Fussell v. Gregg - 113 U.S. 550 (1885)
U.S. Supreme Court
Fussell v. Gregg, 113 U.S. 550 (1885)
¥Fussell v. Gregg
¥Argued January 8-9, 1885
¥Decided February 2, 1885
¥113 U.S. 550
A court in equity has no jurisdiction over a suit based upon an equitable title to real estate unless the nature of the relief asked for is also equitable.
A court of the United States sitting in equity cannot control the principal surveyor of the Virginia Military District in the discharge of his official duties or take charge of the records of his office or declare their effect to be other than what appears on their face.
The plain meaning of the Act of March 23, 1804, 2 Stat. 274, to ascertain the boundaries of the Virginia Military District in Ohio is that a failure within five years to make return to the Secretary of War of the survey of any tract located within the territory, made previous to the expiration of the five years, should discharge the land from any claim founded on such location and survey and extinguish all rights acquired thereby.
The series of acts relating to this district, beginning with the Act of March 23, 1804, and ending with the Act of July 7, 1838, 5 Stat. 282, as revived and continued in force by later acts, are to be construed together, and as if the third section of the Act of March 23, 1804, had been repeated in every act of the series.
The Act of March 3, 1855, 10 Stat. 701, allowing persons who had made entries before January 1, 1852, two years time to return their surveys did not apply to those who had made both entries and surveys before the latter date.
The land office referred to in § 2 of the Act of May 27, 1880, 21 Stat. 142, relating to the Virginia Military District in Ohio is the General Land Office.
On the pleas and issues in this cause, the complainant has failed to make good the case stated in the bill.