Fear, Force, and Leather: The Texas Prison System&rsquot;s First Hundred Years 1848-1948

Henry E. Perkins to the Texas Legislature, February 13, 1863

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Henry Perkins to the Texas Legislature, February 1863

To the Legislature of the State of Texas

Your memorialist would rep-
resent unto your Hon body that he hired for the State of Texas
as a State officer, six Negroes claiming to be free[,] which said
negroes were captured on the U.S. “Harriett [sic] Lane” in Galveston
Harbor on the 1st ult. He hired the whole number for
the term of Six Months for the sum of fifty six 25/100 doll[ar]s
the amt of costs & expenses upon them. He visited
Huntsville & arranged with Col. Carruthers [Carothers] the Supt
(with the assistance of Judge James A Baker) to receive them
into the State Penitentiary & on the 20th Jan'y] the said
Negroes were delivered to said supt & are now at work for
the state. Your memorialist's expenses in visiting Huntsville to
make the necessary arrangements were $24.00 and the amt of costs &
expenses of sending the Negroes to Huntsville etc. as per annexed
bill were $148.25[,] making the total amt $172.25 all of which he
has paid as there was no appropriation for such purposes[.] He
therefore respectfully asks that that the amount he has expended &
advanced in the ______[?] may be refunded to him.

He would further represent that since said period that
there were 29 other Negroes captured on the “Morning Light ” as
en:[?] Sabine Pass & now in possession of the sheriff of Harris County
22 of whom are slaves & claiming to be free[.] Thus no steps
have been taken in the latter case because of the anticipated
assemblage of Your Honorable body on the 2d inst & believing that our
Free Negro & Runaway Law[,] which never contemplated this state

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Henry E. Perkins to the Texas Legislature, February 13, 1863. Correspondence Concerning the Penitentiary, Records Relating to the Penitentiary, Archives and Information Services Division, Texas State Library and Archives Commission.

Page last modified: August 17, 2011