McEwen v. Den
65 U.S. 242 (1860)

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U.S. Supreme Court

McEwen v. Den, 65 U.S. 24 How. 242 242 (1860)

McEwen v. Den

65 U.S. (24 How.) 242

Syllabus

By the laws of Tennessee anterior to 1856, a deed for lands lying in Tennessee could not be acknowledged or proven in another state before the clerk of a court.

In 1856, a law was passed allowing this to be done. This statute was prospective.

The circumstance that the law of 1856 was called an amendment of the prior law does not change this view of the subject.

Where a deed was acknowledged in 1839, before the clerk of a court in another state, a copy of it from the record was improperly allowed to be read in evidence to the jury.

Where the defendant claimed under the statute of limitations and showed possession of Evans' coal bank, the validity of this plea will depend upon the fact whether or not Evans' coal bank is within the lines of the plaintiff's patent. The case remanded to the circuit court for the purpose of ascertaining this by a corrected survey made according to the rules laid down by this Court.

This was an ejectment brought under the circumstances stated in the opinion of the Court.

Page 65 U. S. 243

The principal question in the case was whether the possession of the defendants below was upon the tract of land claimed by the plaintiffs, so as to constitute a bar to the action through the statute of limitations. Maps were produced in court, but so many tracts of land were laid down upon them that it was difficult to decide the point. The arguments of counsel bearing upon it could not possibly be understood by the reader.

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