for nearly thirty years. He is apparently 75 years old.”

Sworn Statement, Allen Edwards, 23 January 1926
“That in the First Baptist Church, Newport News, Va. on the First Sunday in September 1866 I and Julia Ann Milton were wedded by Elder Jackson”

Death Certificate, Allen Edwards, 12 June 1927
[address] 468 Holt St., Hampton, Va.
[sex, color, status] “m … col … married”
[date of birth / age] “don’t know … About 58”
[occupation] laborer
[birthplace] Isle of Wight Co
[father’s name / birthplace] John Edwards / Isle of Wight Co.
[mother’s name / birthplace] [blank] / [blank]
[informant] Julia Edwards, Hampton, Va.
[date of death] June 12, 1927
[attended by physician] November 16, 1926 to June 12, 1927
[cause of death] carcinoma sigmoid, 10 years
[physician] Edw. M. Mickels, M.D., Phoebus, Va.
[burial] National Home Cemetery, June 15, 1927
[undertaker] W.T. Smith & Sons, Hampton, Va.

Sworn Statement, John B. Jones, 1 August 1927
76 years old
“That he has known Allen Edwards, and now his widow, Julia Edwards previous to 1890”

Sworn Statement, Solomon Brown, 11 August 1927
74 years old
“That he knew Allen Edwards (now deceased) and now his widow Julia Edwards, since 1890 as man and wife”

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Well after the Civil War, this veteran’s right foot was amputated at the National Soldiers Home hospital. Until that time, he had worked as a brick mason, an occupation that requires advanced mathematical skills and knowledge of building and construction. Those who vouched for him included former employees, neighbors, comrades in arms, and fellow residents of the National Soldiers Home.

Invalid — 985,606 / 990,988

Declaration for Invalid Pension, Beverly West, 29 October 1890
64 years old; residence, Norfolk, Va.; post-office address, 22 Cleaveland St., Norfolk, Virginia
“Also personally appeared Charles Bell residing at Norfolk and Cornelius Gray residing at Norfolk, Va. … their acquaintance with him for 27 and 27 years respectively”

Claimant’s Affidavit, Beverly West, 8 July 1891
60 years old; post-office address, Norfolk, Va. General Delivery
“was honorably discharged as Orderly Sargt”

Deposition, Beverly West, 14 June 1893
61 years old; occupation, brick mason; residence, 9 Hampton Court, Norfolk, Norfolk Co., Va.
“Mr. W.R. Drury was the first man who ever did any writing for me in a pension claim. … I did know Charles Bell. He is dead. I do not know Columbus Grey. I never had either of those men as a witness according to my recollection no. I was a witness for Charles Bell. I do not know B.A. Richardson, Jr., Notary Public … I have also had Mrs. Lockwood as my attorney; I gave her a power of attorney after Drury dropped the case.”

Deposition, Cornelius Grey, 3 July 1893
about 51 years old; occupation, oyster opener; residence, 122 Princess Anne Ave., Norfolk, Va.
“I know Beverly West very well”

Declaration for Invalid Pension, Beverly West, 13 January 1898
65 years old; residence, Norfolk, Norfolk Co., Va.; post-office address, No. 9 Hampton Court, Norfolk, Norfolk Co., Va.
“Also personally appeared Phillip Bagwell residing at No. 3 North Street, Huntersville, Norfolk County, Virginia and Frank Leary residing at 59 Scot St., Norfolk, Va. …. their acquaintance with him for 25 years and 35 years, respectively”

General Affidavit, Beverly West, 20 February 1902
69 years old; residence, National Soldiers Home, Va.; post-office address, National Soldiers Home, Va.
“I lost my right foot by amputation in February 1899. It was amputated in the Hospital National Soldiers Home, Va. … Do not know what caused the sores on the toes which resulted in amputation of the foot.”

General Affidavit, George Washington and Isaac Reddick, 20 February 1902
[Washington] 80 years; residence, National Soldiers Home, Virginia;
[Reddick] 58 years old; residence, National Soldiers Home, Virginia;
“We have each known the claimant, Beverly West, the past 30 years, and the past 25 years respectively. We all worked together at one time in Norfolk, Va. …. we have known him to be a sober, temperate, upright, & peaceable man … He was a brick mason for many years in Norfolk, Va. during which time we worked for him & he was always complaining about his right foot & often had to walk with a stick & had great trouble in getting on the scaffold”
“He was always known where he lived in Norfolk, Va. as an industrious, hard-working and sober, temperate man, as hundreds can well testify to.”

