James Madison Papers

To James Madison from Samuel Finch, 30 May 1814

From Samuel Finch

German, Chenango County N. York
May 30th. 1814

The inclosed is a list of property which was taken from me by the enemy in the battle at Sackets Harbor on the 29th of May 1813. I was a first Lieut. in the Albany Volunteer Regiment and was so unlucky as to loose all my Clothing except a poor every day suit which I put on to mount guard in, among the brush on horse Island. I spoke to Genl. J. Armstrong last fall at the Harbour respecting a compensation from the general Government for the loss. He told me that it was not in his power to do any thing about it but the President of the U.S. was autherised to do it: therefore I present his excelency with a list of my loss at prime cost, if there is any way for me to git pay I should be very Glad for my loss was more then I am able to bear, if his excelency sees fit to send me the money, please to direct the letter to the Post office in the Town of Cincinatus in the County of Cortland N. York and I shall soon receive it.

I should be glad if the President would write to me at all events and let me know whether it can be obtained or not, & it will much oblige yours with the greatest respect

Samuel Finch


A list of Property belonging to Lieut. Saml. Finch of the Albany Volunteer Regiment in the service of the United States for twelve months, said Property was taken by the British in the Battle at Sackets Harbour on the twenty ninth day of May 1813

Dol. Cents
One Great Coat   20 00
One uniform straight bodied Coat   38 50
One non dress Coat   25 50
Three Vests $4 each   12 00
Two silk Handkerchiefs $1.50 each    3 00
Seven shirts $3.25 each   22 75
One pair Panteloons   10 00
Two pair stockings $1.25 each    2 50
One pair of Boots   10 00
Four Blankets $5 each   20 00
One Dirk   10 00
One Cloaths Trunk   4 00
One Drum   11 00
Total Amount $189 25

I do hereby certify on honor that the above amount against the U. States is accurate and Just, and that the above mentioned Artickles was my own private property, and they were taken from me by the British, in the Battle at Sackets Harbour on the 29th. of May 1813

Samuel Finch 1st. Lieut.
Comg. Compy. U.S. Vol.

RC and enclosure (DNA: RG 107, LRRS, F-12:8). Docketed as received in the War Department in June 1814.

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