Campbell v. Boyreau - 62 U.S. 223 (1858)
U.S. Supreme Court
Campbell v. Boyreau, 62 U.S. 21 How. 223 223 (1858)
Campbell v. Boyreau
62 U.S. (21 How.) 223
This Court has heretofore decided in several cases that in order to bring the questions of law before this Court by writ of error, the facts must be found in
the court below by a jury by a general or special verdict or must be agreed upon in a case stated.
And also that where the parties agree that the court shall decide questions both of law and fact, none of the questions decided, either of fact or law, can be reviewed by this Court on a writ of error.
The practice in Louisiana is an exception to this general rule, as that practice is sanctioned by the act of Congress which requires the courts of the United States to conform to the practice of the state courts.
The case having been decided by this Court upon a point of practice, it is necessary to state only so much of its as to show how the point of practice arose.
It was a suit in the nature of an ejectment, brought by Boyreau to recover all the undivided half of an undivided eighteenth part of that certain tract of land, rancho, or farm, known as the "Rancho San Leandro," situate in the County of Alameda, state aforesaid, bounded as follows: on the north by the San Leandro Creek; on the west by the Bay of San Francisco; on the south by the San Lorenzo Creek; and on the east by a line commencing on the southern bank of the San Leandro Creek at a point on said bank from whence a line bearing south, 29 degrees east, will strike the eastern bank of a lagoon, situated about six or seven chains south of said creek, thence running on said line about two hundred and sixty-two 262 chains, parallel with a ridge of hills running from the San Leandro Creek to the San Lorenzo Creek, at a point at the base of the foot hills on the said creek.
Upon the trial, the whole case was submitted to the court, a jury being expressly waived by agreement of parties, and the evidence and arguments of counsel being heard, the court proceeded to find a long history of facts, which is set forth in the record. The copy of the grant offered in evidence excluded land on the east occupied by the Indians, and the court, in its finding, ran the east line in such a way as to exclude two of the defendants, who were pronounced not guilty. All the evidence
necessary for the court to make up its opinion upon this point, and also upon other facts in the case, would seem to belong more appropriately to a jury. The second bill of exceptions contained the elaborate opinion of the court, in which questions of fact and questions of law were all decided.