Declaration for Pension, Beverly West, 9 March 1907
“Height, 5 feet 10 inches; complexion, bacon color; color of eyes, black; color of hair, black; that his occupation was brick mason; that he was born Sept. 1832 at Norfolk, Va.
“That his several places of residence since leaving the service have been as follows: Norfolk, Va. and Nat. Sol. Home, Va.
“Also personally appeared G. Isay, residing in Nat. Sol. Home, Va. and Frank Burghardt, residing in Nat. Sol. Home, Va. … their acquaintance with him of 4 years and 4 years respectively”

Southern Branch, National Home for D.V.S., 8 May 1907
“[Beverly West] died at Southern Branch on the 8 day of May, 1907
Cause of death, Septicoemia
Social condition, Widower
[next of kin] Sister in law, Mrs. Adaline West, No. 11 Evaline St., Norfolk, Va.”

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During his service, this soldier sustained a gunshot wound and a sabre cut. His surname was mangled upon enlistment and he blamed himself for not pronouncing it clearly. His parents were enslaved but it’s not known whether they were enslaved by the same person. There’s no indication that he’s related to Frederick Powell alias Frederick Powers also of Company K. Research notes from Frederick’s pension application will be available soon.

Invalid — 773,647 / 996,421

General Affidavit, Benjamin Powers, 9 March 1891
52 years old
“When he filed his claim he tried to tell his writer that his name was Benjamin F. Powers but that he was misunderstood by said writer and it was made to appear as Benjamin F. Powell that he makes this Declaration for the purpose of setting his proper name before the Pension Bureau and requests that the roles [sic] … be searched to find the same. That he is unable to spell his name and thinks the mistake is due to his not being able to pronounce the word Powers properly and his pronunciation sounded like Powell.”

General Affidavit, Benjamin F. Powers, 21 March 1891
52 years old; 392 Market St., Norfolk, Va.
“That while at what is known as Ballahack Virginia, shortly after his enlistment from exposure he was taken with rheumatism … also while in Texas his eyes became affected that he was attended by Dr. Manly, his Reg Surgeon, that he has been quite poor since his discharge often unable to to do any manual labor and unable to employ any medical attention and has depended on usual remedies found in drug stores; that he is an unlettered and ignorant man and cannot remember dates and cannot tell even the present year whether it is 1891, 1871, or 1861. All he knows is the above and that he is now afflicted and suffering and unable to provide support from manual labor”

General Affidavit, Samuel B, Humphries and Peter Fentress, 16 July 1892
[Humphries] 48 years old;
“That they knew Benjamin Powers and said Benjamin Powers served … that he was honorably discharged in Brazos Texas and paid off at City Point, Virginia

Deposition, Benjamin F. Powell, 11 January 1893
52 years old; occupation, farmer, post-office address, 39 East Market Square, Norfolk, Va.
W.R. Drury, my attorney swore me and my witnesses Jerry Wilkins & Peter Fentress

Deposition, Jerry Wilkins, 11 January 1893
70 years old; occupation, laborer; residence and post-office address, 101 Charles St., Norfolk, Va.
“I have known the claimant … since about August 1864 … we served together from that time on until the company was mustered out of service in Feby 1864 and we have been associates ever since”

General Affidavit, Armistead Goodwin and John Elliott, 21 March 1896
[Goodwin] 49 years old; residence, Broad Creek, Princess Anne Co., Va.; post-office address, Broad Creek, Va.
[Elliott] 57 years old; residence, Princess Anne Co., Va.; post-office address, Broad Creek, Va.
“That they have known claimant for 28 and 6 years, respectively; that they see him almost every day… that they all live very near to each other”

Questionnaire (Form 3-173), Benjamin Powers, 12 December 1898
[married] Mary Powers; Mary Cook
[when, where, by whom] about 25 or 30 years ago; in Norfolk County, Va.; Rev. Mr. Jackson
[record] marriage register, Norfolk County, Va. clerk’s office
[previously married] no
[living children? birth dates?]
Peter Powers, Jr. born Jany 4th, 1880
Rosa Powers, born May 12th, 1881
Fannie Powers, born Mch 8th, 1884

Questionnaire (Form 3-493), Benjamin Powers, 9 September 1899
[residence, closest post-office] 302 Effingham St., Portsmouth, Va.; same
[residence after discharge] Wise Farm, Princess Anne Co, Va.; various farms in Princess Anne Co., until moved to Portsmouth, Va., January 1899
[post-office nearest to each residence] Kempsville, Va. about nearest in Princess Anne Co. but always got mail at King & Mosley’s [?], Norfolk, Va.
[occupation since discharge] farm laborer
[known by any other name?] none
[military or naval service under another name] none

