#1 - Horse Thieves and Deserters (here)#2 - Red Tape (here)
#3 - Pennsylvanian Inquires After His Dead Son (here)
#4 - Ohio Military Home (here)
#5 - Squirrel Hunters (here)
#6 - "The Buddy System" (here)
#7 - A Dependent Mother (here)
And now on to the latest installment of Civil War pension/disability items in my collection...
Among the barriers facing disabled veterans of the Civil War was in securing a living by manual labor, especially if their disability prevented them from doing so.
Some disabled veterans sought to make a living by peddling (I have written about that before, here). In many states, peddling required a license; however, many states also had laws on the books waiving the license fee for honorably discharged soldiers whose disabilities prevented them from securing other work.
Interestingly, some states and counties still allow for this (!) - as an example, see this page from the Duchess County (New York) website (here) describing how peddling fees are waived for veterans of wars and conflicts since WWII.
Indeed, there is a lot more to the story of peddling and Civil War veterans - a veritable tangle of politics, bureaucracy, law, and medicine - and it will be the subject of my next "Medical Department" column in Civil War News.
Until, then, enjoy the images and transcripts below from an item in my collection detailing an Ohio veteran whose Pennsylvania peddling fees were waived.
(An added benefit - I learned a new word: "Prothonotary"...there are sereval specific definitions, but generally it means "the first notary of the Court. The Prothonotary is the keeper of the civil records for the court system.")
Bedford, PA April 9, 1890
This is to certify that I have carefully examined Gordon Hammer late a private of Co. E. 13th Ohio Cavalry and find that he is unable to procure his living by manual labor and entitled to a peddlers license under the laws of Pennsylvania.
C. P. Calhoun, M.D.
Pres't Pension Examiners, Bedford Co.
Bedford County (SS?)
Gordon Hammer being duly sworn says that he is the bona fide owner of the goods wares and merchandise in his own right which he proposes to peddle hawk and vend and that he will not engage to sell the same for any other person or persons.
Sworn and subscribed before me this 9th day April 1890
Josiah Amos (iIllegible...possibly abbreviation for Prothonotary)
To the Honorable the Judges of the Court of Quarter Sessions of the Peace in and for the County of Bedford
The petition of Gordon Hammer respectfully represents that he is an honorably discharged soldier of the United States; served in the war of 1861 for the suppression of the rebellion; that he is a resident of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and a native thereof; that on account of diseases contracted whilst in the service aforesaid he is unable to procure his living by manual labor; that he herewith exhibits a certificate from Dr. C. P. Calhoun an Examining Surgeon of the United States setting forth; that said Hammer is unable to procure his living by manual labor; also his affidavit to be filed in the office of the Prothonotary setting forth that he is the bona fide owner of the goods wares and merchandise in his own right which he proposes to hawk peddle and vend and that he will (not?) engage to sell or peddle the same for any other person or persons whomsoever.
He therefore prays that a license may be issued to him to hawk peddle and vend any goods wares and merchandise within the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.
And he will ever pray and etc.
Bedford County (SS?)
Gordon Hammer being duly sworn says the facts set forth in the foregoing petition are correct and true.
Sworn and subscribed
9th April 1890
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