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1st Session.

No. 22.

FREDERICK vs. WILSON.

PAPERS AND TESTIMONY

IN THE CONTESTED ELECTION CASE OF

BENJAMIN T. FREDERICK vs. JAMES WILSON

FROM THE FIFTH CONGRESSIONAL DISTRICT OF IOWA.

JANUARY 10, 1884.—Referred to the Committee on Elections and ordered to be printed.

No. 1.
NOTICE OF CONTEST.

B. T. FREDERICK )

18. JAMES Wilson. S

Before the Hon. House of Representatives of the United States of America.

IN THE MATTER OF THE CONTEST OF BENJAMIN T.)

Frederick

against JAMES WILSON FOR A SEAT AS MEMBER OF THE House of Representatives of the United States for the fifth Congressional district of the State of

Notice of contest.

lowa.

TO JAMES WILSOX, Esq.:

You are hereby notified that I, the undersigned, Benjamin T. Frederick, a citizen of the fifth Congressional district of the State of Iowa, residing at Marshalltown in said district, late candidate for the office of Representative in Congress in and for said district, hereby contest your alleged and claimed election to the office of Representative in Congress from said district at the November election held on the first Tuesday next after the first Monday of November, A. D. 1882, and claim the certificate awarded to you by the board of State canvassers of the State of Iowa, composed of the executive council of said State, is illegal and unjust, and I, the said contestant, hereby give you notice of the followng grounds of contest:

Specification first.

Your contestant alleges that the board of State canvassers at the city of Des Moines, consisting of the executive council of the State of Iowa, held on the 7th day of December, X. D. 1882, erred in awarding to you, James Wilson, the certificate of election ae Representative in Congress and in counting the returns from the several counties from the fifth Representative or Congressional district of Iowa, in this, to wit:

The said fifth Congressional district is composed of the following counties of the State of Iowa, to wit, the counties of Marshall, Tama, Benton, Linn, Johnson, and Iowa; that by the abstracts of the votes made by the board of county canvassers from said respective counties and duly certified to the board of State canvassers by abstract dnly made as provided by the laws of said State aud duly certified and returaed to the secretary of the State of Iowa.

The abstract of the vote from the said several counties showed the following votes were cast for the office of Representative in Congress.

From the said county of Marsball aforesaid for the said office the returns showed by said abstract that James Wilson received one thousand eight hundred votes, and that Benjamin T. Frederick received one thousand six hundred seventy-six votes for the said office.

From the county of Tama in said district the abstract of the votes as certified to said State board of canvassers showed that James Wilson received for the office of Representative in Congress one thousand nine hundred seventy-eight votes, and that Benjamin T. Frederick received one thousand four hundred seventeen votes for said office of Representative in Congress.

From the county of Benton in said district the returns of said county, made and certified to said board of State canvassers, showed that for the office of Representative in Congress James Wilson received two thousand seventeen votes, and for the same office your contestant, Benjamin T. Frederick, received one thousand seven hundred and sixty-eight votes.

From the county of Linn in said district the abstract of votes made and returned to the board of State canvassers by the said county canvassers showed that Benjamin T. Frederick received for the said office of Representative in Congress twentyeight hundred fifty-eight votes, and that James Wilson received for said office twentyeight hundred votes.

That from the county of Johnson in said district the returns made by the said county canvassers to the board of State cavassers shows that Benjamin T. Frederick, contestant, received for the office of Representative in Congress two thousand six hundred thirty-five votes, and that James Wilson received for said office of Representative in Congress one thousand eight hundred thirteen votes.

In the county of Iowa the returns made by its board of county canvassers to said board of State canvassers showed Benjamin T. Frederick, your contestant, received for said office of Representative in Congress fourteen bundred and six votes, and that James Wilson received for said office thirteen hundred thirty-five votes.

That said returns from said several counties constitute the entire returns from said Congressional district for the office of Representative in Congress, and tbat the aggregate vote, as shown by the aggregate returns, as certified by the board of county canvassers in said district for the office of Representative in Congress, showed that Benjamiu T. Frederick, your contestant, received eleven thousand seven hundred sixty votes, and James Wilson received for said office of Representative in Congress only eleven thousand seven hundred forty-three votes, giving your contestant a majority of seventeen votes over said James Wilson for said office.

