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THE NATIONAL TRIBUNE: WASHINGTON, D. C, JANUARY 21, 1882.
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The valicity of the pueuc ceet of the United States,
AUTHORIZED EY LAW, INCLUDING DEBTS INCURRED FOR PAYMENT OF
PENSIONS WD EOUNTIE6 FCR SERVICES IN SUPPRESSING INSURREC
TON OR REBELLION, SHALL NOT EE QUESTIONED." SEC. 4, ART.
XT'. CcfcTITUTiOh OF TnE UNITED STATES.
Zswrti tt tie 'TCutiBrtre City F(t-OSw u eoocd-cliM Bitter.
WASHINGTON, B. C, JANUAEY 21, 1882.
Me. Beck, in the course of his remarks upon
the tariff commission bill, went out of his way
to ay, "I would repeal the Arrears of Pension
There are, doubtless, many laws the Senator
would repeal, had he the power in fact, had he
his will, all legislation in behalf of those who
put down the rebellion would be wiped out.
Oxly the truly noble-minded are ready to
acknowledge errors of judgment as respects the
conduct or motives of others.
That withholding of justice which, in an in
dividual, is simply an exhibition of petty spite,
becomes, when practiced by a nation, a despi
Men sometimes say it is useless to contend
against fate. But how do they know fate op
poses them if they cease contending at the first
manifestation of opposition?
One kindly deed unconsciously done finds
greater weight with God than the most princely
benefaction made for the purpose of winning the
approval of others.
Statesmanship nowadays consists chiefly
in such an administration of public affairs as
will best subserve the interests of the party in
power, and on the part of their opponents of
the adoption and carrying out of that policy
which will most surely defeat the intentions of
Popular elections consist in public expres
sions of the will of the minority through the
ballots cast by the majority. The brain that
controls the votes deposited is centred in the very
few who axe known as party managers,, and who
do the thinking for all the others.
Nothing is impossible with God ; nor with
man, when acting within his proper sphere. It
is only when a mortal seeks to transcend the
objects for which he was created when he en
deavors to exercise the prerogatives of Divinity
that he fails in the accomplishment of whatever
he undertakes and persistently adheres to.
Senator Beck recently used the following
language on the floor of the Senate when
speaking of the Arrears of Pension Act: "It is
a fraud upon the American people, and a stand
ing monument to the ignorance, selfishness, and
cowardice of the American Congress."
Can it be possible that the honorable gentle
man has forgotten that he was a Senator when
the measure to which he refers was made a law,
and that by not voting against it he virtually
became a party consenting to the alleged fraud?
And will the honorable gentlemen please inform
the loyal soldiers of his own State and of the
country, and also the loyal men of his own jparty,
if he wishes to be understood as charging such
stalwart Democrats as Kernan, McPherson, Voor
hees, Thurman, McDonald, Hill, "Wallace, and
Jones of Florida, who voted for the measure, with
perpetrating a fraud upon the American people ?
Mr. Beck may himself be very brave, but his
neglect to vote agains.t the Arrears Act when he
could have done so, and kis present cowardly
attack upon those who opealy and honestly
favored it without regard to party affiliations,
are not calculated to sustain that reputation for
conscientious discharge of duty, honesty of pur
pose, brilliancy as a statesman, and moral
courage to do right which he is apparent) en
deavoring to arrogate to himself.
What It Cost the Pensioner.
Ever since the meeting of the present Con
gress certain newspapers, prominent among
which are the New York Tribune, Herald. Times,
and Post, and the Philadelphia Times and Press,
have devoted much of their space to articles
containing false, cruel, and malicious charges
against the ex-soldiers, and especially the pen
sioners of the Government. The editors of these
papers have also given much of their time to
making computations designed to show the
probable cost of the Arrears of Pension Act,
meanwhile clamoring for its repeal, not forget
ting to denounce in general terms (but nene the
less specific for that reason) the Senators and
Members of Congress who voted for the measure
on its passage. They have been careful, how
ever, to exhibit only one side of the matter to
show only what the pensioner costs the Govern
ment. "We propose to show the other side, and
in order to do so shall take a supposititious case,
but one which nevertheless has its counterpart
in every community of pensioners. For con
venience we have taken a mechanic as our sub
ject; but in order to apply our illustration to
any other class of laborers a farmer, clerk,
or the like it only becomes necessary to change,
the rate of wages to suit the particular case.
Now let us see what the Government has cost a
single pensioner since the date of his entry into
the service of the United States.
