Report on the Petition of Thomas Simpson

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CollectionNational Archives and Records Administration: 1st Cong, House, Sec War Reports, RG233 view image
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Document Information
Date May 23, 1790
Author Name Henry Knox (primary) Location: War Office
Recipient Name [not available]
Summary Report - New Hampshire allowed 1/4 to 1/2 full pay for Simpson due to his injuries. Duties of state and federal government discussed.
Document Format Document Signed
Document Notes [not available]
Content Notes [not available]
Related Persons/Groups Henry Knox; Thomas Simpson; Secretary of War; invalid; pensioner; New Hampshire Line; Congress; Ruth Roberts; ;
Related Places War Office; New Hampshire; ;
Keywords petition; late war; pension; allowance; eye; small pea; badly wounded; quarter pay; half pay; certificate; ;
Key Phrases [not available]

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79 Pay1 Cong 2 SessionCopy [of?] pageThos. SimpsonApril 23-1790
ClaimsVol 1 page 18 No 71st Congress
Brooks (page 131 Sec 7)
7 1 all
The Secretary for the Department of War, to whom was referred the petition of Thomas Simpson Reports,
That the petitioner states that he served as an Officer in the New Hampshire line from an early period of the late War, until the year 1779, when by his [undecipherable] being rendered unfit for further duty, he was honorably discharged as a Captain Lieutenant.
That while in service he lost an eye by the small pea. That he was badly wounded in two separate actions, & that a musket ball still remains in his body and that he is entirely incapacitated from obtaining his livelihood by labor.
That, notwithstanding his suffering he has been allowed by the State of New Hampshire only one quarter instead of one half of his full pay, to which he is of opinion he is entitled.
That besides the low rate of his pension it has been paid to him in a specie of depreciated certificates for which he has not received more than five shillings in the pound.
He therefore prays that Congress would declare that he should receive the amount of his half pay from the 21st day of September 1782, or such first thereof, as they may think just, making a reasonable deduction for the sums he has already received.
On this petition the Secretary of War observes that the case of the petitioner as stated by himself appears
to be an hard one indeed. But as it has been considered & decided upon by the legislature of New Hampshire, who had completely the power to increase the pension of they conceived the petitioner entitled thereto, it would be improper to form a judgment upon an ex parte hearing, especially to disapprove the conduct of a state upon the allegation of an individual.
If the petitioner could demonstrate to the Legislature of New Hampshire, that his pension has been only one half of the sum he ought to have received, it is fairly to be presumed, the justice of the state would declare that compensation should be made for the deficiency.
The Secretary of War apprehends, that it would operate perniciously for the united states to increase or modify the pensions which have been assigned to the Invalid by the respective states or under the authority of the same. That if a precedent of such modification should be on or established by Congress as would [undecipherable] probably involve applications from every individual receiving a life pension, than the amount of half pay.
That the principles submitted in the report on the petition of Ruth Roberts the [undecipherable] of January last* against causing the judgements made by the respective states on the cases of invalids, apply to the present petition, & to which report, in order to [undecipherable] repetitions, the Secretary of War begs leave to refer.
All which is humbly submitted to the House of Representatives.
Was Office April 23rd 1790H KnoxSecretary of War

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