Sivut kuvina

of his demand in the office of the clerk aforesaid; and upon failure to do so, he shall 2 February 1859. forfeit and pay fifty dollars to the party aggrieved, and all damages which he may have sustained in consequence of such failure or neglect.

Ibid. 11.

149. In all proceedings commenced under this act, the defendant may file a written undertaking, with surety to be approved by the court, to the effect that he will pay the Lien may be disjudgment that may be recovered and costs, and thereby release his property from the charged on giv lien hereby created.

ing security.

Ibid. 12.

150. Any person, having possession of the same, who shall make, alter, repair or bestow any labor on any article of personal property, at the request of the owner or Liens on personal lawful possessor thereof, shall have a lien on such property so made, altered or repaired, property. or upon which labor has been bestowed, for his just and reasonable charges for the labor he has performed and the materials he has furnished; and such person may hold and retain possession of the same until such just and reasonable charges shall be paid; but if possession pass from such person, by his consent, the lien shall cease.

Ibid. 13.

151. The provisions of section twelve of this act shall not interfere with any special agreement of the parties.

Special agree

Ibid. 14.

152. That the act entitled "An act to secure to mechanics and others," &c., approved ments. March 2d 1833, (a) and all other acts and parts of acts inconsistent with the provisions of this act, be and the same are hereby repealed.

Act of 1833 repealed.


12 Stat. 91.

153. All the powers conferred upon a justice or justices of the peace in the District 23 June 1860 1. of Columbia, by the existing laws, in the acknowledgment of deeds for the conveyance of real or personal estate, may hereafter be exercised by any notary public duly Notaries may appointed within said District of Columbia; and when certified under the hand and ledgments. official seal of such notary public, shall have the same force and effect as if taken or made by or before a justice or justices of the peace of said district.(b)


154. There shall be appointed by the president, by and with the advice and consent of the senate, a register of deeds (c) for the District of Columbia, who shall perform all the duties respecting the recording of deeds and other instruments of writing, and all other services connected therewith, authorized to be performed by the clerk of the circuit court of said district, by the fifth section of the act approved March 3d 1801, entitled "An act supplementary to the act entitled 'An act concerning the District of Columbia,'" and shall receive the same fees and emoluments for the same. And the said register shall receive and have the charge and custody of all the records, papers and property which may be in the custody or possession of said clerk of the circuit court, properly appertaining to and belonging to the office of the register of deeds.

14 Feb. 1863 3 1.

12 Stat. 651.

Register of deeds to be appointed.

of deeds.

155. That the secretary of the interior be directed to appropriate such rooms in any Ibid. 22. of the public buildings under his charge for the use of said register, as may be neces- Office of register sary for his accommodation, unless it shall appear to said secretary that such rooms cannot be so appropriated without interfering with the business of his department; and in that event the said register shall procure, with the approbation of said secretary, such rooms in the city of Washington as may be necessary for the security of the records and the convenient transaction of the business of said office.

13 Stat. 531.

156. All deeds heretofore recorded in the lands records of the District of Columbia, 3 Mar. 1865 3 1. which have been executed and acknowledged by femes covert (their husbands having signed and sealed the same) for conveying any real estate, or interest therein, situated Defective acknowledgments in said district; and all acknowledgments of deeds heretofore recorded, as aforesaid, validated. which have been made by femes covert (whether they have executed the deed or not) for the purpose of releasing their claims to dower in the lands described therein, situated as aforesaid, in which acknowledgments the form prescribed by law has not been followed; and all deeds heretofore recorded, as aforesaid, which have been executed and acknowledged by an attorney-in-fact, duly appointed for conveying real estate situated in said district; and all deeds heretofore recorded, as aforesaid, executed and acknowledged, or only acknowledged by such attorney-in-fact, for conveying real estate situated in said district, as to which the acknowledgment was made before officers different from those before whom proof of the power of attorney was made, and as to which the power of attorney was proved before only one justice of the peace; and all deeds heretofore executed and recorded, as aforesaid, for the purpose of conveying land situated in said district, acknowledged out of the District of Columbia, before a judge of a United States court, or before two aldermen of a city, or the chief magistrate of a city, or before a notary public; and all deeds heretofore executed and recorded, as aforesaid, (b) See supra 97. (c) See infra 159.

(a) 1 vol. 247, pl. 103.

3 March 1865. for the purpose of conveying land situated in said district, acknowledged by an attorneyin-fact, duly appointed, or by an officer of a corporation, duly authorized, who has acknowledged the same to be his act and deed, instead of the act and deed of the grantor, or of the corporation; and all deeds heretofore executed and recorded, as aforesaid, for the purpose of conveying land situated in said district, to which there is not annexed a legal certificate as to the official character of the officer or officers taking the acknowledgment; shall be, and the same are hereby, declared to be of the same effect and validity to pass the fee simple or other estate intended to be conveyed, and bar dower in the real estate therein mentioned, in favor of parties in actual possession, claiming under and through such deeds, as if such deeds had been, by such femes covert, executed and acknowledged, or acknowledged, in case of a dower right, in the form heretofore prescribed by law; as if such deeds had been executed and acknowledged by the grantor in the deed; as if such power of attorney had been proved before the officer or officers taking the acknowledgment; as if such power of attorney had been proved before two justices of the peace; as if such acknowledgment had been made before any judge of a state court, or before two justices of the peace; as if such attorneys-in-fact, or officer of a corporation, had acknowledged the deed to be the deed of the grantor, or of the corporation; as if such deeds had thereto annexed a certificate, in legal form, that the officer or officers taking the acknowledgment were really what they purport to be: Provided, That the certificate of acknowledgment by a feme covert shall show that the acknowledgment was made "apart" or "privily" from her husband, or use some other term importing that her acknowledgment was made out of his presence, and also that she acknowledged or declared that she willingly executed or that she willingly acknowledged the deed, or that the same was her voluntary act, or to that effect: And provided also, That when the power of attorney shall have [been] executed by a feme covert, the same shall be effectual and sufficient, if there shall have been such an acknowledgment of the same as would be sufficient, under the provisions of this act, to pass her estate and interest therein, were she a party executing the deed of conveyance; the record and copy thereof of any deed recorded as aforesaid to be evidence thereof, in the same manner, and to have the same effect, as if such deed had been originally executed, acknowledged and recorded according to law.

