Wolverton v. Nichols,
119 U.S. 485 (1886)

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U.S. Supreme Court

Wolverton v. Nichols, 119 U.S. 485 (1886)

Wolverton v. Nichols

Argued November 30, 1886

Decided December 20, 1886

119 U.S. 485


A having applied for a patent for a placer mine in Montana, B filed an adverse claim in the register's office under the provisions of Rev.Stat. § 2325, and commenced suit for the settlement of the controversy in the district court of the territory according to the provisions of Rev.Stat. § 2326. In the course of the trial, it appeared that, before the commencement of the suit, B had agreed with C, by a sufficient instrument under seal, to convey the premises in dispute to C "by good and sufficient deed of conveyance duly acknowledged," and that C was in possession when the suit was begun and still remained in possession. The Code of Montana provides that

"an action may be brought by any person in possession, by himself or his tenant of real property, against any person who claims an estate or interest herein adverse to him, for the purpose of determining such adverse claim, estate, or interest."

The court ordered a nonsuit, which judgment was affirmed by the supreme court of the Territory. This Court reverses the judgment of the supreme court, and holds that as C was holding under B, and as B was bound to C to have the title quieted, B had a right to have the verdict of the jury on the questions of fact at issue so as to settle the question which the act of Congress required to be settled.

This was a suit instituted under the provisions of §§ 2325, 2326, Rev.Stat. to determine adverse claims to mineral lands. The case is stated in the opinion of the Court.

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