Valley Southern Claims Commission Papers

Southern Claims Commission: Claim of Andrew J. Acord, 1876, Claim No. 11235

Summary: Andrew J. Acord filed this claim in 1876 for $320, claiming the Union army took two horses, saddles and bridles in June 1864. Andrew was a carpenter residing in West View. He fled the Confederacy with two of his sons and fourteen others in 1864 to avoid conscription. Included is testimony to his loyalty from a Dunker minister. The Commission allowed $230.00.

Items Claimed:

Item Claimed: Amount Claimed: Amount Allowed: Amount Disallowed:
1 Mare $140.00 $100.00 $40.00
1 Mare $160.00 $120.00 $40.00
2 saddles & bridles $20.00 $10.00 $10.00

Claims Summary:

The clmt. was a carpenter, resided in Augusta Co.Va, did not vote on the question of ratifying the Ordce. of Secn., but expressed himself to his friend as opposed to it. He concealed himself to avoid the officers who sought to conscript him. Finally in June '64 he started with his two sons who were 16 & 17 years old & went to the Indiana & remained within the fedl. lines to the close of the war. In '61 he was called out with the militia, but went home the same day. Afterwards in 1864 he was conscripted & taken to camp, & in three days made his escape. He voted for Union delegates to the Convention. Two witnesses testify to his loyalty. He also claims to have given information to federal officers when he could, & to have been threatened by the rebels.

We find him loyal.

The horses were taken by a body of soldiers of Genl. Hunter's divn. when on the march to Parkersburg W.Va. & fell at once into the column.

A.O. Aldis, J.B. Howell, O. Firrin, Commrs of Claims

Testimony: Andrew J. Acord

2. I resided in West View, Augusta Co.Va. until the summer of 1864, when I with my two sons, aged respectively 17 & 16 years, went through the lines to & thence to Indiana, where I left my sons and I returned to Parkersburg W. Va. The rest of my family remained at West View, Va. I farmed some on rented land, I had only one field of 40 acres situated in the vicinity of West View.

3. I never passed the lines, except to go from the rebel lines, to the Union lines.

4. I never took any oath of any kind, and only yielded obedience, by paying tax, which I was never forced to do.

5. I took an oath to bear true faith and allegiance to the United States Government, at New Creek Station in W.Va. after I had gone through the rebel lines and no other.

6. I never was directly or indirectly or in any manner connected with the civil service of the so called Confederate States.

7. I never held any office or place of trust, honor or profit under the Confederate Government or any State or Territory subordinate thereto.

8. I never held any clerkship, or any agency or employment of any kind under, or for the benefit of the so called Confederate States. I did drive a team for 3 1/2 days, hired by P.O. Palmer, whose team was impressed.

9. I never was, in the military or naval service of the so called Confederate States, except in 1864. I was conscripted, and remained in Camp 3 days, near Staunton, and then made my escape.

10. I never held any position, or was connected with the Army, except as named in my answer to question No. 9.

11. I never was called out in the state malitia, except in 1861, was ordered to Staunton, and returned home same day.

12. I never belonged to a home guard or upon any vigilance committee or committee of safety.

13. I was conscripted by the laws and regulations of the rebel Congress, but only remained for the time specified, answer to question No. 9.

14. I never furnished a substitute for the rebel army.

15. I never in any way, belonged to any branch of the Confederate service.

16. I never was employed on any Rail road in the Confederate Service, nor aid in the transportation of soldiers, munitions of war, or supplies for the Confederate Government, except driving Palmer's impressed team for 3 1/2 days, and then hired by him.

17. I never had charge of any stores or supplies for the use of the Confederate Army or Navy, or the charge of any trains or team or teams, wagons, vessels, boats or any other craft or munitions of war for the use of the Confederate Army or Navy.

18. I never was in the service of the Confederate Government, of any kind whatsoever. I did sell some Tobacco to soldiers, as a trade of business which I did for the support of my family. I never give any information, except once to a Col. W.S. Jackson, who asked me if I knew where the Union Army where. I told him in Staunton and when he afterwards heard that I was a Union man, he tried to have me arrested, but I had left home.

