The New York Times/Cannot Grant the Pension; Virginia Too Poor to Aid a Blind Confederate General

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Cannot Grant the Pension; Virginia Too Poor to Aid a Blind Confederate General

Appeared on the front page of the February 22, 1890 issue.


RICHMOND, Va., Feb. 21. -- The wife of Gen. A. L. Long, the blind Confederate officer who is petitioning the Virginia Legislature to allow him an annual pension of $300. is in the city to-day. This lady, who is the daughter of Gen. Sumner, a distinguished Federal officer, is now and has been for some years past the Postmistress of the town of Charlottesville, in this State. Soon after Arthur became President, Mahone made a determined but unsuccessful effort to secure Mrs. Long's position for a zealous henchman. Such a howl was raised against this attempt to oust a lady, and the wife of a blind and gallant ex-Confederate, that she was not removed.

During President Cleveland's Administration some Democrat, it is said, was equally unsuccessful in his efforts to procure the Charlottesville Postmastership for a political friend. Notwithstanding the experience of the politicians with Mr. Harrison's two predecessors, an effort has recently been made by an office-seeking Republican to secure Mrs. Long's place. It is understood, though, that this brilliant lady has again been victorious, and for the third time vanquished those of the other sex who have been ungallant enough to seek her removal. Mrs. Long is a lady of rare culture, and, it is said, has made a splendid officer. Her salary is probably about $1,000 a year.

A member of the legislative Finance Committee says that the body would gladly allow the pension to Gen. Long if they could, but the financial condition of Virginia will not admit such a thing.