Thomas Jefferson Papers

To Thomas Jefferson from John Paulson, 1 September 1806

ca. 1 Sep 1806

To Thomas Jefferson President of the United States.

The Petition of John Paulson, Perry Paulson, & Gabriel Shad,

Respectfully sheweth,

That your Petitioners, are free people of colour, & inhabitants of the Borough of Wilmington in the state of Delaware. That John Paulson & Perry Paulson, were lately employed, as common sailors; on board the Schooner Sea-Flower of the Port of Wilmington, Thomas Baker Captain, on a voyarge from the said Port of Wilmington, to the islands of St. Thomas & Porto Rico & back again to Wilmington aforesaid. That whilst at Porto Rico they bought a bag of coffee for the sum of twenty dollars, which on their return to the Port of Wilmington they, in conjunction with the said Gabriel Shad, unladed from on board the said Schooner Sea-Flower, without permit, & without having first secured the duties payable thereon by law. By reason whereof, the said bag of coffee became forfeited to the United States, & your Petitioners became subject, to the penalties imposed by the revenue laws of the United States, for which they have, respectively, been prosecuted, as will appear by an authentick copy of the records of the District Court for the Delaware District, annexed to this Petition.

Your Petitioners represent that they are poor seamen belonging to the Port of Wilmington, that they have uniformly supported fair characters (except in this unfortunate instance) for honesty sobriety & industry. That your Petitioner John Paulson has a wife & child to maintain. They therefore pray of the President to pardon this their first transgression & to remit all the fines forfeitures & penalties, for the recovery of which the aforesaid suits have been commenced & instituted. And as in duty bound &c.

John Paulson

Pary Paulson

Gabriel Shad

We the subscribers recommend the Petitioners to the clemency of the President of the United States, as persons who from their general character & conduct are deserving of a pardon.

Thos Baker Master of the

Schooner Sea Flowr—

Jas. Brobson Chief Burgess

of the B. Wilmingt

John Warner

and 19 other signatures

Let a pardon issue

Th: Jefferson

Sep. 8. 1806.

DNA: RG 59—GPR—General Pardon Records.

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