19. I never, in any manner, was employed in the manufacture of munitions of war, clothing, boats, shoes, saddles, or any article whatever, nor did I ever assist others so engaged.

20. I never was directly or indirectly employed in any collections or impressments of any stores, supplies or of any article whatever for the benefit of the Confederate Government, or any State in rebellion, or the army Navy or other forces thereof. Nor had I any share or interest in any contract with, or purchases for, the Confederate government, or its Army or Navy, or any state in rebellion, or its forces.

21. I never was engaged in blockade running, or illicit traffic between the lines. I never had any interest in any goods, wares, merchandise, stores, or supplies brought into or exported from the so called Confederate states during the war.

22. I did leave the so called Confederate States, in the summer 1864. I went from my home in Augusta Co, to New Creak Station W.Va. I went to keep out of the rebel service, taking with me my two sons and sixfourteen (14) other men, I remained in the Union lines until June 1865, when I returned home. I worked at my trade (Carpenter) at the Oil Wells in W.Va.

23. I never owned any interest of any kind in any vessel or vessels used for any purpose.

24. I never was arrested, always managing to keep out of the way, of the rebels who were seeking me. I was arrested by the Union forces, in W.Va. but released in a few hours. The arrest was made to send all refugees farther west, thinking that they might make communications to the rebel forces, commanded by Genl. Rosser, but upon an investigation I was honorably released. I had taken the oath, previously at New Creek Station.

25. The Confederates did take some corn from my wife, after I had gone through the lines. She never received any pay for it.

26. I was threatened with injury to my person, if I was ever caught. After my leaving, my family were threatened to be driven through the lines.

27. I never was molested or injured except as stated in a previous answer.

28. I never did contribute any money or property in aid of the U.S. Government, or for the Union cause.

29. I never done anything for the U.S. Government, or its Army or for the Union cause during the war, except by going through the lines and taking my two sons, and 14 others, and giving to Union officers all the information I could in relation too the rebels.

30. I had one brother, James F. Acord, in the rebel army. He is now living, and resides near Mt. Solon in Augusta Co. I never furnished him with any military equipments clothing or money. I did nothing for him while he was in the rebel service.

31. I never owned any bonds or any interest or share therein, or had any shares or interest in any loans to the Confederate Government. Nor in any way did I contribute to support the credit of the so called Confederate States during the late rebellion.

32. I never voluntarily give aid & comfort to the rebellion.

33. I never was engaged in making raids into the United States, from Canada, nor in the destruction of the commerce of the United States in any lake or river, whatever.

34. I never engaged in holding in custody, directly or indirectly any persons taken by the rebel government as prisoners of war, or any persons imprisoned or confined by the Confederate government or the authorities of any State in rebellion, for political causes.

35. I never belonged to any company or association for imprisoning, expelling, executing or persecuting any persons on account of their loyalty to the United States Government.

36. I never was parolled.

37. I never held any office, in Army or Navy, of the U.S. I was not educated at any Military or Naval School.

38. I never had any pass, from any officer, or others, acting for the Confederate Government.

39. I was under no disabilities at all. I have held no office since the war.

40. I sympathised with the union cause. My feelings and language was always in favor of the Union and against the rebellion. I exerted my influence in favor of the Union and voted for Union Candidates to the State Convention in 1861. I did not vote on the ratification of the ordinance of Secession, after its adoption, I still adhered to the Union.

41. I do declare that from the beginning of hostilities against the United States to the end thereof, my sympathies were constantly with the cause of the United States; that I never of my own free will and accord, did anything or offered, or sought or interrupted to do anything, by word or deed to injure said cause or retard its success and that I was at all times ready and willing when called upon, or if called upon, to aid and assist the cause of the Union or its supporters, so far as my means and power and the circumstances of the case permitted.