General Affidavit, Samuel B. Humphries and Elijah Simmons, 3 October 1899
[Humphries] 56 years old; residence, Norfolk, Va.; post-office address, 72 Mosely St.
[Simmons] 77 years old; residence, Norfolk, Va.; post-office address, 169 St. Paul’s St.
“That they have been well and intimately acquainted with the claimant for about 35 and 13 years, respectively; that during that period they have lived for the greater portion of the time in the same community and have been thrown much in each other’s company’ that during the last three or four years they have seen him very often”

Physician’s Affidavit, W.L. French, MD, 22 December 1898
post-office address, 694 Church St., Norfolk, Va.
“I have attended him several times for the named diseases below during that period … for several years when I practiced in Princess Anne County, Va.. in the year of 1884 up until the present time … he has also been shot in the left wrist and has also a sabre cut on the left thumb which has more or less caused him much inconvenience in using the same”

Deposition, Benjamin F. Powers, 6 May 1902
about 56 years old; occupation, farmer; residence and post-office address, 85 Johnson Avenue, Norfolk, Va.
“I was born in Surry Co., Va. so I was told but I can’t tell you near what town I was born as I was too young to know anything when I left Surry Co. I was born a slave to Nelson Hall of Surry Co. My father’s name was Dick Powell and he was a slave to some man but I can’t tell you anything about that. My mother’s name was Lucy Powell and she was a slave to somebody but I can’t tell the name. I just go by whatever folks told me as both of my parents died when I was quite young. My full and correct name is Benjamin Powell and the only way I can account for the Benjamin F. Powers being added to the name is that Drewry apparently had trouble in understanding the name as I pronounced it and he put the F in the middle too. In the army too there was a Fred Powells or maybe Powers and I was a Benjamin they had me put the F in there also. I was born 50 or 60 years ago but can’t possibly tell you the exact year of m birth. My correct name is Benjamin Powell and I go under under my name generally.”
“Immediately after my discharge I came to Norfolk and have resided in this vicinity ever since. I have not had my original discharge certificate as it was in my trousers when I had them washed one day and all the writing on the discharge and in fact the whole paper was destroyed after it came out of the wash.”
“I was in the battle of Deep Bottom, Va. but can’t give date. One man out of our company was killed there also but I can’t think of his name. There were no officers killed.”

Marriage License [copy], Benjamin Powell and Margaret Williams, 25 September 1902
license issued on 25 September 1902; couple married 25 September 1902 at Norfolk Co., Va.; Benjamin was 56 years old, Margaret was 55 years old. Benjamin was widowed; Margaret was single. Both were born in Surrey Co., Va.; both resided in Norfolk Co., Va. Benjamin worked as a laborer. His parents were Dick and Lucy Powell, Margaret’s parents were James Weaver and Mary. The officiant was George Washington of Ebenezer Baptist Church.

General Affidavit, Benj F. Powers, 23 June 1905
residence, Princess Anne County, Va.; post-office address, Waterway, Va.
“That he is unable to furnish any public or church record evidence of his birth as there is no such record that he knows of; that if there is any family bible or plantation record he knows nothing of it”

Declaration for Pension, Benjamin Powers, 2 March 1907
65 years old; residence, Waterway, Princess Anne County, Virginia; post-office address, Waterway, Norfolk County, Virginia …. occupation was farming … born 1841 at Surry County, Va.
“Also personally appeared Hillard Johnson, residing in Norfolk, Va. and John White, residing in Norfolk, Va. … their acquaintance with him of 40 years and 40 years, respectively”

National Home for Disabled Volunteer Soldiers, Southern Branch, 27 February 1912
Post Office Address: National Soldiers’ Home, Virginia
“Benjamin F. Powers alias Powell … died at Southern Branch on the 23 day of February 1912; cause of death , acute cardiac dilatation; social condition, widower … The name, address and degree of relationship of his next of kin, so far as indicated by the records of the Home, are as follows: Daughter, Maggie Powers, Portsmouth, Va.”

