Burfenning v. Chicago, St.P., M. & O. Ry. Co.
163 U.S. 321 (1896)

Annotate this Case

U.S. Supreme Court

Burfenning v. Chicago, St.P., M. & O. Ry. Co., 163 U.S. 321 (1896)

Burfenning v. Chicago, St. Paul, Minneapolis

and Omaha Railway Company

No. 277

Submitted May 1, 1896

Decided May 18, 1896

163 U.S. 321

Syllabus

While it is well settled that, in the administration of the public land system of the United States, questions of fact are for the consideration and judgment of the Land Department, and its judgment thereon is final, it is equally true that when, by act of Congress, a tract of land has been reserved from homestead and preemption or dedicated to any special purpose, proceedings in the Land Department in defiance of such reservation or dedication, although culminating in a patent, transfer no title, and the patent questioned in this case comes within that general rule of invalidity.

On March 20, 1890, plaintiff in error commenced his action in the District Court of Hennepin County, Minnesota, to recover possession of certain islands situated in the Mississippi River and within the territorial limits of the City of Minneapolis. After answer and trial had in that court, which resulted in a judgment for the defendant, and which judgment was affirmed by the Supreme Court, this writ of error was sued out.

Page 163 U. S. 322

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