Lessee of Powell v. Harman
27 U.S. 241 (1829)

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U.S. Supreme Court

Lessee of Powell v. Harman, 27 U.S. 2 Pet. 241 241 (1829)

Lessee of Powell v. Harman

27 U.S. (2 Pet.) 241

Syllabus

Under the statute of limitations of Tennessee of 1797, a possession of seven years is a protection only when held under a grant or under valid mesne conveyances or a paper title which are legally or equitably connected with a grant, and a void deed is not such a conveyance as that a possession under it will be protected by the statute of limitations.

In the court below, the lessor of the plaintiff showed a regular title to the lands in question under a grant from the State of North Carolina, and proved that the defendant was in possession of the land in dispute.

The defendant proved that he had been in peaceable possession of the land for more than seven years, holding adversely to the plaintiff under a deed from the Sheriff of Montgomery county dated 14 April, 1808, founded upon a sale for taxes, but which sale was admitted to be void because the requisites of the law in regard to the sale of lands for taxes had not been complied with.

Upon the trial of this cause it occurred as a question whether, under the statute of limitations of Tennessee of 1797, a possession of seven years is a protection only when held under a grant or under valid mesne conveyances or a paper title which are legally or equitably connected with a grant, or whether a possession under a void deed is such a conveyance as that a possession under it will be protected by the statute of limitations. The judges being opposed upon this question, it was referred to this Court for their opinion.

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