Research

New York State Commission to Investigate Canal Affairs List of Summoned Witnesses and Accumulated Receipts

Held by the New York State Archives


Overview of the Records

Repository:

New York State Archives

New York State Education Department

Cultural Education Center

Albany, NY 12230

Summary:
This series consists of a single volume used by the clerk of the New York State Commission to Investigate Canal Affairs to record information regarding witnesses summoned to appear before the commission. The back of the same volume was used by the clerk to record receipts for funds disbursed to the commission by its treasurer.
Creator:
Title:
Quantity:
0.2 cubic feet (1 volume)
Inclusive Dates:
1875-1876
Series Number:
B0333

Administrative History

In response to a special message communicated by Governor Samuel J. Tilden in March of 1875, the State Legislature adopted a joint resolution authorizing the governor to appoint a four-member commission whose duty it was to investigate the affairs of the canals of the State. The legislature followed this by enacting legislation (Chapter 91) empowering the commissioners to issue subpoenas requiring the attendance of witnesses and issue attachments requiring county sheriffs to produce witnesses refusing to obey said subpoenas. False testimony before the commission was deemed to be perjury. The commission was also given the authority to require that necessary documents be produced for its review and was empowered to employ such experts, agents, and other assistants as it deemed necessary. The commission was to report its findings and recommendations to the governor and legislature at the beginning of the following legislative session.

Scope and Content Note

This series consists of a single volume used by the clerk of the New York State Commission to Investigate Canal Affairs to record information regarding witnesses summoned to appear before the commission. For each witness, the volume lists place of residence (usually just city, or village and county), appearance date for which witness was summoned, date of actual appearance, date and means by which witness was summoned (subpoena, letter, telegraph, personal request, or voluntarily), and remarks (such as matter in which witness was summoned to testify, job title of witness, issues relating to contacting witness, and changes in appearance date).

The back of the same volume was used by the clerk to record receipts for funds disbursed to the commission by its treasurer. Disbursements are recorded for the payment of various expenses incurred by the commission in carrying out its business: messenger services, stationery, engineering services, salaries, stenography and phonography services, travel, telegraph services, witness fees, and miscellaneous services and expenses.

Use of Records

Access Restrictions

There are no restrictions regarding access to or use of this material.

Custodial History

The records were formerly stored at the Canal Museum in Syracuse by Dept. of Transportation Regional Office 3. They were transferred from the Canal Museum to the Archives on May 10, 1985.

Access Terms

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