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[From tlic Daily Moiniiic Clironirlr, Wasliincton City, D. C, Drrcmli'T 27i li ]



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A BASE SLANDER REFUTED.



, We print tn-day ii louj^ cnninnuiicilion
from \V. IVun. Clarki-, Esq , I'urmorly
chief clerli of tlie Interior Dep-iriuient,
nndt.T Secretary H-irlan, defendiDg the
luttur from aa attack on his character as a
public officer and a good citizen hy a cor I
respondent of the Cincinnati Gazette. No
ouo who reads Mr. Clarke's communication
can for a moment doubt that Mr. Harlan
has been wantonly and wickedly assailed,
and that the charges brought against him
are utterly baseless.

To the Edilor of the Chronicle:

'I be WasblDKton correspondent of the ('looio-
natl DaUi/ Gazette, of the I'tli Inst , refarrlnif to
the peoOloK ^enafrUl contest In lona, and appa-
rently for the purpose of (lama^lDK the prospects
of some of the Kentlemen wh' !;e nauies are bolo^^
need In thit connection, travels out of his way to
a<:b'all the character of ex-*eoreiary Harlan, now
one cf the oMc^t and most (llstlo^ul.ihed meubors
of the United States .Senate. In relation to the
animin of the writer. It may be observed that It l?
nusceptlble of proof that he has adml'ted that hia
oblel ;;rlevaDce was a supposed sympiatby of the
ex-Secretary with Qenenil (J. O Howard In &
church controversy between that one armed vete-
ran of the recent war and the correspondent's
faih.er, an ex chiplain of the Unueot KeprcBen-
tatlves, and whioh resulted In dividing the Con-
gregational Church of this cUy. It has also non
iiecoaie vnbllc, as a pteoe of city gossip, that this
correspondent (and perbiips some otner corres-
pondents of the public press) has taken offense at
semtor Harlan and hH family, on account ol
fome supposed Indignity whl<?h he Imagines he
bad sultered, or some dljcrlmlnatlon In lavor of
one of the reporters for the Chronulk, at the
time of the marriage of the Secretary's daughter
to Robert T. Lincoln, son of the late President-
he and they not being Informed of the fact that
Mr. LlQOuln had requested that the wedding
shoul-l be as private as praotloable, on acorUBt of
his mother, who very naturally wished to be pree-
I nt, and who was still In mournlntr over the terrl-
Ible death of her Illustrious husband. Your re-
porter was at the time temporarily connected



I with one of Mr. Harlan's Senate oommlttees. anil
concequenily regarded as a member of bis otUclal
Ibousehold— a fact that w«8 probably overlooked
|by the O'dtf^c correspondent and others to whom
we have alluded, rheue seem to be, and so far a.s
' Is known, are, the motives which have led to thlii
I malevolent a<8ault upon the character of one of
the moot distinguished of our Kepubllcan Sena-
tors, which Is more dl.'tiraceful to the author than
the gentleman whom he has assatlod, and which
cannot butesclte the condemnation of all right-
thinking men.

Une other motive may have contributed to this
attack. The tone ard temper of this Ga^f/Zc letter
would seem to justify the conviction that It may
have oeen Inspired, to some extent, by the over-
anxious Irlends of some aspirant tor senatorial
honors In Iowa, whose Interests It was Imagloed
might be advanced by blighting the 'air fiime o
those who wtre confldered obstacles In the way of
success, but this of Itself would hardly )>e a suf-
ficient motive, for we have reason to believe that
>enator Harlan has taken no part In the contest,
nor even expressed a preference In favor of any
one of the various aspirants.

