Moore v. McGuire - 205 U.S. 214 (1907)


U.S. Supreme Court

Moore v. McGuire, 205 U.S. 214 (1907)

Moore v. McGuire

No. 22

Argued March 1, 4, 1907

Decided March 25, 1907

205 U.S. 214

Syllabus

Where the bill is brought in the circuit court to quiet, and remove a cloud upon, the title of land alleged to be within the state and district where the suit is brought, and the cloud is based upon tax sales made under the authority of an adjoining state in which defendants claim the land is situated, although the chief difference may be upon the question of fact as to the location of the boundary line between the two states, if the construction of the act of Congress admitting one of the states to tho Union and defining its boundaries is also in dispute, the circuit court has jurisdiction of the case as one arising under the Constitution or law of the United States. Joy v. St. Louis, 201 U. S. 332, distinguished.

Under the acts of Congress of March 1, 1817, 3 Stat. 348, admitting Mississippi,

Page 205 U. S. 215

and of June 15, 1836, 5 Stat. 50, admitting Arkansas to the Union, the boundary line between the two states is the middle of the main channel of the Mississippi River as it was in 1817, and at the point where Island No. 76 is situated, it was at that time on the Mississippi side of that island, which has never been within the State of Mississippi, notwithstanding attempts on the part of that state to exercise jurisdiction thereover.

In this case, the court determined a controversy between private parties involving the location of the boundary line between two states favorably to the party in possession of the land involved under the authority of the state actually exercising jurisdiction thereover, but expressed doubt to whether court should in such a case go further than the actual conditions, rather than leave it to the other state, if dissatisfied, to bring a suit in its own name.

142 F. 787 reversed.

The facts are stated in the opinion.

Page 205 U. S. 218



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