Friday, May 07, 2010

Capt. Lieut. Thomas Simpson Of New Hampshire.

The information on Thomas Simpson, goes to show that it was fairly easy to get a pension, "however," if you find the pension is less than promised or you need a increase in your pension, "well," that is something altogether different, as you will read.

State of New Hampshire} To the Honorable the Senate and House of Representatives in General Court convened at Portsmouth on the third Wednesday of December 1786, Humbly Shews Thomas Simpson late Captain Lieutenant in the third Regiment of said state in the army of the United States, that on the fourth day ,of April 1777 he was mustering his men, then, enlisted by him, before Jonathan Child Esqr at Lyme, by special order from the Committee of Safety, and there being no public Inoculating Hospital for the small pox your Petitioner took it the natural way, & suffered the irreparable loss of one of his Eyes.

That afterwards your petitioner being anxious to serve his Country, took his Command & joined the army that on the seventh day of October in the same year in the Action at Bemus' s Heights, he received a musket ball on the right side of his Belly, which ball he carries in him to this day after which he retired upon furlough for a season, at the expiration of which, he rejoined his Regiment-that in February 1778, your petitioner received another dangerous wound in his leg, which occasioned Col , Dearborn, then commanding General Poors Brigade to furlough your Petitioner for a certain time at the expiration of which he found himself incapable to join the army, & afterwards the petitioner wrote for a discharge, which was granted by his Excellency President Sullivan, then a Major-General in the Army of the United States.

Afterwards the Petitioner prayed the Honorable General Court for Half pay which was granted immediately but afterwards by some misunderstanding, the Committee informed your Petitioner that he was struck off the Pay Roll and as your Honors will never remain unconcernd spectators, of the wants, sufferings & Scars of the worn out soldier he therefore prays your Honors to take his case into your wise consideration and Reinstate him in his scanty pittance of Half Pay or make him such considerations, as may serve to alleviate his sufferings administer to his wants and compensate his toils that he may have occasion to express in strains of Gratitude the liberality of that Country, in whose service he has spent the best of his days and in whose defense he has more than once shed, chearfully the crimson fluid of Life and your Petitioner as in duty bound will ever pray.

Thomas Simpson.

"The Committee on the Petitions of Sick & wounded Officers and Soldiers having considered the within Petition of Thomas Simpson a Wounded Officer late belonging to the Regiment of the New Hampshire line beg leave to Report that the said Thomas Simpson have and receive one half of his Monthly pay to commence at the time he was struck off the rolls of Pensioners & that he be enrolled as an Invalid Pensioner accordingly which is submitted."

New Hampshire . "This may certify that Thomas Simpson served as a Captain Lieutenant in Col. Scammel's regiment-that he has produced sufficient evidence that while in the service of the United States he received a wound by a ball which is still lodged in his body that it appears . by the testimony of several of his neigbors on oath that he is rendered an Invalid by said wound & that we judge him to be entitled to a pension of forty shillings
per month, to commence from this day."

Joseph Gilman.


War OFFICE, April 23, 1790.

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 wounds 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-pox; that lie was badly wounded in two separate actions, and that a musket ball still remains in his body and that he is entirely incapacitated from obtaining his livelihood by labor.

That, notwithstanding his sufferings, he has been allowed by the State of New Hampshire only one-quarter, instead of one-half, of his full pay, to which he s of opinion he is entitled.

That besides the low rate of his pension, it has been paid to him in a species of depreciated certificates, for which he has not received more than five shillings in the pound.

He therefore prays that Congress would direct that he should receive the amount of his half-pay from the 21st day of September, 1782, or such part 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 a hard one indeed; but as it has been considered and decided upon by the Legislature of New Hampshire, who bad completely .the power to increase the pension, if 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 dictate 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 invalids by the respective States, or under the authority of the same; that, if a precedent of such modification should be once established by Congress, it would most probably involve applications from every individual receiving a less pension than the amount of half-pay.

H. KNOX, Secretary of War.

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