1. I was not at my house when the property was taken, had gone to a mill 1/2 mile off, for some flour, and did not see the property taken, but saw the property in the possession of Union forces, when I met them between the Mill and my house. The property consisted of two Mares, a black and brown, the black was six years old and the brown five years, they were both in good condition. They also took two saddles and two bridles. I spoke to some of the officers about my property and wanted a receipt, but they were marching and said if I would come to their Camp that night they would do so. I did not go for the reason that the distance was too great, and I had no way to go except on foot. The property was taken in June 1864, about the 6th or 7th I think. It was by a force in charge of prisoners captured at Piedmont, detached from Genl David Hunter, and on their march to Parkersburg W.Va. I suppose there was not less than 1500 in the command.

5. Wm. J.D. Riley, was present with my family and saw them taken.

6. I did not learn of the names of the officers.

7. I was not present when taken.

8. The soldiers were riding the horses when I saw them.

9. They were marching. I did not follow.

10. I suppose for the use of the Cavalry, as they were mounted on the Mares, when I met them.

11. I did not make any complaint but merely asked for a receipt. I told them I had always been for the Union, and for that reason had left my horses in the stable. I did not know the name of any officers.

12. I asked for a receipt, but was refused for the reason that they were then marching, that was the only objection given.

13. The property was taken in the morning, about 7 Oclock. There was no secrecy in taking the property.

14. There was no encampment in that vicinity. The main Army was in and around Staunton. There had been a battle on the Sunday previous at Piedmont in Augusta Co.

15. The Mares were in good condition sound and healthy. The saddles & bridles were about half worn, but I think worth all that I have charged as also the Mares. I never received any pay.

A.J. Acord

Testimony: William J.D. Riley

Deposition of Wm. J.D. Riley

In answer to the first Interrogatory he Says My name is Wm. J.D. Riley, my age is 37 years, my residence Staunton, Va. and my occupation a Plasterer. I am not related to the claimant and have no beneficial interest in the claim.

1. I was within a very short distance, just across the street of the village.

2. I saw them take the two horses.

3. I did not hear anything said, particularly. The horses were taken out of the stable, which stood a short distance from the claimants dwelling house. I do not recollect whether there were any officers at the stable or not. There were a number of men in the alley leading to the stable. The horses were taken by men in the main force, and not by followers or stragglers.

4. They were taken at West View, a village, six miles west of Staunton on the Parkersburg Turnpike road. In June 1864, probably the 6th or 7th. They were taken by a command in charge of prisoners, en route to Parkersburg W.Va. There were a number of soldiers in the stable alley. I suppose there were 1500 or more in the command, and very nearly all present when the horses were brought from the stable. The claimants house was seperated from the street or road by a small yard. They were only a few minutes engaged in taking the horses and then marched on.

5. No one that I recollect except claimants wife and children.

6. I saw officers there, I do not know what their rank was, or their names, nor the regiment. The command was a part of Genl. Hunter's Army, detached in charge of prisoners, captured at Piedmont. I heard no orders given, or anything said at all.

7. The horses were taken from the stable, and lead out of the Alley.

8. As well as I recollect they were leading the horses the last I saw of them, as I left when they came out of the Alley.

9. The command was marching west in the direction of Parkersburg. I did not follow them. I saw the the horses in their possession, as I have before said.

10. I suppose the horses were for the use of the cavalry. Though I do not know, as I never saw them afterwards.

11. There was no complaint that I recollect of.

12. There was no receipt or voucher given that I know of. None asked that I heard.

13. The property was taken in the morning after sunrise.

14. There was no encampment nearer than Staunton, there had been a battle at Piedmont a few days previous. I knew no officer or any rank at all.

15. The horses were in good condition, both Mares, brown color one darker than the other. I am not certain about their ages, probably five and six years old. I think the darker colored one was worth one hundred and seventy five dollars, and the other, one hundred and fifty dollars. They were good horses.

I know nothing about the saddles and bridles.

I had a conversation with claimant at one time about the value of the horses, and my opinion then was as now, that they were worth $175.00 & $150.00.

Further this deponent saith not.

WJD Riley

Testimony: Andrew J. Palmer

Deposition of Andrew J. Palmer

Ans. to 1st general question-My name is A.J. Palmer, my age 43 years, residence near Staunton Va. My occupation a Miller. I was not present when the property specified in claimants account was taken.