That the board of State canvassers of the State of Iowa, by adopting an erroneous principle, erroneously and unlawfully counted as a part of a return certain votes, to wit:

Forty-eight votes not formally counted by the board of county canvassers of Marshall County, Iowa, in said district, for James Wilson, and eight votes for Benjamin T. Frederick, your contestant, the same not being a return of votes cast in Marshall County, Iowa. Said return so counted being a paper returned to said board of State canvassers in the form of a resolution, showing that no proper returns had been made from a certain election precinct in Marshall County, in said district, and the vote had not been counted by the county canvassers in said precinct. A copy of said paper is hereto attached, marked A, and made part hereof. And said paper was not made a part of the abstract of any return of the votes cast in said county and was not certified to as an election return and had not been counted as a return of the votes cast in said county, but simply certified up as an informal poll-book from Taylor Township, an election precinct, with the reasons of the county canvassers for not treating the same as a return from said precinct, and the said board of State canvassers erroneously counted as a return the pretended vote of said precinct illegally and unjustly, and without any anthority, and thereby changed the result of said election, and awarded the certificate of said election to said James Wilson illegally und unlawfully. That said paper A, above referred to, did not purport to be an abstract or a part of an abstract of the returns from said county; was not marked an election return, and was not sent as such, and it was no part of the duty of said State canvassers to examine or treat the same as a return. And said paper was made after the return of the abstract of the votes made and after the board of county canvassers had discharged their duty as such and adjourned, and were not acting as a board of county canvassers. That the board of State canvassers had no legal authority or power to revise the returns as certified to them, and had no right to treat said paper as a return or abstract of any votes returned from said county of Marshall, and by so erroveously and unjustly treating said paper as a return and crediting said James Wilson with forty-eight votes as returned from Marshall County not so returned they awarded to him illegally said certificate of election.

Specification second.

Your contestant, Benjamin T. Frederick, further shows and charges the truth to be that at said Norember élection held in the said fifth Congressional district in the State of Iowaon the first Tuesday after the first Monday of November, A. D. 1882, as aforesaid, in a certain election precinct known as Taylor Township, in the county of Marshall, in said district aforesaid, nine votes were in fact cast for him for which he should be credited, and as shown by the poll-books from said election precinct, for the office of Representative in Congress not counted by the board of canvassery of Marshall County, Iowa, in counting and abstracting the votes of said county in said district, and he, this contestant, is entitled to have the same counted for him.

And Benjamin T. Frederick, your contestant, further shows concerning said election in said township of Taylor, in the county of Marshall and State of Iowa, and in said fifth Congressional district, tbat at said November election in the year 1882, as aforesaid, held in said township, at which said election James Wilson and your contestant were voted for for the office of Representative in Congress, the said election was frandulently conducted in said precinct; that one of the judges of the election, William H. Stewart, wrongfully and fraudulently, on the afternoon of the day of said elect on and while the board of election were receiving the votes from the electors who were voting, wrongfully and illegally opened the ballot-box iu which the votes were being deposited and took out and handled and pretended to count over the ballots there cast in an unofficial way, and was permitted to handle the same and did after thus handling the votes and pretending to count the same close up and lock said ballot-box in said township election precinct, and it is believed changed the ballots thus cast, and said ballots left in the box were not the ballots cast by the electors who voted for contestant for said office; and said votes at said election precinct were afterwards connted in the absence of said Stewart and a return made, but the said return was illegal, fraudulent, and void, and should not be considered.

Your contestant, Benjamin T. Frederick, further shows that in Taylor Township election precinct, in said Marshall County, Iowa, five illegal vòtes were cast for James Wilson by persons not qualified to vote for the office of Representative in Congress, in violation of law the names of whom are to contestant unkuown.

Specification third.

Your contestant, Benjamin T. Frederick, shows that in a certain election precinct. in the county of Marshall, in the fifth Congressional district in the State of Iowa, known as Liberty Township, at the November election in the year 1882, in which election James Wilson and your contestant, Benjamin T. Frederick, were each voted for for a Representative in Congress, and at which election said James Wilson claims to be elected, a certain place designated by the trustees of Liberty Township as the place where the election to take place on the first Tuesday afrer the first Monday of November, A. D. 1882, was to be held, and it was the duty of such trustees of such township to give due notice of such change of place of holding such election by posting up notices in three public places in the township ten days before the day of election was to be held ; yet, the judges of said election at said November election, in the year 1982 aforesaid, wrongfully and unlawfully, and without cause, changed the place of holding said election in said precinct, without notice, to another place, a distance of two iniles from the place designated and appointed by the township trustees of said election, whereby several persons, duly qualified electors, who would have voted at said election for this contestant for said office aforesaid, were prevented from voting for him because of a want of notice of the place of voting at said election; and also at said election held in said precinct aforesaid, in the township of Liberty, county of Marshall, in the district and State aforesaid, four illegal, disqualified persons, not electors in said precinct, cast their votes and illegally voted for said respondent, James Wilson, for said office of Representative in Congress, the names of said persons being to contestant opknown.

