United States v. Ingram - 172 U.S. 327 (1899)
U.S. Supreme Court
United States v. Ingram, 172 U.S. 327 (1899)
United States v. Ingram
Argued December 9, 1899
Decided January 3, 1899
172 U.S. 327
In 1890, appellee, under the Desert Land Act of 1877, applied to reclaim and enter a tract of land which was part of an even-numbered section of lands within the limits of the grant to the Union Pacific Railway Company. The entry was approved, the claimant made the preliminary payment thereon and received a certificate of entry. Subsequently he abandoned the entry, and it was cancelled in 1890. This action was brought to recover the sum so paid. Held that, as he had voluntarily abandoned the entry, he had no cause of action for the sum which he paid to initiate it.
United States v. Healey, 160 U. S. 136, examined and shown not to be inconsistent until this decision.
On August 2, 1890, the appellee, William F. Ingram, applied to the local land office at Salt Lake City, Utah, under the Desert Land Act of March 3, 1877, 19 Stat. 377, c. 107, to reclaim and enter a tract of land containing 236.55 acres. The land so sought to be reclaimed and entered was a part of an even-numbered section of lands within the limits of the grant to the Union Pacific Railway Company. The entry was approved by the local land office; the claimant paid the sum of $118.28, being 50 cents per acre, the preliminary payment thereon, and received an ordinary certificate of entry. He failed, however, to reclaim the land by conducting water onto it, as provided by the Desert Land Act, and abandoned his entry, which, on December 19, 1895, was cancelled. Thereafter this suit was brought to recover the money which he had paid to the local land officers. The Court of Claims, while expressing an opinion, on a demurrer to the petition, adversely to the contention of the petitioner, 32 Ct.Cl. 147, finally entered a decree in his favor, from which decree the United States appealed to this Court.