The charges aaralnst the e.\-Secretary are not
only malevtlect, but contemptible in their oharao-
ler Nearly all of the allegations of misconduct
relate to trivial mitters, oot of whlon, according
to the writer's own ahowing, It would have
been Impusrlble to realize rutllclent pecuniary
proflt to amount to a temptation to do wrong
on the part of a high otflolal of the (l-ov-
crnment. If the head of a Department, who
controls the disbursement of multiplied mil.
lions of the public treasure were disposed to de-
fraud the (Jovernment. he would hardly waste his
time In an attempt to misapply a lew quires of
paper, or a few tons of coal. The charjjes, there-
fore, are not only Improbable In theaselves, but
are contradicted by the whole tenor rf .Senator
HarUn's public and ]irlvate life and character.
Upon these he might salely rely as a complete de-
fense against the envenomed attacks of anony-
mous sensational writers, and not fear the result.
But lu justice to Senator Harlan, and as a duty
we owe to the party organization of which he Is
one of the oldest and most useful members, we
ihad TTcoef d to rifvit the charges of the (•nmtt



H-x-i C^



orrespondent, and demonstrate that they are des-
titute of any foundation In fact or truth.

Dr. John R. Goodwin is our first witness — the
very man whom the Gazelle correspondent infinu-
ates knows all the facts. While Mr. Harlan was
Secretary of the Interior, Goodwin was the dis-
bursing officer of the Department, as he Is at the
present time; and In the following afiadavit he
thus sums up and comradlcts many of the charges
of the Gazette:

Washington, D. C , Deo 23, 1869.

In a communication published iu ihe Cincinnati
Daily Gazette ot the 17th inst., the writer assails
the character of the Hon. James Harlan, by char;^-
Iflji : that while Secretary of the Interior, he
appointed his son to the office of loessenger; that
he used Government horses, and paid .^eo per
month for keepintr the pair; that he paid the
driver of the team from the public lunds; that he
discharged the driver because he reluf ed to dress
in livery, at his own expenfe; that he caused a bill
of $650 lor fancy paper, cards, knives, scissors, <fco ,
for the use of hia household, to be paid for from
the comingent fund of the Department; that he
caused coal to be sant from theceilarsof iheDeptrt-
ment to his own house, for his private use ; that
he rented, and caused robe fitted up, rooms for
my private use, with puhllc lunds ; and that he
took carpets and other articles from the Depart-
ment, and converted ihem to prlvate|use

I. on oath, say that during the greater part of
the time that i>ir. Harlan was Secretary of the
Interior I was disbursing clerk and superintend-
ent of the buildinx. Durlne that time, 1 p*id all
bills that were paid lor salsries and for contin-
gencies, and al-o, as superlatendect. had charge of
the purchase of stationery, and turniture, and fuel
for the DepartmeDt ; and the cnntracts and blil-i
connected with such purchases are now In tbe
office of the disbursing clerk. These show that
the Secretary's sun was paid as a mes-^enger for
the period of seven tj -three (73)d'iy 8, and no more;
during that time he pcrlormed duty as messenger,
often during the day. and often at night f'he
rate of pay was that usually paid to messengers,
and allowed by law.

Every member of the Cabinet has a span of
horses lurnlshed and boarded for ofaoial use, and
also a driver. Mr. Harlan paid •'i>50 per month 'or
the board, and not ^GO, as alleged. This Is the
record, and It Is the customary price.

IVIr Harlan's driver never dressed in livery I
am of opinion that he never discharged a driver
because he would not dress in livery, e'se the suc-
cessor would have so dresped.

He never caused to be paid $720 eich. on the
rolls of the Department, to two men— one for a
footman, and one for a dinlDe-room servant. I
am intimately acqualnten with Mr. HarUn and
his family, and was frequen'ly at bis nouse as a
personal friend while he was Se<ir«taTy, and per-
sonally know that he had a sufficient number of
private servants to perform all the ordinary duties
connected with his household.

I have carefully examined the records of the
office, and find no bill of 4ifi50 as having been pall
for fincy stationery, &o , for the use of his house-
hold nor any other that can justify the charge.
There was no such bill paid.

He never rented any room for my private use
During his term of service I occupied rooms
rented by myself from Mr. Samuel Maa-ee, an old
citizen, and the Government never paid for any
rooms occupied by myself for private use.

Me never received from the cellars of the De-
partment any coal for his private use. If such
had been the case, I, as superintendent, would
have known it

He never received from the Department carpets
or other furniture which he did not pay for at a
full value, appraised by Impartial and competent
appraisers. .John K. Goodwin.

District of Columbia, Washington County to wit:

On this 24ch day of December, I8fc9, before me,
one of the justices of the peace in and for said
county, personally ai>peared John R. Goodwin,'
who, upon being aworn according to law, did de-



pose and sav that the foregoing statement Is true
and correct in every particular.

