Thursday, May 14, 2009

The Examiner's View of the Whelan Pension Claim

Room 549, Rand-McNally Building
No. 160 Adams Street, Chicago, Ill.
May 20, 1903
The [?] of Pensions,
Washington D.C.


I have the honor to return with my report the claim #773265 of Mary J. Whalin, which was referred to me for special examination to determine widowhood, dependence, proper name of minor, and non prior marriage of soldier.

Claimant was duly notified of the examination to be made, and of her rights and priveleges, but she did not wish to be represented by an atty, and has waived notice of any further examination deemed necessary.

This claimant is a worthy good woman of unquestioned good repute, and she is disgracefully poor, dependent beyond question. Her statement as to minors and name of her son Bertrand will, I think, satisfactorily settle that part[?].

From the witnesses whom I have seen, I have learned that soldier
became quite “cranky” during the later years of his life, and seemed to take pleasure in exaggerating his age. His hair became entirely white, and he had the appearance of being older than he really was. Peter Lynch, who is entirely reliable, an Old Lake Captain, told me after signing his deposition, of soldier’s extravagant stories about his age and said that he was younger than his sister-Mrs. Lynch, and that she & Lynch were about the same age. This would have made him about 76 or 77 if he were still living, and this corresponds with [?] estimate; She says he had the appearance of being about 40 at date of marriage.

The death cft, showing that soldier was “widowed” at date of death was unquestionably an error, as the evidence shows conclusively that the parties were living together at date of death.

Claimant was entirely correct in her statement as to the burning of the Church of Immaculate Conception in the great fire of 1871. I have had occasion to verify this repeatedly heretofore. The church records were all destroyed at that time.

I have secured the best evidence attainable, & believing it will meet the requirements of [?] of reference. I submit papers for consideration of Chief of Bd of Review.
I am very respectfully