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MCDONALD'S HEIRS V. SMALLEY, 31 U. S. 261 (1832)

U.S. Supreme Court

McDonald's Heirs v. Smalley, 31 U.S. 6 Pet. 261 261 (1832)

McDonald's Heirs v. Smalley

31 U.S. (6 Pet.) 261




The plaintiffs entry of land in Ohio was made in the name of a person who was dead at the time of the entry. This entry is a nullity in the State of Ohio.

The case of Galt v. Galloway, 4 Pet. 332, cited and confirmed.

MR. CHIEF JUSTICE MARSHALL delivered the opinion of the Court.

This suit was brought in the Court of the United States for the Seventh Circuit and District of Ohio to obtain a conveyance for land which the defendants hold by a senior patent, and which the plaintiffs claim under a prior entry. The bill was dismissed by the circuit court, and the plaintiffs have appealed to this Court.

Serious doubts exist respecting the validity of the entry under which the claim has been made, and several points have been discussed at the bar. It is unnecessary to decide more than one of these questions, because that is decisive of the case. David Anderson, in whose name the entry under which the plaintiffs claim was made, was dead at the time. The entry therefore as was determined in Galt v. Galloway, 4 Pet. 332, 29 U. S. 345, is, in the State of Ohio, a nullity. This being the foundation of the plaintiffs' title, they must fail in their action.

Counsel at the bar have endeavored to distinguish this case from that, by treating the entry as one made in the name of the wrong person, through the mistake of the surveyor.

We do not think he is sustained by the fact or the law of the case. The decree is

Affirmed with costs.

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