Brown has just been granted a pension under
the Arrears Act, and his first payment amounts
to $2,280. He was rated as follows: For the
first five years succeeding discharge in 1864, four
dollars per month ; for the next two years, six
dollars per month ; for the next year, eight dol
lars per month; for the five years succeeding,
twelve dollars, and the last five years eighteen
dollars per month eighteen years in all. He
enlisted in April, 1861, and was discharged in
March, 184, on account of wounds and other
disabilities incurred in service. He received
during the thirty-five months he was in the
army in pay and bounty the magnificent sum of
655. He has therefore cost the Government up
to the present time $2,935.
New, let us see what the Government has cost
him bearing in mind that the capital of a
laboring man consists chiefly in the degree of
health and strength of muscle he is able to invest
in his business. At the date of his enlistment he
was twenty-one years of age, perfectly sound, by
occupation a mechanic, and in receipt of a steady
income of $15 per week for his labor.
Had he remained -at home engaged at his
trade instead of enlisting his wages for the
thirty-five months covering the period of his
army service would have amounted to $2,280.
He, therefore, in addition to perilling his life in
defence of his country, undergoing all manner of
hardships, enduring sufferings and losing his
health, virtually donated to the Government
$1,625, or at the rate of forty-six dollars per month
for all the time he was serving it, or about two
and one-half times the amount required to pay for
another soldier for the same length of time and
upon similar terms.
But this is not all. Brown came home in
March, 1864, a mere wreck. He was badly crip
pled and his general health was very much im
paired. Being unable to live without work he
sought for employment. Wages were high dur
ing that year, and had he been an able-bodied
man he could have commanded not less than $20
per week during 1864 and 1865, and $15 per
week after the latter year. In his disabled
condition, however, he was forced to accept
"boy's wages," or about, in those days, $6 per
week. He worked for this pay five years, earn
ing, in all, $1,560 instead of the $3,900 which an
able-bodied man would have earned during the
same period, making an additional balance
against the Government for losses incurred
through his military service of $2,340.
At the end of the five years his ability to labor
had decreased to such an extent that he could no
longer obtain steady employment, and from 1869
to 1874 he worked by the day. During these
five years his average daily pay was seventy-five
cents, and his total earnings only amounted to
$926, he having lost one-third of the time on
account of sickness, resulting from his army
service. An able-bodied man, during the same
period, would have earned, at $15 per week,
$3,900. Brown, therefore, lost an additional
sum $2,974 through having assisted the Gov
ernment in putting down the rebellion.
From 1874 to 1875 he was unable to perform
any manual labor, and, therefore, earned nothing.
The labor of an able-bodied mechanic for that
year would have been worth $15 per week, or
$780. This sum must be added to Brown's losses
growing out of the war, From 1875 .to 1879 he
was compelled to lose one-half his time by reason
of disabilities incurred in service, and the wages
he received aggregated only $468, leaving an ad
ditional charge against the Government of $2,652,
being the difference between his actual receipts
and what he might have earned but for the
disabilities incurred while in the army during
From 1879 to 1882, three years, he only earned
$234 in all, which was $2,106 less than an able
bodied man would have received for the same
length of time.
Now, let us recapitulate and see how the ac
count stands between the Government and
Brown to-day, remembering that hie case is but
one of thousands that are similar,. although the
figures may vftry somewhat, according to the
occupations of the pensioners, the respective
degrees of disability, length of time served, &c.
- O o
152 weeks in army
After dischage first 260 weeks
" " second 260 weeks...
" " 52 weeks, 1S74-1875
208 weeks, 1875-3879
" " 156 weeks, 1879-2882
Deduct from loss pension rec'd.
Net loss ! I I 810,197
The war, then, has cost Brown $10,197 over and
above the amount paid him by the Government
for his services, not including medical attendance
since, which has averaged $75 per year for eigh
teen years. To-day he is, at 42 years of age, an
old, broken-down man, a burden to himself and
everybody about him. All the pleasant visions
that cheered his youth vanished in the smoke of
battle. The fountains of his love have never
been caused to send forth their sparkling waters
in response to a wife's kiss of affection or the
sound of childish voices, ever musical to a father's
ear. Without a home, without friends to care
for him, and without hope of ever bettering his
condition in this world, he lingers on, and drags
his sick and crippled form up and down earth's
great highway, a deserving object for the com
passion of Christen men and women everywhere
who love the Union and respect and admire
loyalty to the Flag. And yet, this poor, maimed,
and worn-out veteran, who should be receiving
the tenderest care a Nation's love can render, is
being charged by such vile sheets as the New
York Tribune, Herald, Post, and Times, with being
a fraud with drawing money from the United
States he has never earned. They say he was
never entitled to the arrears which, the Govern
ment gave him ; that he had already been amply
compensated for all his services all his sufferings.
