Petition #11086401


James A. Mayfield, sheriff and tax collector of Issaquena County, asserts that he has been unable to collect taxes since the year 1861. He prays to be "released from his bonds as tax collector." He explains that, in 1862, he levied on the personal property of property owners who had defaulted on their taxes and attempted to sell slaves, but no offer of purchase was made. He states that slaves are no longer being sold at auction "for the want of bidders." In fact, over the last two years conditions have deteriorated further; the county being located just above Vicksburg, the presence of the enemy has prevented the transaction of business as usual. In January 863, the "Federals" established a permanent military post at Lake Providence, Louisiana, "which is but a short distance" from the county seat. The Federals have organized "negroes for the service of the United States" and the result has been the commission of "every species of outrage and violence with impunity." In this condition of things, the petitioner states, "to attempt to collect taxes or execute any other legal process would be idle and absurd."

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Citation information

Repository: Mississippi Department of Archives and History, Jackson, Mississippi