2. I saw them a very short time after they were taken, in the possession of the soldiers.

3. I was at the valley Mill, about 1/2 mile from the claimants house, when I saw the property, the Command was marching when I saw them, in the direction of Parkersburg, and were then on the Parkersburg Turnpike road. There was a soldier riding the bay or brown Mare, and another soldier was leading the black Mare. The soldier, that was leading the black Mare, was walking. I am not mistaken about the two Mares mentioned being the property of the claimants.

4. As I did not see them taken, I do not know where they were taken from, but suppose the claimants stable or lot, as they were coming directly on the road from his house. They were taken on the _____ day of June, 1864. I should judge there were about 1400 soldiers, in charge of the prisoners captured at Piedmont.

5. I do not recollect how many were present other than officers. I do not recollect any names.

6. There were several officers along with the command. There was a Colonel who told me his name, but I have forgotten it.

7. I did not hear anything said by officers or soldiers or officers in relation to the claimants property.

8 & 9. A soldier was riding one, and another soldier was walking and leading the other Mare. The command was en route toward Parkersburg W.Va. I did not follow, nor do not know where the went to.

10. I know nothing of the use made of the horses. I only know that I saw them in the possession of the soldiers.

11. I do not recollect of hearing of any complaint being made.

12. I know of no receipt being given or asked. I heard no conversation about the taking of the property.

13. The property was taken in the morning, directly after breakfast.

14. Staunton was the nearest encampment, about 6 miles from claimant. They remained in Staunton about four days. The battle of Piedmont took place a few days before.

15. The horses were in good working order, both young. The bay was 5 years and the black 6 years, both of good size. I suppose the black worth $140.00 and the bay $120.00. I dont recollect of talking with claimant about the price. I have no interest in the claim.

A.J. Parker

Testimony: Samuel Driver


Deposition of Samuel Driver

Answer to general interrogatory

My name is Samuel Driver, my age is 38 years, my residence near Swopes Depot, Augusta Co.Va. occupation a farmer & minister in the German Baptist or Dunkard Church. I have known the claimant 14 years. We have been all that time very intimate, we lived one mile apart for 12 years, the past two years, he has resided in Staunton, Va. I saw him very often during the war. I saw him at times every day, and again not for two or more weeks. Our conversation was generally about the war, when we met. I think from all the information I could get from him that he was untiringly a union man. Our sympathies were both in favor of the Union. I think that the claimant regarded me as in favor of the Union. When the subject of the Ordinance of Secession came up we talked about it, and he told me that he would not vote for it, and after the war commenced, there was a Military board organized at Staunton to examine men for the army, he & I were exempt, and afterwards the order for our exemption was revoked.

[pages 19 and 20 are missing]

Testimony: George A. Shuey

is 57 years, I reside near Churchville Augusta Co.Va. my occupation a farmer. I have known the claimant for 30 years. I was intimate with him during the war, resided in about two miles of him. I saw him frequently during the War, and conversed with him about the war, and never heard him say a word in favor of the Southern Confederacy. He regarded me as a Union man, my sentiments were well known to all that knew me. I knew him the claimants Union sympathies by his words and acts. I do not recollect of hearing him converse in the presence of others. We were always alone, in our conversations about the War, as far as I ever heard, his reputation as a Union man, was unquestioned by his loyal neighbors. I never knew him to contribute any property or money in aid of the Union cause. There was no chance for any of us to do so. I do not know that he was ever in person or family molested or threatened by the Confederate authorities. I do not know that he ever contributed anything to aid the Confederate cause, my impression is he did not. I do not know that he ever owned any bonds, or that he done anything to sustain the credit of the Confederate States. From his language and acts, he never could have maintained loyalty to the Confederate government, if it had gained its independence.

Further than this deponent saith not.

Geo. A. Shuey

Bibliographic Information : Southern Claims Commission: Claim of Andrew J. Acord, 1876, Claim No. 11235, Source copy consulted: National Archives, College Park, RG 217, claim #11235.

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