Leutitia May/Mays- Written by Steven Mays-Deceased.
In 1851, a Leutitia May of Davidson Co, NC appointed an attorney to pursue her a pension due her for her deceased husband. His name was Benjamin May. Unfortunately her inquiries were placed in Benjamin Mays' file. It was for this reason that many were misled into believing that Leutitia was Benjamin's widow. Poor Leutitia had been trying for seven years before hiring Elisha Smith to become certified, based on the act of 1838 that allowed widows to receieve pensions. A letter from Smith, dated Dec 22 1851, was written to the Pension Office, asking for help on the matter. The Pension Office replied in April, 1852 that they had no record file in Mrs. May's behalf. They advised that more documentation was necessary. Leutitia evidently had given all the documentation to Thomas Judkins in 1844. She had moved about 140 miles away, but Judkins had not responded to her letters. She feared that Judkins drew her pension money without her knowledge. The Pensions department denied that they had ever received any application from Judkins. Then Leutitia's Congressman, J.F. Dowdell, was brought into the matter. He sent a note to the Commissioner of Pensions (bureaucracy existed even in those days)on Dec 12, 1853. After Christmas he was notified that the office had granted pensions to Benjamin May. Finally, on Jan 2 1855, Rep. Dowdell wrote a letter to the pension department, clearing up the matter: Hon Wm Minot
Your favor of the 28th in answer to my letter in answer to m letter of the 12th, informing me that Lucretia(should be Leutitia), a widow of Benjamin May of NC had applied for pension in 1838 and the fact had been heretofore communicated... I am satisfied that the department is under mistake in reference to the name. It is Benjamin Mays (not May) who left no widow by the name of Lecretia. If on examination, the name of Benjamin Mays of NC appears as a pensioner, you will please inform me of the fact, and how much is still due him or his heirs--have any papers in this case been filed? Your obt. servant,
Letter from National Society Daughers of the Amercian Revolution
September 10, 1998
Dear Ms. Gosnell:
Thank you for your recent letter concerning a correction to be made on a previously verified NSDAR application. We appreciate your interest in the accuracy and completeness of records for this Society. It is not possible to change information given on verified applications. Once the National Board accepts an application, it is transferred to microfiche. The original is placed in an acid free box for preservation. We have reviewed the documentation that you submitted, and we agree that Leutitia was not the wife of the pensioner who was born in 1757 in Virginia. We have corrected our records accordingly. All future applications in this line will be reviewed to make certain that Leutitia is not named as the wife of Benjamin. Thank you again for your interest and assistance.
Barbara Tucker Harrell
Mrs. John Kenneth Harrell