EAST ALABAMA RY. CO. V. DOE, 114 U. S. 340 (1885)

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U.S. Supreme Court

East Alabama Ry. Co. v. Doe, 114 U.S. 340 (1885)

East Alabama Railway Company v. Doe

Argued March 20, 1885

Decided April 13, 1885

114 U.S. 340


Various owners of lands in Alabama granted to a railroad corporation of that state "and its assigns," in 1860, a right of way through the lands to make and run a railroad, the corporation having a franchise to do so and to take tolls, and it obtained a like right as to other land by statutory proceeding. It graded a part of the line. V., a judgment creditor of the corporation, in 1867 levied an execution on the right of way, and it was sold to V., and the sheriff deeded it to him, and he took possession of the roadbed. In 1870, he contracted with another railroad corporation to complete the grading of the line of road for so much per mile, and, on being paid, to transfer to it all his title to the franchise, right of way, and property of the old corporation. He completed the work and was not paid in full, but gave possession of the road, in 1871, to the corporation, and its franchises and road and property passed, in 1850, to another corporation, the defendant, against whom V. brought an action of ejectment to recover the roadbed:


Page 114 U. S. 341

(1) The right of way could not be sold on execution or otherwise to a purchaser who did not own the franchise.

(2) There was nothing in the contract to estop the defendant from disputing the right of V. to recover in ejectment on the strength of his title.

(3) V. could not recover.

This was an action of ejectment. The facts which make the case are stated in the opinion of the Court.

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