Your contestant further shows that in said election precinct in Liberty Township, in said Marshall County, at said November election beld at the time and place aforesaid, in said precinct aforesaid, the said judges of election received the votes from the electors without entering the names of the electors upon the poll-books, and placed them in the ballot-box, and said judges of election were not sworn when the votes and ballots were received from the persons offering themselves as voters. That the same was done fraudulently; that the said judges of said election opened the ballot-box in said precinct in the middle of the afternoon of said day of election, before the time for closing the polls had arrived, and said judges and clerks of election proceeded to receive votes when the ballot-box was open and while they were counting the returns. and frandulently neglected to have the poll-books opened during the forenoon of the day, or enter the names of the persons voting thereon, and upon counting the billots, frandulently entered upon the poll-books sufficient names to correspond with the num

ber of ballots counted, and made a return thereof. That said return made was fraudulent and unjust, and the said return was made to show that James Wilson received for the office of Representative in Congress, sixty-three votes and your contestant only forty votes for such office. And the votes so returned did not show all the ballots cast at said election for said office for your said contestant, and he received five more votes than shown by the return made by said judges of said election, and the said James Wilson twenty-three votes less than counted and returned for him, and said twenty-three persons who were illegal, disqualified persons, not electors in said precinct, were permitted to illegally and did illegally vote for him, whose names are to contestant unknown.

Specification fifth.

Your contestant charges that at said election held in November, A. D. 1882, in the township of Green Castle, of Marshall, in said fifth Congressional in the State of Iowa certain evil-disposed persons, whose names are to contestant unknown, fraudulently and unlawfully, by falsely representing to certain illiterate voters and electors in said precinct who desired to vote for contestant, Benjamin T. Frederick, and so expressed themselves, received from such persons tickets upon which they were informed Benjamin T. Frederick's name was printed for the office of Representative in Congress, and believing the truth so to be, when, in fact, the said tickets had the name of James Wilson printed thereon, and twenty persons voted for James Wilson who intended to vote, and supposed they were voting, for your contestant for said office.

Your contestant also shows that at said election two votes were cast for him not counted or returned at said election for said office, and the said James Wilson received ten illegal votes cast for him in said precinct by persons not electors and not competent or qualified electors, and who had no right to vote, whose names are to contestant unknown. And that more votes were cast for him, the contestant, than were counted, and less votes were cast for said James Wilson than were counted for said office.

Specification sixth.

Your contestant, Benjamin T. Frederick, shows that at said November election aforesaid in the city of Marshalltown, county of Marshall and State of Iowa, in the fourth ward of said city, on the said day of election, while the polls were open one

- , a duly authorized and qualified elector of said precinct, came to the polls of said election and offered to vote for your contestant for the office of Representative in Congress, and he was refused permission to vote because be was, as alleged, not a citizen of the United States, when he was a duly qualified resident citizen and voter and elector of said ward and precinct, and entitled to vote at said election.

That several persons who were not electors in said precinct, and not qualified and not entitled to vote, to the number of five, were permitted to vote in said ward for James Wilson for said office. And at said election at the time aforesaid in the second, third, and fourth wards iv said city of Marshalltown, in said Congressional district aforesaid, to wit, three persons in each of said wards' who were not legally or law. fully qualified electors of said district, were permitted to vote and did vote for said James Wilson for the office of Representative in Congress at the aforesaid election.

That in the first, second, third, and fourth wards in said city more votes were counted by the election board for James Wilson in each election precioct than he actually received for the office of Representative in Congress, and less votes were counted for Benjamin T. Frederick than he received and were cast for him for said office.

Specification serenth.