What, we ask, can compensate for such suffer
ings as he has undergone ? What can balance
the account of a wrecked form and wasted life?
What can make up for the loss of all those enjoy
ments which youth, health, and manly vigor de
light in ? Can money ? No. The Nation may
pour out its wealth upon Brown in streams of
millions, and yet his stalwart youth will never
return ; gold cannot restore his strength, nor the
bright future he so willingly sacrificed ; but it
may help smooth his pathway to the grave. That
is all. But to do even this it should not be given
grudgingly. It should not be paid under pro
test. Nor should he who receives it be accused
of dishonesty for taking what he has so faithfully
and laboriously earned earned at the expense
of all that renders life pleasant.
It is high time for the Nation to learn to be
both just and generous to all the men, who, like
Brown, served so faithrally when help was sorely
needed. And we hope to hear no more bickering
over the amounts which have been or are to be
paid to them out of the National Treasury. They
have fairly and mere than earned all that has
been received by or promised to them, and no
man or set of men should be permitted to ques
tion the justice of what has been done.
Senator Beck and the Arrears Act.
Mr. Beck, in the course of his remarks, a few
days ago, on the bill to provide for the appoint
ment of a commission to investigate the question
of the tariff and the internal revenue laws, used
the following language:
" I would repeal the Arrears of Pension Act It
was conceived in sin and brought forth in
iniquity. It is a fraud upon the American
people, and a standing monument to the ignor
ance, selfishness, and cowardice of the American
By referring to the Congressional Becord, we
find that Mr. Beck did not vote on the measure
to which the above reference is made. It is
legitimate for us to suppose, therefore, until he
explains his absence, that he was consenting to
the alleged fraud but had not the requisite
manliness and courage to put himself upon record
in favor of it; or, to take the other horn of the
dilemma, that though opposed to it, he lacked
the courage to say so by his vote.
When The National Tbibuxe first under
took the defense of the Arrears of Pension Law
it was unsupported by any other prominent
journal of the country. It was opposed by the
New York Herald, Tribune, Times, Post, Mail
Express, Philadelphia Times and Press, Buffalo
Courier, Pittsburg Post, and a majority of the
leading papers of the West. To-day the editors
of the papers we have named and the rascals
who are backing them up in their vile attempts
to bring dishonor upon the soldier are on trial
before the loyal people of the Nation. We have
forced them to a point where they must either
furnish proofs of the frauds they allege exist
or else be forever debarred the right to associate
with honorable men everywhere.
It is gratifying to us to know that the coarse
of The National Tribune in relation to this
matter is approved and sustained by the unani
mous voice of those who fought for and saved the
Union, and also by our loyal Senators and Repre
sentatives in Congress. The fight is not yet
qver, but we believe we have got our enemies
"on the run," and we intend to follow them up
until they hide their vile carcasses in some out-of-the-way
place where they can no longer be
an offense to decent people or do them harm.
The National Tribune.
Send on your subscriptions.
Who is Beck ?
The appropriateness of Senator Beck's opposi
tion to the Arrears of Pension Bill will be more
apparent when it is remembered that he never
riskeeL his life in battle, but was so belligerent
with his tongue against the United States Gov
ernment as to render it necessary to run away
from Kentucky to avoid arrest by General Bur
bridge under the general order of General Sher
man to arrest all rebellious citizens who gave aid
and comfort to the enemy, and send them through
the lines to their friends in the so-called confederacy.
Recently a representative of The National
Teibune had an interview with the Peruvian
Minister, who commended General Hurlbut's
course as the representative of the United States
to his government very highly. He said that
this country had never sent a Minister to
Peru who was so highly thought of and respected
as is General Hurlbut. This will be pleasing
news to the friends of the latter, including the
many soldiers who served under him during the
Covington, Ky., Jan y 11, 1882.
My Dear Kniffin: I enclose one dollar,
which please pay to The National Tribune
and have it sent to me.
I have read your contributions, or rather the
published extracts from your forth-coming book,
" Kentucky in the War," with a world of pleasure
and satisfaction. Your book is going to be a
great success, and worthy the author and subject.
Yours truly, Jno. W. Finnell.
