Grover Cleveland

Veto Message

September 01, 1888

To the House of Representatives:

I return without approval House bill No. 5155, entitled "An act granting a pension to John S. Bryant."

The man for whom this pension is proposed never, so far as I can learn, did a single day's actual military service at the front, nor ever left in such service the State in which he was enlisted.

He enlisted December 7, 1863, in a Maine regiment; on the 16th day of the same month he is marked as a deserter, having failed to report after leave of absence; December 31, 1863, he is reported sick in hospital at Augusta, Me.; January 26, 1864, he is marked as having deserted from Camp Keyes, at Augusta, Me.

He was discharged January 14, 1865, for disability occasioned, as the surgeon's certificate declares," by a fall from a wagon while at home on a furlough, December 22, 1863." The certificate continues as follows:

Never has done a day's duty. Is utterly worthless and unfit for the Veteran Reserve Corps.

After his discharge the second charge of desertion was removed, and the first charge does not seem to be serious.

But he was injured while home on a furlough, his regiment still being in camp within the State of his residence; and although there are cases in which it seems not improper that pensions should be granted for injuries sustained during furlough and before actual return to duty, this does not appear to me to be one of them.


Grover Cleveland, Veto Message Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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