Su'"isoriijed and sworn to before me on this day.

[seal.] K. B. Nixon, J. P.

Thomas D. Bond, then as now, Ghief Engineer
of the Interior Department, and the cu3todian ot
the fuel of the Department, makes the following
statement under oath, wh'ch, in connection with
the affidavit of Dr. Goodwin, completely disposes
of the dastardly slander about the misuse of gov-
ernment coal :

I, Thomas D. Bond, on oath, depose and say,
that I am now, and was during the whole period
of Hon. .Tames Harlan's service as .-secretary ot'
the Interior, Ohlef Engineer of said Department,
and was then, and am now, custocian of all theluel
received for its use; and 1 further depose and say,
that i know Spersonally that no coal or other fuel
was ever taken from the Department to the res-
idence of the said Secretary. I also depose and
say, mat I acted as the said Secretary's ai;ent in
purchasing fuel for his residence and office afc
his house; that several times I procured it of the
government contractor, but tuat in every case, a.
separate bill was made out against the Secretary
lor the whole amouot, and paid for by me as his
agent, he handing me the money to pay for tho
same; and that no part of said oal or other luel
was ever paid fir by the Department. I also ae-
pose and say, that I was Intimately acquainted'
with said Secretary and his family, was often in
and through his house, and do not believe It pos-
sible that property of any Kind could have been,
taken from the Department to, and used at, his
residence, without my knowledge; and that he
was always scrupulously exact in paying for every
thing, even of the most trivial character, turned
over to his privato use or that of his family.

Thomas D. Bond.
District of Columbia, Washington County, to wit:

Oa this 2l8t day of Decemoer, 18C9. before me,
the subscriber, one of tne justices of the peace In
and for said county, personally appeared Ttjoma-*
D. Bond, and bein^j sworn according to law, did
depose and sav that the within statement is true
and correct.

Subscribed and sworn to before me this 21st day
of December, lh69.

[SE^L.] R. B. NlSON, J. P.

The next charge against the ex-Seorotary is,
that he became the purchaser of a pair of horses
telonglng to the Department at a nominal value.
This falsehood Is completely refuted by the lot.
lowing affidavit of 'iharles H. Sherrlil, John T.
Price, and Oolonel Theodore B. Samo, all three
well known gentlemen of this city, of unim-
peachable cbs-racter, and known to be excellent
judges of this kind of property. Oolonel Same
was then, and Is now. In the service of the Inte-
rior Department as the engineer of the aqueduct,
and Mr. Price is an old and large dealer In
horses, and well known to all dealers in stock.
But to the afUdavit :

Washington Oity, D O. , Dec. 24. 1869,

The underdgned, Oharlos H. SherriU, John T.
Price, and Theodore B. Samo, having seen an ar-
ticle published In tbe Olncinuatl (gazette of the
17ih instant, charging Hon. James iiarlan with
having procured a couple of horses of the Interior
Department at a nominal price, state on oath,
that on the request of the Secretary, we examined
and appraised said horses before their purchase,
and valued one of them at one hundred oollars,
and the other one at two hundred dollars. The
first one was old, and was afilicted with the dis-
ease known as heaves; tho other was defective,
being knee-sprung and afliioted with corns and
other defects No one of us thought the hori*e8
worth more thin the price named, and some
thought them worth loss than the amount named;
and no one of us then thought that they would
have commanded thit prise in open market. We
were each well acquainted with eald horses. Two



of 118 bad often driven them, Rnd the other ooe of
us. Joh^ T Price, Is, an 1 has been for a lonn pe
rlod. a deiiler in hoiges; anil we CDnclt'er our-
eelves goud judKCsol the VHlue «r ttiai kind uf

Block. i^HA.S H. MIKaUILL.

.John T Pkici;.
IiikokoukB. Samo.

