From Paul Boughman
Wilmington Delawar December 1st 1792
Pleas to Except of one Barrel of apples1 from one of your houner’s old Soldiers who Enterd Early in the Caus of freedom, and Received Two Wounds wich now makes me labour under many Defiquelties as I haveig no Traid but am Exposed to wet and Cold.2
The Reason of my wrighting thus is to let you Know Sir that I having applied to Congress for Som Relief but Could obtain none becaus I Did not make applic[a]tion in the time limmetted by Congress as I Never knew of any limitation3 Pleas Sir to let me know weather I am Entitled to be plased on the pension list I Did not Serve to the End of the war but Served five years in the bgining Sir I gave in a petition to land memoriel to Congress but Recived not any answer4 So no more at present but I Remain your humbel Servent at Command
1. Tobias Lear docketed this letter: “From An Old Soldier with a bbl. of apples wh. however, never came to hand.”
2. Paul Boughman (Bowman; c.1757–fl.1837), who had enlisted on 14 Aug. 1776 as a private in Capt. Thomas Kean’s company of foot in the Delaware battalion of flying camp commanded by Col. Samuel Patterson, eventually attained the rank of sergeant (see Delaware Archives, description begins Delaware Archives. 5 vols. 1911–19. Reprint. New York, 1974. description ends 1:68–69, 3:1215).
3. Boughman is referring to the Continental Congress’s resolution of 11 June 1788 which restricted eligibility for invalid pensions to veterans who applied before 11 Dec. 1788 (JCC, description begins Worthington Chauncey Ford et al., eds. Journals of the Continental Congress, 1774-1789. 34 vols. Washington, D.C., 1904–37. description ends 34:210).
4. The House of Representatives on 25 Feb. 1791 referred Boughman’s petition and those of other veterans asking to be placed on the “list of pensioners, in consideration of wounds received” to Secretary of War Henry Knox for examination (Journal of the House description begins The Journal of the House of Representatives: George Washington Administration 1789–1797. Edited by Martin P. Claussen. 9 vols. Wilmington, Del., 1977. description ends , 3:82–83). Section 5 of “An Act to provide for the settlement of the Claims of Widows and Orphans barred by the limitations heretofore established, and to regulate the Claims to Invalid Pensions,” 23 Mar. 1792, specifies that “all non-commissioned officers, soldiers and seamen, disabled . . . during the late war” who had not applied to be placed on the pension list until after the deadline previously set by Congress were now to be put on the pension list (1 Stat. description begins Richard Peters, ed. The Public Statutes at Large of the United States of America, from the Organization of the Government in 1789, to March 3, 1845 . . .. 8 vols. Boston, 1845-67. description ends 243–45). Knox on 3 April, therefore, returned the petitions, including Boughman’s, to the House, where they were read and tabled (Journal of the House description begins The Journal of the House of Representatives: George Washington Administration 1789–1797. Edited by Martin P. Claussen. 9 vols. Wilmington, Del., 1977. description ends , 4:161). Boughman eventually succeeded in his efforts to be placed on the pension list (see Delaware Archives, description begins Delaware Archives. 5 vols. 1911–19. Reprint. New York, 1974. description ends 3:1215). Boughman apparently also had applied for a land grant under resolutions passed by the Continental Congress on 16 and 18 Sept. 1776, which offered land to officers and soldiers who had served in the Continental army (JCC, description begins Worthington Chauncey Ford et al., eds. Journals of the Continental Congress, 1774-1789. 34 vols. Washington, D.C., 1904–37. description ends 5:763, 781).