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State Officials and Activity
Bounties
Extracts from documents Regarding the
Payment of Bounties During the War

Essex

"The amount expended by the town for bounties and attending expenses was thirty-seven thousand, five hundred and sixty-seven dollars, ($35,567.00), equivalent to nineteen dollars for each man, women and child in the town, according to the census of 1860; more than one hundred dollars to each voter, or nearly eight hundred per cent of the grand tax list of 1865."

Source: "Essex Centennial, The Hundredth Anniversary of the Settlement of Essex, Vermont, September 2, 3, and 4, 1883." Montpelier: Argus and Patriot Books. 1883


Franklin County:

"During the first year, in 1861, no special inducements were offered for enlistments, save $7.00 per month paid by the State to the soldiers and their families, and then more soldiers volunteered than were required. In the summer and autumn of 1862, some towns paid small bounties, from $25.00 to $75.00 for three year's men. In 1863, town bounties ranges from $100.00 to $350.00 for three year's men, and in 1864, the highest point was reached, from $500.00 to $1,000.00. The town of Fairfield paid as high as $1,000.00 for one year's men in the summer of 1864, while the town of Montgomery paid nothing throughout the war, except to drafted men."

(Source: Hamilton Child, in "Gazetteer and Business Directory of Franklin and Grand Isle Counties," 1882.

Jericho (regarding recruitment of Co. F, 13th Infantry)

"The town bounty paid to these men was as follows, viz:
To Lucius H. Bostwick, fifty dollars, as before stated; to Willis T. Wells and Norman J. Rice, eighty-five dollars each; to Julius H. Bliss, Caleb P. Nash and Henry W. York, one hundred and thirty-five dollars each; and to the remaining fifteen, sixty dollars each."

Source: E. H. Lane, The Soldiers' Record of Jericho, Vermont, (R. S. Styles, Book and Job Printer, Burlington, 1868

Pawlet

"Fifty men have enlisted from this town, most of them for three years, who have received no local bounty, though several of them, by enlisting for another three years, received $200 each. Many of our hired substitutes and men from abroad, who received the highest local bounties, deserted."

Source: Hiel Hollister, Pawlet for One Hundred Years." Bicentennial Edition, (Pawlet Historical Society Pawlet, Vermont, 1976).

Rutland

"... the town voting bounties and paying same with other expenses of recruiting to the amount of $217,676.64, or over one-twelfth of the appraised value of all the property in the town. Every claim for bounty made since has been promptly met, although all legal obligation had long since outlawed."

Source: J. H. Goulding, Official Military and Naval Records of Rutland, Vermont in the War Of The Rebellion, 1861-1866, (Tuttle Company, Book and Job Printers, Rutland, 1891).


State Laws Relative to Bounties

No. 6.--AN ACT RELATING TO THE BOUNTY AND PAY OF SOLDIERS AND THEIR SUPPORT OF THEIR FAMILIES.

Section.Section.
1. Bounty money not subject to trustee process. Exception.
2. Bounty may be applied to support of family of soldier, in certain cases.
3. Deserter cannot sustain action against town for bounty.
4. Act takes effect from its passage.

It is hereby enacted by the General Assembly of the State of Vermont:

Sec. 1. The bounty money or pay due from any town in this State to any volunteer or drafted soldier by reason of any vote of such town, shall not be subject to trustee process, except by action in favor of a town which has been obliged to furnish support to the family of said soldier, after he has entered the service; and such town may recover for all expense so of necessity incurred and judiciously expended, in cases where the soldier, being of sufficient ability, neglects to provide for his family.

Sec. 2. In case said bounty or pay is due directly from the town furnishing such support, so much thereof as the overseer of said town may deem necessary, may be applied to such support of the family of said soldier.

Sec. 3. No action shall be had or sustained against any town by a soldier, for such bounty or pay, when said soldier deserted the service.

Sec. 4. This act shall take effect from its passage.

Approved, November 15, 1864.


No. 7.--AN ACT IN RELATION TO THE BOUNTY AND BACK PAY OF DECEASED SOLDIERS.

It is here by enacted by the General Assembly of the State of Vermont:

Sec. 1. That any bounty money due a soldier in th eUnited States service, or any money due such soldier from the State of Vermont on account of military service or allotted pay of such soldier at the time of the decease of such soldier whilst in the service, shall not be deemed assets of such soldier for the payment of debts agains such soldier, but shall go to and be held bythe widow of such soldier, or next of kin.

Sec. 2. This act shall take effect from its passage.

Approved, November 22, 1864.


Source: Acts and Resolves passed by the General Assembly of the State of Vermont at the Annual Session, 1864. (Freeman Steam Printing Establishment, Montpelier, 1864), pp. 26-7.