Small v. Rakestraw,
196 U.S. 403 (1905)

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U.S. Supreme Court

Small v. Rakestraw, 196 U.S. 403 (1905)

Small v. Rakestraw

Argued January 18, 1905

Decided January 30, 1905

196 U.S. 403


A homestead claimant in a contest in the Land Department admitted he voted in a precinct in Montana other than that in which the land was situated, and that he returned there only often enough to keep up a good showing. The Secretary of the Interior, after reviewing some of the facts, "without passing upon any other question," laid down that a residence for voting purposes elsewhere precluded claiming residence at the same time on the land and decided against the claimant.

Held that the Secretary found as a fact, by implication, that the plaintiff not only voted elsewhere, but resided elsewhere for voting, that as the case presented no exceptional circumstances, this Court was not warranted in going behind these findings of fact and that the words "without passing on any other question" could not be taken absolutely to limit the ground of decision to the proposition of law, but merely emphasized one aspect of the facts dominant in the Secretary's mind.

The facts are stated in the opinion.

Page 196 U. S. 404

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