Application for Accrued Pension, Margaret Powell, 27 March 1912
residence and post-office address, 604 Church St., Huntersville, Norfolk, Va.
“She was married to the said Benj Powell on the 25 day of September 1902 at Norfolk Co., Va.; that her name before said marriage was Margaret Williams.
“Also personally appeared Rachel Mahone residing at 604 Church St., Norfolk, Va. and J.S.C. Furness residing at Phoebus, Virginia …. that they know her to be the lawful widow of Benj Powell who died on the 23 day of Febry 1912″

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“Established in 1867, the Central Branch, National Home for Disabled Volunteer Soldiers in Dayton, Ohio (now the Dayton Veterans Affairs Medical Center) was one of the three original branches in the National Home system, which provided medical and rehabilitative care to Union veterans after the Civil War.”
See the complete article at National Park Service: Central Branch Dayton, Ohio.

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The veteran settled in Norfolk, Virginia when his service ended and several comrades-in-arms offered supporting depositions for his pension claim. As it happened, his application was handled by an attorney who had a reputation for questionable practices. More research is required to find out why he was transferred from the National Soldiers Home in Virginia to the National Soldiers Home near Dayton, Ohio in 1919.

Invalid — 886,276 / 663,860

Deposition A, Charles Jones, 10 May 1893
about 60 years old; occupation, cook; residence and post-office address, 243 Queen St., Norfolk, Va.
“Q. Who was your attorney in the presentation of your claim under the Act of June 27, 1890?
A. Mr. W.R. Drury of Norfolk, Va.
‘Q. Who was present when you made out your claim?
A. Doctor Johnson or Johnson Doctor … He was my identifying witness. Jubilee was to be one but he never got there that day. He was there the day before.”
“Q. Do you know S. Cherry?
A. No, sir.”

Deposition B, Oscar Jubilee, 11 May 1893
54 years old; occupation, laborer; residence and post-office address, 30 Lee St., Barboursville, Norfolk, Va.
“I think I was a witness that he was in my company. I went with him before Mr. W.R. Drury of this city.”
“Q. Who was the other identifying witness?
A. I think Dick Grant and Owen Woodus, who are both dead, but I don’t remember.”

Questionnaire (Form 3402), Charles Jones, 12 March 1898
“[Married?] Yes. Her full name is Emily Jones. Her maiden name was Emily Butcher.
[Where, when, by whom] August 12, 1875 in Norfolk, Va. by Rev. Lyons.
[Living children] I have no children, living or dead.”

General Affidavit, John Moore and Albert Merchant, 28 July 1894
[Moore] 51 years old; residence, 28 Allyntowne Road, Norfolk, Norfolk Co., Va.
[Merchant] 67 years old; residence, 172 Cumberland Street, Norfolk, Norfolk Co., Va.
“That they are both well acquainted with Charles Jones … have known him for at least thirty (30) years during which time witnesses have lived near claimant and would see him on average two times each week. They say that claimant is a man of sober habits and regular and temperate in his mode of living”

Deposition, Charles Jones, 21 February 1902
about 60 years old; occupation, cook; residence, 313 Queen St., Norfolk, Va.
“I was born in Clark [sic] County, Virginia and I was a slave: was owned by Richard Parker but his sister married a Crenshaw of Charles City Co., Va., and they fell heir to me. My father was Wm. Jones…. I was in the army one or two years. I was discharged shortly after Christmas the year after Richmond fell.”
“I have only been married once: married Emily Jones in Norfolk, Va., in three years after my discharge. We were married by Rev. Lyons. My wife had never been previously married. We have no children.”

General Affidavit, Charles Jones, 25 January 1908
70 years old; residence, Norfolk, Norfolk County, Virginia; post-office address, 313 Queen St., Norfolk, Va.
“I count my age from what my owner told me before the war which makes me now over 70 years old but my white people are all either dead or moved and there is no way I can prove my age.”

Questionnaire (Form 3-389), Charles Jones, 7 April 1915
[Wife] Emily Jones — died 10 April 1909 at Norfolk, Va.

Letter from Charles Jones, National Soldiers Home, Va. to the Commissioner of Pensions, Washington, DC, 31 January 1917
“I was born in 1841.”

(Form 81), Central Branch, National Home for D.V.S., National Military Home, Ohio, 25 November 1918
“Charles Jones … was Transf’d to this Branch on the 8 day of Nov. 1918 from Southern Branch.”

Form 37, Central Branch, National Home for Disabled Volunteer Soldiers, 17 August 1919
“Charles Jones … died at Central Branch on the 17 day of July, 1919. Cause of death, mitral insufficiency, Social Condition, widower. The name, address and degree of relationship of his next of kin, so far as indicated by the records of this Home, are as follows: Cousin, Mrs. William Rowe, 124 Mallory St., Phoebus, Virginia”

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