Notes from the past…


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And a Mortuary Warrant is…

Art. 6227. MORTUARY WARRANT. Whenever any pensioner who has been regularly placed upon the pension rolls under the provisions of law relating thereto shall die, and proof thereof shall be made to the Comptroller within forty (40) days from the date of such death by the affidavit of the doctor who attended the pensioner during the last illness, or the undertaker who conducted the funeral, or made arrangements therefor, the Comptroller shall issue a mortuary warrant for an amount not exceeding Two Hundred Dollars ($200), payable out of the Pension Fund, in favor of the heirs or legal representatives of the deceased pensioner, or in favor of the person or persons owning the accounts. (Proof of the existence and justice of such accounts to be made to said Comptroller under oath and in such form as he may require for the purpose of paying the funeral expenses of the deceased pensioners. In such cases where a warrant for the pension for the month during which the pensioner died has been issued, the same shall be returned to the Comptroller who shall mark the same “Cancelled” and file it; or if the warrant has been cashed, then the Confederate Pension Fund shall be reimbursed with the amount for which the warrant was drawn before the mortuary warrant herein provided for shall issue. Where such warrant for the pension has not been issued, the same shall not be issued, but the mortuary warrant herein provided for shall take place thereof.)

Texas Vernon’s Texas Civil Statutes- Article 6227. Mortuary Warrant

…Oh, ok, to pay for Sarah’s final expenses!


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A great research day!

On June 12, I sent an email to the Texas State Library and Archives Commission requesting a copy of the Confederate Pension Application File of my great-great-great grandmother Sarah Jane Carroll (John Bunyan Carroll). The process is quite simple: search the database, if you find an ancestor, just send an email to the address given and they will send copies of whatever files they have, along with an invoice.

And it was really just that simple. So when I checked my mail this evening, there was a large manilla envelope from the Texas State Library and Archives Commission! Inside where 13 pages of documents…and a bill for $2.64!

Enclosed was:

  • the application, including names, dates of birth, marriage & death, and the name of the unit that J B Carroll served in and when he served
  • witness statements attesting to the facts that Sarah Jane was his widow, that she had been a “bona fide resident citizen of Texas” since 1855, and that J B Carroll had served in Captain Riley Wood’s Command, Texas Cavalry, Confederate States Army (this group was part of what would later become our modern-day Texas Rangers!)
  • a request sent to the Adjutant General, United States War Department for the Military Record of J B Carroll
  • an invoice from W T Little & Sons, Hardware, Furniture and Undertakers- for the final expenses of Sarah Jane Carroll, who died in 1942 at the age of 99
  • an Application for Mortuary Warrant for Sarah- stating when & where she died, including a statement from the attending physician at the time of her death

The last two documents where required to close the file, I’m sure.

The good news here: Sarah was awarded the pension on July 1, 1931 and received it until her death. Unlike poor Sarah Turner, Sarah Carroll was not represented by Wills & Co of Washington, DC!

Now I just gotta figure out what a Mortuary Warrant is…


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An update on the Texas Governor's Mansion fire

From today’s Fort Worth Star-Telegram:

DPS unprepared when arsonist attacked governor’s mansion, report says

By JOHN MORITZ

AUSTIN — The night the Texas Governor’s Mansion was attacked by an arsonist, the lone state trooper guarding the 152-year-old facility was inadequately trained to be prepared for the emergency, and seven of the 20 security cameras on the grounds were not functioning, the agency that oversees the Texas Department of Public Safety was told Thursday.”This is likely not the finest hour for the department,” Department of Public Safety Commission Chairman Allan Polunsky said after hearing a blistering preliminary report on the predawn June 9 blaze.

The report delivered by DPS Sgt. Mike Escalante said that troopers assigned to guard the mansion while it was vacant and undergoing a $10 million renovation had requested additional round-the-clock staffing, but the request had not been acted upon by the time the fire inflicted heavy damage to the stately building.

In addition, key security equipment had been taken off the mansion property for repairs. The lone trooper on duty was not watching the bank of video screens when the fire broke out after someone had thrown a Molotov cocktail at the mansion’s porch, Escalante said.

The trooper was later told by an off-duty Austin police officer that a suspicious person was seen leaving the vicinity shortly after firefighters were called. The person then drove away.

Officials later discovered a cigarette lighter near where security cameras showed the arsonist to be.

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Taking things for granted, it seems…