DislricI of Columbia, Wanhington County, to icU:

«m ilil.-i 24iL day lit Ijeceiuber. 18uli, l<eiore ma,
one 01 the justlccM of the i.eace In and for the 8aI<1
oi>unty, )>or8i)Dullv ai'i""ur«d Oharles H. Slierrlll,
John r. Price, and Theodore K Shido, who belnir
eaoh and severally sworn accordlUK to law, did
depot^e and B^y tiiaC the within aiatement wau
true and correct
Subscribed and sworn to be'oro me vhls dav.
[SJtAt, ] K B Nixon, J. P.

The truth about this whole horse matter is that
Senator Harlan'8 family, havlnit occasionally used
the horces, and bee ime attached to theuj, desired
to retain them, and be, to gratify the family, pur-
chased the hordes at irore than tbelr real cash
valoe. No one can doubt this afte' readlni; the
foretcolnK atfidavlt. Wo uilxht rc!>t the relutatlon
of these charKBd In relation to tbe coul and hiirses
bpon ttte sworn stateinenis of the (centlemen above
named, but to leave no room for doubt, that all these
things Here honestly pil 1 for, we annex the fol
loHln^ receipts :

Received, Washlnnion. D. C , Augnft 31. 186G. o(
Hun .lames Hxrlin, 1^320. for one pair of horses
and hurneas, as per apprai.-ement..

William .>^. Marsh,
L)l«)>urslL.K rk^ent, (Aiiuoouot. )

Washinoton, 1) O., August 9. IS^d.
Hon Javeb H .ULAN BnUKUt ot .s. f. hkown i

>i>N, tiirtvHruli'K aijil u l[lJmi<^lon merctiaulsi, No.

4(16 Mnth street i)ntweon t and h'sireois:
ISoti— AuuiiBi 9 10 loijs L.. i\l. white ash tyiif

co*l at 'JiT WO $7!) OO

18Ca— August 9. 11 tons red asu fctove at ijiS 10 b9 lu

108 10
Received payment,
[Stamp ] ft. tr. Brown & Son.

Wasuikoton, January 18, 1886.
Hon. Jamus Uaulan

To H. Clay .Stkwaut. Hr
18e6— Dec. 14. To 6 toQ' gratecoalai^9 4u.. <(47 (0
6 tons lurnaoed )., -it 4^9 9J. 4'.i 5U
PuttlUki Indo , 10 tons, at

75oBnis 7 .'0

1S66— Jan. 18. TolO tons coal alijln 160 CO

Pulling In 10 tuns at 7.>c. . 7 6o



201 60
Received payment,

[Stamp] H « LAV STKWAUT.

Now. In relation to the cbar^e aimui lue larol-
tare. I( has been the cu.sio:u from ibe I irinatlon
ol the Leparimeut for the Oovernuioat lo furoi-h
a room at the Secretary's re'ldenco lir an office,
where bo receives vls(t..>rs, and ol'en transude
public business after otn^se hours. Ihli was done
in Secretary Harlan's o^te as >i matter of course,
iucludlng desk, carpel, uttli-e chairs, &o. a hlle
this wai belUK done, poine pU cee of AiS ciist-jfTcar-
peilnx, c,in."Kl«ire.i w<Tthle.«;', were procured by I
hU faulty <or the nee of tho doiue.^tlt's ia the
kitchen and basement; and. ut or abjut the time
of Secretary Harlan'.- retirement from the Depart-
ment, all of the56 articles at his request, were
appraised, and subseiiuently paH tor by him, as Is
Shown hy the followloi^ receipt:

DKPAItr.VIMNT Of THK InTKRIOE,

W.\phin<'to <, I'ccemi.er 1. 180G.
Hecelved of Hon. .laui^s Harlan, two hundred
*nd nUety Uvo djUars, (1(293) ia pay for furnliure,



I Ao , a8 per appraliement of Mr. E H Kins;, mads
Liecembrr 1, iMcO, and on file In the Department of
the luterior. .1 , K. <ti>oi>\viN,

Superinteudent.
We come no.\t to the rldlcalous Maiemont In

' relation to services of Department eniployes at
Mr. Hirlao's residence Mr. William Syphax

! has been, almost since the orKanlcitluii of the
Interior Department, the mesfen>ier of the Secre-
tary, and still holds that poiilitjn. It Is his <>aty
to take in to the Secretary tho cards of vl Itors,
and usher tbem into his presence. By reason of
this lon»; service, Le has bocome personally
acquainted with all the Senators and members of
UunKrcss, as well as other officials; and on pu'>llo

