Claim of Harriet Tubman
During the U.S. Civil War Abolitionist Harriet Tubman Davis served the Union side as a scout, nurse, cook and spy. After the war she received a pension as the widow of Union veteran Nelson Davis who had served as a private in the Eight United States Colored Infantry. Tubman later petitioned Congress for additional benefits for her own service—she submitted this affidavit which outlines her responsibilities during the war.
Congress received numerous documents and letters supporting Tubman's claim. In 1899 Congress passed, and the President signed, H.R. 4982, which authorized an increase of Tubman's pension to twenty dollars per month for her service as a nurse.
Use this document in your classroom with our lesson plan Congress and Harriet Tubman's Claim for a Pension.
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