Your contestant, Benjamin T. Frederick, shows that at said November election, 1882, aforesaid, in the county of Marshall and Congressional district aforesaid, in the following voting precincts in said county last aforesaid, to wit, Eden Township, State Center Township, Marietta Township, Minerva Township, Le Grand Township, Liscomb Township, Iowa Township, and Linn Township, all voting precincts in said county, five persons in each precinct aforesaid (each township being an election precinct), who were illegal and disqualified electors who had no right to vote, did vote illegally for James Wilson for Representative in Congress, and their votes and each of them counted for him, and there were counted for him in each of said townships more votes tban he actually received, and less votes than were actually polled for Benjamin T. Frederick were counted for him for said office of Representative in Congress for said district, and the names of said illegal voters who voted for said James Wilson are to contestant unknown.

Specification eighth. Your contestant, Benjamin T. Frederick, further shows that at said November election, A. D. 1882, held in said district and State aforesaid, in the township of Cedar, an election precinct in the county of Johnson, in said district aforesaid, the board of election canvassers in said precinct in counting out the ballots and the number of votes cast and in counting the number of ballots polled and in making return of the poll-books in said precinct committed an error. The said poll-books in said precinct show that one hundred twenty-eight votes were cast for Representative in Congress in said precinct, of which Benjamin T. Frederick received sixty-three votes. Yet the returns from said township duly made by the township canvassers only showed your said contestant received fifty-three votes, when in fact the ballots actually cast and the number of persons voting and the tickets show in fact said Benjamin T. Frederick did receive sixty-three votes.

That afterwards said error and mistake was discovered and a new return made correcting the error, but after the abstract of the returns had been made by the board of county canvassers to the secretary of state; and hence the said Benjamin T. Frederick, your contestant, received ten more votes than were counted and returned for bim in said precinct.

Also, that five persons voted for said James Wilson in said township for said office who had no right to vote in said precinct and were not qualified voters therein for office of Representative in Congress.

Specification ninth. Your contestant further shows that at said election aforesaid, in the district and State aforesaid, in the township of Big Grove, an election precinct in Johnson County aforesaid, in said district, there were polled for your contestant for said office aforesaid-there was one more vote cast for your contestant than was returned and certified by the board of canvassers in said precinct. And there was also counted two more votes for said James Wilson than he was entitled to receive in said precinct. Also, that five persons voted in said precinct for James Wilson for the said office of Representative in Congress who were not qualified voters in said precinct and had no right to vote, whose ballots were received and counted.

Specification ten. Your contestant alleges that at said November election aforesaid, in a certain election precinct known as West Lucas Township, in the county of Johnson, in the district and State aforesaid, the said James Wilson was credited in the returns from said precinct three ni ore votes than were cast for him, and Benjamin T. Frederick was credited with three votes less than were cast for him. And also that three other perBons not electors and not qualified to vote in said precinct voted for and were permitted to vote for said James Wilson in said precinct for said office of Representative in Congress, and that said abuve error in counting against contestant and in favor of said Wilson was an error in the vote for the office aforesaid.

Specification eleven.

Your contestant further shows that at the election aforesaid, in the district aforesaid, in the townships of Jefferson, Munroe, Hardin, Madison, Penn, Clear Creek, Newport, Graham, Scott, Union, Washington, Sharon, Liberty, Fremont, Pleasant Valley, Lincoln, East Lucas, North Iowa City, South Iowa City, and Big Grove Township, all in said county of Johnson and in said district aforesaid, in the State of Iowa, there were counted by the several township canvassers for the office of Representative in Congress for James Wilson three votes in each township more than he actually received and there were counted for said Frederick ten votes in each township less than he actually receivel, and also that in each of said townsbips five persons, not qualified voters and who had do right to vote in said precinct, voted for said James Wilson, and sucb illegal votes were counted for him for said office of Representative in Congress

Specification twelre.

Your contestant shows that at said November election, in the year 1882, in the precinct of Vinton, in the town of Vinton, in tbe county of Benton, in the district aforesaid, at said election aforesaid, ten disqualified persons pot voters or electors in said precinct wbere they voted, were permitted to vote illegally for James Wilson for the office of Representative in Congress, and their votes counted.

That in counting the ballots cast the judges of election permitted persons not officers, clerks, or judges of said election to count the votes; that spurious ballots were pat in the box for said Wilson, and more votes were counted for him than he actually received for said office; that persons not clerks of said election were permitted to count and handle the ballots while the votes were counted out, and to keep the tallylist and poll-books, and ten more votes were counted for said James Wilson than ne actually received, while ten less votes were counted for your contestant than he actually received for said office of Representative in Congress in said election precinct.

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