^oooaslons, as he states In the lollowluif affidavit,
he frequently attended at INIr. Harlan's to attend
tho door anil receive tte visit irs, for which service
he was :il*i«ys Kenerously paid by the .Senator's
lady. If any of the other employe.^ rendered any
services at the residence of the senator. It was
usually on slmliar occislons, when they were not

I required to be at the Department, and for which

I they were amply compensated. The chari<e that

jtho Secretary's servants wore llvorr, and that

I the coachman was discharged for the reason that
he refused to purcha.'<o a cult ut llvory at his own
expense, is refuted by the statements of Dr. Good-
win given above. The affidavit ol J\Ir. Syphax

'reads as follows:

Wa.«iiixotok, D. O , neoember 14,1 8C9.

I I. WllHiiui .■^i pba.x, on oa'h, state tbai I am
now, atid WHS durltJ^' the whole period of Hon.
.lames HarUn a ^ervlco as Secretary of the In-
terior, and lor a long I'eriod belore, tuesFenxer to
t lie .Secretary ; ibatlwas familiarly acquainted
wlih .-ecretary Harlan's houseii'jid, and that, on
extra- nilnary Ol■;ca^lon8 such as (ir.blij rec»p-
tlone, durioif what is cilleil Hit tastilmabla sna-
.<0(i, wLen there were u>ul(itudes of official (.alters
and vibilors, I was frequently at his house (as I
know personally nearlv all the Senators and mem-
bers and other I'lith officials.) to atteml the door
anil re ieive tbe guests, as was tho cu?tom before
he bacarae .secrnary . and itiat I rendered such
•ervice voluntarily, af er office nours, and was al-

, ways well paid thereior by Mrs. Harlan.

W. SrPHAX.

District of Columbia. Wa/ihinr]ton County, to wit:

On Ibis a4th day of iieoeu'ber, lt*69, belore me,
one of ttie justliits ol the peace In and for the said
county, peisiiually appeared Willi im sypUax,
who nelng sworn according to l-tw, did depose
ano siy tuai, the foregoing 8. aiement Is true and

! correct.

; subicrloed and sworn to be'ore me this day.

[>*ltAL ] K B. NiVON, .1. P.

The lollowing affidavit of Judgo KlUpatrlck ia
also to the Same put port :

Wa.-;hinotox, Docember 26, 18f9.
T, Ephraliii Kilipainck, slate on oath that
during itiBMhole iinie that Hon. James Harlan
was .-^ecrmar) of the In'eri r I was a clerk in the
Departinenl; p<rt of the lluie ajting as chief
clerk, an. the n luaindor of tho time as a clerk In
In « ne <•' the iilvbl .ns ot the office, the most of the
lime ttt a I'esU lu ibe n.oiu oorui'led by ttie ."^ecro
tar\; thatlwa* liiiiuiatelj acquainted with the
Socreta'y and hlfi lamily, and was often at his
house; his family consl^led ol himself, hU wire,
ar)d two cblldien; that he b'd at hi< hon^e con-
tinuously sever.il servant.!: — euouKb In my judu-
meut, to perr>rmall the orilln*ry duties connected
with bU bouseholii— In no way connn'^tad with the
Depar< ment, or borne on its rolls. He had a room
tilted up as an othce at his residence, as I uniier-
ftand has always been the custom "f the head of
tho Drparimetir , where he trangaoted a larite
amoani of ochclal busltiess, and I have observed
an employe — someilmes one and trmoilmes an-
other—at this office rcom, to atlanil at tue door



and to (io messenger duty, and I haye been told
tDat said employe fomalimes exchaotred worK
wUh one of the prlv'ace servaots- un public occa-
sions, suoh as recepiloas. dinners, aad during
wbat is called the fasutonible seisou, and periods
of extraordinary pressure, when there vpas a mul
titude of otS^ial callers, messengers anit other
employes of the Departtuent were frequently
present, rendering the necesaary asslst-tncs; but,
as tar as I ever noticed, none ot the Department
messengpis or employes were ever so employer: a?
to laterfere with their offlolii.l duties. 1 further
Slate that Air. H:irlan,8o tar as I linow and be-
lieve, has never, either while he was Secretary, or
before or sltice, hafl a servant in li"ery la his em-
ploy, either as coachman or In any other capacity ]

i^. KlLLPATRICK. !