The above letter from General John W. Fin
nell, of Kentucky, the efficient organizer of the
adjutant-general's department of the State dur
ing that trying period when Kentucky emerged
from the cloud of doubt into the sunlight of
brave resolve to maintain her allegiance to the
National Government is a high compliment to
Col. Kniffin's clear and graphic delineation of
military movements and battle scenes.
Brave Words and True.
On Monday Senator Cameron, of Pennsylvania,
in the course of his remarks on his resolution to
abolish internal revenue taxes, said :
"I want to say a word here about the Arrears
of Pension Act This act never should be re
pealed, and in my judgment it never will or can
be. It has lately been held up to contempt by
that class of people who twenty years ago were
engaged in exhorting these same pensioners to
go to the front, and who now object to reward
ing them ; but their opinion is not shared by the
people at large; in fact, no more essentially just
law was ever placed upon the statute-book. Its
effect is simply and solely to prevent the Gov
erment from pleading the statute of limitation
against its former defenders. It did not increase
the rate of pension in any way whatever, but
merely said that a man entitled to a pension for
physical injury received in Government service
should not be debarred from receiving it because
he was late in making his application. To the
payment of these pensions every sentiment of
honesty and gratitude should hold us firmly
The foregoing shows that the Senator is apt
at "hitting the nail on the head," and leaves no
room for doubting his full sympathy with the
pensioners and loyal people generally in their
approval of the Arrears Act
The Agriculturists' Congress.
The congress of leading agriculturists of the
country, convened at the instance of the Commis
sioner of Agriculture, are yet in session. Various
matters have been under discussion, and the pro
ceedings will doubtless result in much good to
the farming interests throughout the United
When the congress adjourns we shall give our
readers a summary of the principal subjects dis
cussed, together with the conclusions arrived at.
The Last Bitch.
Send on your subscriptions to The National
Tribune promptly, and we will drive the oppo
nents of the Arrears of Pension Act into the last
ditch to keep company with Jeff Davis.
H. L. Millard, Past Post Commander of
Meade Post, No. 14, G. A. R., Sterling, Kan., re
ports the Post as in a flourishing condition, and
anticipating a rapid increase of membership
during the coming year. The National Tri
bune, he says, is highly appreciated, as we have
occasion to know from the subscriptions he sends
us, for which he has our thanks.
We desire to call attention to the advertise
ment of Dr. Foster's remedies which appears
elsewhere. We are acquainted with the doctor,
and knowing him as we do, depart from our
usual custom long enough to say that, in our
opinion, his remedies will, like himself, be found
The one great idea underlying many party
contests is that of success without sacrifice of
principle, if possible; with it, if necessary.
Of Interest to Prisoners of War.
Commissioner Dudley has prepared two new
rules governing the requirements of evidence in
pension claims in which the disability is alleged
to have been contracted or incurred in Southern
military prisons during the war which are very
commendable. Their effect will be to simplify
the business of his office greatly, besides doing
a just but at the same time most kindly and
thoughtful act in behalf of a large class of
worthy claimants. We shall publish the rules
in full next week.
At time of going to press the arguments in the
Guiteau case are unfinished.
General Hancock visited this city on Wednes
day, and called upon the President.
Senator McDill, of Iowa, has been re-elected to
the position he now occupies.
Senator Lamar, of Mississippi, has been re
elected. The senate of New Jersey concurred in the
amendment of the house to the senate Garfield
resolution, striking out that part which sajs
that the assassin was a sane man.
Senator Yorhees' patriotic remarks in favor of
the arrears of pensions act were delivered in the
"Tall Sycamore's" best style, every utterance
being a centre shot. "Daniel has come to judg
ment " finally on one of the most equitable and
just measures ever enacted by Congress.
Pennsylvanians, members of the G. A. R. .
should not forget the Annual Encampment at
Williamsport, January 25.
A dispatch from Constantinople of the 17th
says: "An officer to-day attempted to attack
Osman Pacha, Minister of War, with a sword.
The assailant, who was arrested, is believed to
A dispatch from St. Petersburg says: "A semi
official journal warns France that to allow the
Nihilists to appeal through the Paris press for
money is incompatible with the maintenance of
the good relations of the Powers, and also with
their duties toward one amother."
