Pension Denied

Have you ever felt like it took forever to have an application processed, like one might ‘die’ before getting a benefit? Well, that’s exactly what happened to Mary Reed with her application for a widow’s pension after the death of her husband during the civil war.

A ‘Declaration for Widow’s Army Pension’ dated in 1867 shows where Mary Reed applied for a pension.

Declaration for Widow’s Army Pension
State of Indiana
County of Tipton
On this Fifth day of February, A.D. one thousand eight hundred and sixty seven personally appeared before me George W [Bould] Notary Public of the Circuit Court within and for the county and state aforesaid Mary Reed a resident of New Berlin in the County of Clinton and State of Indiana aged 74 years, who being first duly sworn according to law, doth on her oath, make the following the declaration in order to obtain the benefit of the provisions made by the act of Congress, approved July 14, 1862. That she is the widow of John Reed who enlisted in the service of the United States at Indianapolis in the state of Indiana on the _ day of 186, as a Corporal in Company 7E commanded by Capt Hubard in the 7th Regiment of Indiana VOls in the war of 1861; who while in the service aforesaid, in the line of his duty, died of disease contracted while in the service at Memphis in the State of Tennessee on the 15 day of August A.D. 1864. She further declares that she was married to the said John Reed in the County of Jennings and State of Indiana on th 22 day of December in the year 1822 that her name before her said marriage was Mary Rodgers. That her husband, the aforesaid John Reed, died on the day above mentioned and that she has remained a widow ever since that period, as will more fully appear by reference to the proof hereto annexed. …
That the said John Reed deceased leaving no children under the age of sixteen years of age
certified copy of marriage license on file second Auditors office Washington City DC to which you are refered
She also declares that she has not, in any manner, been engaged in or aided or abetted the rebellion in the United States. She hereby appoints Dan [Waugh] of Tipton State of Indiana, her true and lawful Attorney with full power of substitution to prosecute this claim for pension, and to receive the certificate which may be issued therefor. She requests that her pension be paid at Indianapolis, State of Indian. Her post office address is Berlin County of Clinton, State of Indiana
Signature: Mary (her mark) Reed
Signature of Witnesses: Anthony Holmes
George Young

Also personally appeared Anthony Holmes and George Young residents of near Berlin County of Clinton State of Indiana whom I certify to be respectable and entitled to credit, and who being by me first duly sworn, say they were present and saw Mary Reed sign her name Mary Reed to the foregoing declaration and power of attorney; and they further swear that they have every reason to believe, from the appearance of the applicant and their acquaintance with her, that she is the identical person she represents herself to be; that they have been well acquainted with her and her said husband John Reed deceased, for sixteen year and know they lived together as husband and wife so reputed in the neighborhood in they lived up to the time of his (deceased) death

Anthony Holmes
George Young
Sworn, to acknowledged and subscribed before me, this 5th day of February 1867 and I hereby certify that the contents of the foregoing declaration of claimant and affidavit of witnesses was made known to each of them before administering the oath, and that I have no interest, direct or indirect in the prosecution of this claim.
George W. Boulden
Notary Public

Then in 1869, there is a statement by a physician indicating that Mary Reed died in 1867.

State of Indiana
County of Clinton
This certifies that I William Farrer of a practicing physician of the County of Clinton and State of Indiana attended Mary Reed widow of the late John Reed who was a corporal in Co K 7th Cavalry Indiana Vol and that the said Mary Reed died on the 14th day of February 1867 and further states that he has no interest in the prosecution of claim for pension.
William Farrar MD
John W Lydy
Subscribed and sworn to this 10th day of December A.D. 1869 Witness my hand and seal.
Aaron Ford
Notary Public

This is to certify that I Aaron Ford a Notary Public in and for Clinton county and state of Indiana am personaly acquainted with William Farrer and know him to be a regular practicing physician and of good reputation.

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Worthey of full faith and credit and made th above affidavit from his personal knowledge of the facts therein set forth.
Aaron Ford
Notary Public

Which is ironic since the pension file contains an inquiry from Mary Reed about the status of her application. The inquiry is dated December 1868.

Pickard’s Indiana December 12th 1868
Chris C. Cox Pension Commissioner
Sir, You will please inform me what evidence is required if any in my claim for pension which was filed in your office sometime in the year 1866 by Daniel Waugh of Tipton Indiana I have not means of ascertaining the exact time that it was filed. I am the widow of John Reed who was a private in CO ‘K’ 7th Regt Inda Cal Vol
Direct Pickard’s Mills
Clinton County

I remain your most obedient servant
Mary Reed
Care of Col
Noah N Shaffer

Then in 1871 is a ‘Widow’s Pension’ document that indicates her application was rejected because of her death.

War of the Rebellion
act of July 14, 1862 and subsequent acts
Widow’s Pension
(Original without Increase)

Mary Reed (deceased, widow of
John Reed Rank Copl
Company K 7th
Regiment Ind Cav

Residence of Administrator Clinton county, and State of Ind.
Post office: Berlin, Clinton Co. Ind
Attorney: Geo H. Ziegler, Indianapolis Ind

No contract, and material evidence filed since July 8, 1870

Rate of pension 48.00 commencing August 19 1864 the date
of soldiers death, and ending February 14 1867, the date
of widow’s death

Rejt March 11 1871 F A Smith, Examiner
Rej March 24 71 [HSM], Receiver

Dates Shown by Papers
Enlistment, Sept 7, 1863 Widow’ s app. filed May 13 1867
Muster into rank Sept 11, 1863 Claim completed Feb 25 1871
Discharge no Marriage to soldier Dec 9 1822
Death Aug 18 1864 Re-marriage of claimany Died Feb 14 1867
Invalid app filed no
Invalid last paid to No

Cause of death, Chronic Diarrhea Place of Death MemphisTenn

Incidental Matter
Affit of Attg Physician shows widow died Feb 14 1867
John Ricketts of Berlins Ind was appt Administrator Aug
30 1869 of the estate of Mary Reed (dec’d) as shown by cert from Clerk of the Court of Common Please of Clinton Co Ind

Prior marriage of herself or soldier; No
No children of soldier; under 16 year of age
Loyalty: Loyal Declaration