Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Marshal McNeil

We clip the following paragraph, in respect to the retiring City Marshal, from the Democrat of yesterday. It is praise well merited. Mr. McNeil has made an excellent officer, and with our neighbor, we trust his successor my emulate him. A couple of slight errors occur in the notice below. The amount overlooked by the proper officer was a little over one hundred thousand dollars, which in every instance would have been lost to our city:

“It is due to Marshal McNeil, that we speak a word in his favor on behalf of the people of this city, whom he has so faithfully served for the past two years. As far as preserving the general peace of the city is concerned, it is a self-evident fact that there has been nothing of consequence lacking – nothing we may say, over which he could exercise control. Though Mr. McNeil was an officer under Republican rule, and a Republican himself, we are bound to confess that Davenport has never had a more competent Marshal. In the matter of the city taxes alone, he has saved the city thousands of dollars. In instances where thousands have hitherto been lost through inattention or lack of promptness, in enforcing collections on personal property. For the first time in ten years we venture to state, has the amount of delinquent taxes of any one year carried over to the next Marshal, has been less than a hundred dollars – we might almost say thousands. As was shown to the Council on Wednesday, Mr. McNeil has succeeded in reducing the tax assessed on personal property to a mere cipher. To do this required constant watchfulness and exertion. Personal property in this city is sometimes rather uncertain, and he who would collect taxes on it successfully must keep a sharp look out. Besides this he has assessed property in different portions of the city, that the proper officer had overlooked, to the amount of about two hundred thousand dollars, and collected the taxes thereon, thus saving the city a large amount, which the city in some instances would have lost entirely. This is what we should call keeping an eye on business. The city found an efficient officer in S. S. McNeil, and if his successor only does as well, he will never be justly accused of neglecting his duty.”

– Published in the Davenport Daily Gazette, Davenport, Iowa, Saturday, April 19, 1862, p. 1

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