District of Columbia, Washington County, to wit: 1

Uu this 26th day of UeceuQoer, li^tQ, before thej

snbscritver, one of tna i»siioe< of the peace in and

fcr I be said county, per.-'onHlly appeared V,. Klil-

pitriclc, who, betnir sworn according to law, did

depose aiifl say that the foreaoinjj statement is

true and co- re'it In every partioal«r.

Subscribed and 8 worn to before ma

[8KA.L.] K. B. Nixon, J. P. j

HavioK disposed of these trivial charges against I
the ex "Secretary — and which we have shown to
be the mere inventions of a malicious heart — we
proceed to notice ottiera more particularly afTect-
lug bis official conduct, and xvhich will be founti
equally unsupporteii by truth. The unblu.^hlog
dedarati' n that Secretary Harlan Tjuiited the
1 «.«? lu acoepiiog the first section of f >rty miles of
the Kansas branch of the Unlea Pactflo Railroad,
«nd the cowardly Insinuation that he did so from
Improper confiderai ions received from the com-
pany, through its President, John D Perry, is
driven to the wall by the voluntary staietaent ol
General William J Palmer, the Treasurer of the
coinpanj , sent to Mr. Harlan Itst winter, after
that Ktntleman ha'l rend a similar attack In the
GuscZ/f, m ide by I hts naoje corresp indent, about
a year since. From this statement It appears that
secretary Harlan was overruled by the then
President, Andrew JoiinsoQ, and afterwards acted
In this matter under the i'tesldenl's orders :

Un[<jn Pacific Railway, E. D ,
Washington, D. C, February 28, 1869
lion James Harlan, U S. Senator:

^iR : iUy attention havlog been called to a pub-
lication In the (Jinclnnati Gazette of the 23d ult. ,
charging you with dereliction of duty as Secre-
tary, lu connection with the acceptance of the
first section of forty miles of the Union Pacific
railway, eastern division, and partlcalariy
noting an appa'ent conflict between your recom-
mendation ol IVlay 29. 1»65, advising the President
ihBt said section should not be accepted, and your
.letter of i otober 28, 1895, loUowing, in which,
after reel Ing that the company had entered Into
an agreement to malie certain required Improve-
roen's, you advised that the hteretary of tLe
Treasury and the Secrptary of tue Interior be
directed to carry into effect the provisions of law
In regard to said completed spctioti, 1 deem it due
to you, ai d to trutb, to say that I was at the time
personally present at lutervlews between your,
self and officers oi said corapmy, and bet^veen
said ilflctrs and the Preslder t o' tho United
St.'ites; tbat a difference of opinion arose betwee"
you and tbe company in regard to the degree of
perfect inn required by the law under the phrase,
•■first-class railroad;" that yon uniformly and
persistently Insisted on a higher standard being
adopted than that set up by the company ano the
commissioners first appointed to examine said
oad; that you ftaniily tolo the officers of the co«-
pany tUtt. so lar as it depended on your cfifiuiai
action neither the bom's nor the Ihhos pertaining
to said section would be issued and patented
nnttl Raid section was made to conform to a stand
ard higher than that Mhloh ihe company thought



the law required, or that was practicable under
the llmiteri aid granted by tho Government in
that new country.

L>eetning it to be the province of the Presidsnt
of the United states, and no that of the >eiretary
of the Interior, to decide whether tbo si'.d sejtiou
had or had not been const: ucted according to law,
the officers of the company rtqu6i?ted him to
examine the subject ptrsontlly, wiioti be pro.
''eeded to do ; whereupon a full and free confer-
ence was had at the Kxecutlve iManslon, netween
the Presidert, the Secretary of the Interior, tho
secretary ot the Treasury, the officers of the <^im-


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Online LibraryWilliam Penniman] [ClarkeA base slander refuted (Volume 1) → online text (page 1 of 2)