There is a rumor afloat about the Capitol that
when the Mormon question comes up for discus
sion in Congress, and after the gushing Platonic
members have relieved themselves of their long
pent-up virtuous indignation against the unholy
though patriarchal practices of the barbaric
polygamists of the sage-brush Territory of Utah,
that a dynamite bombshell is likely to be ex
ploded, exhibiting numerous picadillos on the
part of certain monogamtic Congressmen who
are expected to be loud in their denunciations of
that " twin relic of barbarism," polygamy, and
who hold up their hands in holy horror at the
very mention of such vile and pernicious prac
tices in the wilds of Utah. It is said that emis
saries in the interest of the "Latter Day Saints
have been industriously at work in their charac
teristic "still hunt" way to find out the indul
gences and habits of numerous Congressmen who
propose to belch forth their thunder against the
vile and sinful polygamous customs of the Mor
mons. If the rumor is founded on fact look out
for the sensation of the year.
The National Tribune is the name of a
weekly paper at Washington City; the Agri
cultural and Horticultural department of which
in in the hands of Mr. William Saunders, the
Superintendent of the Government Gardens there
It is needless for us to say that it will be ably
conducted, as no man in the country is more
competent. Germantown Telegraph.
MEXICAN WAR RECORDS.
Under the provisions of a late act of the Legis
lature of the State of Illinois, the adjutant-general
is directed to prepare and publish the records of the
services of the Illinois soldiers in the Mexican and
Black Hawk wars. To assist in preparing this rec
ord, the adjutant-general would be glad to have
sketches of the services of the several regiments
and companies from the survivors or from any one
possessing information. East St. Louis Gazette.
CHANGE OF PENSION AGENCY.
The President has issued the following executive
Ordered, That on and after February 1, 1882, an
agency for the payment of pensions shall be estab
lished at Augusta, in the State of Maine, and that
all pensioners residing in the State of Maine, and
now paid at Concord, N. H., win thereafter be paid
at Augusta, in the State of Maine.
The agency district of Concord, N.. H., will there
after embraee all pensioners residing in the States
of New Hampshire and Yermont.
The executive order dated May 7, 1877, creating
the Concord, N. H., agency district is hereby re
voked, said revocation to take effect February 1,
A PERTINENT QUERY.
Yesterday, when Senator Ingalls accepted the
responsibility for the Pension Arrears Bill, Mr.
Beck, who had made a speech the day before,
declaring it was an infamous measure! as could be
easily proved, had to cry for mercy and time to
"get his proof." If the bill was as bad as these
Democrats who, of course, have no especial love
for the soldiers have been declaring, how is it that
the proof was not at hand ? New York Commercial
WE SHOULD THINK SO.
A subscriber, in forwarding his subscription for
The National Tribune, says: "I was badly
wounded and draw a pension. I had my under jaw
broke off at both sides, my tongue cut half off; also
shot in the hip and through my left leg, and all of
said wounds disable me."
IraB. Hagan, Company D, Eleventh Maine, of Ells
worth, Me., sends us the following letter, which is
too good to be lost. It has the right ring. If all
the soldiers would follow suit there would be a
speedy change for the better :
National Tribune, Washington, D. C. :
Inclosed find one dollar for subscription to the
Tribune one year. .
Eespectfully, Ira B. Hagan.
N. B. For two or three years past I have been a
constant reader of the New York Tribune. My sub
scription terminates to-morrow, the 11th instant.
I subscribed for the paper on account of its noble
work in the cipher business, and I drep it for what
T nail ifsflirfvirnrTr in th Tension business. I.B.J1.
THE TREASURY CONTINGENT FUND.
The report of the Secretary of the Treasury show
ing the disbursements made from the contingent
fund of that Department during the last fiscal year
was laid before the House of Bepresentatives on
Wednesdav. The expenditures made on account ; of
binding, for newspapers, &c, aggregated m,oZ7
(included in which were seven hundred binders
purchased from J. Badley Adams for S,o and one
hundred copies of Lamphere f book on The Gov
ernment of the United States " for $300) ; on account
of traveling expenses, $2,006 ; on account of freight,
telegrams, &c, $4,207; on account of rent, $7,800 ;
on account of horses, wagons, &c, .o,98S (including
one office carriage, $G00, and another at $400; also,
rubber coats, $2,200 ; robes and repairs, $108 ; sleigh,
bells, and repairs, $141 ; and general Tepairs, $1,045) ;
on account of ice, coolers, &c, $7,179 ; on account of
fuel and labor, $9,875 ; on account of gas, gas-fixtures,
&c, $15,878 ; on account of carpets and re
pairs, $7,999 ; on account of furniture, $29,109 ; on
account of miscellaneous disbursements, $17,032.
The total amount appropriated for the fund was
$124,050, and the total amount expended $119,230,
leaving a surplus of $4,820.