Iron Silver Mining Co. v. Mike and Starr Gold & Silver Mining Co. (143 U.S. 394)

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United States Supreme Court

143 U.S. 430


[Statement of Case from pages 394-398 intentionally omitted]

On the 20th February, 1885, plaintiff in error, plaintiff below, filed its complaint in the district court of Lake county, Colo., in which it alleged that on the 1st day of January, 1884, it was the owner and in possession of a certain tract of land, known as the 'William Moyer Placer,' consisting of 56.69 acres, the particular description of which was given; and that on the 1st day of December, 1884, the defendant wrongfully entered upon said premises, and ousted the plaintiff from possession thereof, and still wrongfully retained such possession. The defendant answered that the patent for said placer was issued on the 30th day of January, 1880, and contained the following reservation: 'That the grant hereby made is restricted in its exterior limits to the boundaries of the said lot No. 300 as hereinbefore described, and to any veins or lodes of quartz or other rock in place bearing gold, silver, cinnabar, lead, tin, copper, or other valuable deposits, which may have been discovered within said limits subsequent to the date hereof, and not claimed or known to exist at the date hereof; second, that should any vein or lode of quartz or other rock in place, bearing gold, silver, cinnabar, lead, tin, copper, or other valuable deposits, be claimed or known to exist within the above-described premises at the date hereof, the same is expressly excepted and excluded from these presents.'

It also alleged that at the time of the location of the placer claim and the survey thereof, and at the time of the application for patent, there was a known lode, vein, and deposit of mineral within the boundaries of said placer, called the 'Goodell Lode,' and that the patentee had knowledge of its existence. On the application of the plaintiff the case was removed to the federal court, and there a replication was filed denying the existence of any known lode or vein at or before the issue of the patent. The case was tried before a jury in November, 1885, which trial resulted in a verdict and judgment for the defendant, and thereupon the plaintiff brought the case here on error.

Mr. Justice FIELD, Mr. Justice HARLAN, and Mr. Justice BROWN, dissenting.

Ashley Pond, L. S. Dixon, E. O. Wolcott, F. W. Owers, and James McKeen, for plaintiff in error.

T. M. Patterson and C. S. Thomas, for defendant in error.

Mr. Justice BREWER, after stating the facts in the foregoing language, delivered the opinion of the court.


This work is in the public domain in the United States because it is a work of the United States federal government (see 17 U.S.C. 105).