Ibid. 2. Acknowledg

157. The acts of congress approved May 31st 1832, and April 20th 1838,(a) in reference to the acknowledgment and recording of deeds of land situated in said district, ments of deeds, shall be taken and construed as cumulative with the acts of Maryland on the same

how taken.

26 March 1867 21. 15 Stat. 6.

158. Acknowledgments of deeds for the conveyance of real estate in the District of Columbia may be taken by the recorder of deeds for said district, or by a single justice How deeds may of the peace; and any such acknowledgment heretofore taken by a single justice of the


peace is hereby made and declared to be a valid acknowledgment: Provided, That nothing in this act shall be held to impair the title of bonâ fide purchasers who, by conveyances and formal acknowledgments, have, prior to the passage of this act, acquired paramount titles under existing laws.

159. The style of the "Register of Deeds of the District of Columbia" shall be "Recorder of Deeds of the District of Columbia."

3 March 1869 § 1. 15 Stat. 341.

subject, in force in said district at the passage thereof; and an acknowledgment made and certified in compliance with any one of said acts, and before any officers authorized by either of said acts to take an acknowledgment (whether in or out of the District of Columbia), shall be good and effectual; and if it shall appear that the grantor "acknowledged said deed," it shall have the same effect as if he or she acknowledged the deed to be his or her act and deed. And any acknowledgment made by a feme covert under either of said acts of congress (which shall be sufficient under the provisions of this act) of any deed executed by her husband, and heretofore recorded in the District of Columbia, shall be good and effectual to bar all claim on her part to dower in the lands described therein, situated in said district, although she shall not have executed the same.

Ibid. § 2. Fees of recorder of deeds.

160. The legal fees for the services of said recorder of deeds shall be as follows, viz. : The filing, recording and indexing, or for making certified copy of any instrument containing two hundred words or less, fifty cents, and fifteen cents for each additional hundred words, to be collected at the time of filing, and when the copy is made.

For each certificate and seal, twenty-five cents.

For searching records extending back two years or less, next preceding current date, twenty-five cents, and five cents for each additional year, to be paid by the party for whom the search may be made.

For recording a town plat, three cents for each lot such plat may contain.

(a) 1 vol. 249, pl. 105, 108.

For recording a plat or survey, five cents for each course such survey may contain.
For filing and indexing any paper, required by law to be filed in his office, fifteen


For each examination of title, by the party or his attorney, fifty cents.

For taking any acknowledgment, fifty cents.

161. All deeds of conveyance, leases, powers of attorney, and other written instruIbid. 23. ments required by law to be filed and recorded, and all copies of instruments and Certain records records and certificates authorized by law, filed, recorded, made and certified by to be valid. William G. Flood, as acting register of deeds for said district, since the death of Edward C. Eddie, late register, up to the date of the appointment and qualification of his successor, shall be and are hereby declared to be legally performed, the same as if the said William G. Flood had been legally appointed and qualified as register of deeds.

3 March 1869.


15 Stat. 340.

162. Whenever a will or codicil shall be exhibited for probate to the orphans' court 3 March 1889 a 1. of the District of Columbia, if any of the witnesses to the same shall reside out of said district, or be temporarily absent therefrom, at the time when said will or codicil shall be so exhibited for probate, it shall and may be lawful for said court to issue, upon personal notice of not less than twenty days, to all parties in interest, a commission to one or more competent persons, to take the deposition of such absent witness or witnesses, in such form as said court may prescribe, touching the execution of such will or codicil, and the competency of the testator or testatrix, at the time of the execution thereof; and such deposition, when returned to said court, shall be received therein as competent evidence, and have the same force and effect as if said witness or witnesses were personally present and testifying in said court: Provided, That in all such cases the original will or codicil shall accompany such commission, and be exhibited to the witnesses so testifying.

Probate may be mission.

taken by com


16 Stat, 45.

ried women in

163. In the District of Columbia, the right of any married woman to any property, 10 April 1869 3 1. personal or real, belonging to her at the time of marriage, or acquired during marriage, in any other way than by gift or conveyance from her husband, shall be as absolute as Rights of marif she were feme sole, and shall not be subject to the disposal of her husband, nor be their separate liable for his debts; but such married woman may convey, devise and bequeath the property. same, or any interest therein, in the same manner and with like effect as if she were unmarried.

164. Any married woman may contract, and sue and be sued, in her own name, in all Ibid. 2. matters having relation to her sole and separate property, in the same manner as if she May contract were unmarried; but neither her husband nor his property shall be bound by any such and sue in their contract, nor liable for any recovery against her in any such suit, but judgment may be enforced by execution against her sole and separate estate in the same manner as if she were sole.

own name.


165. The circuit court for the District of Columbia shall have jurisdiction of all appli- 19 June 1860 3 1. cations for divorces, to be made by petition, upon which the same proceedings shall be had as are had in other cases, except so far as is otherwise hereinafter provided.


12 Stat. 59. Jurisdiction. 166. The petition for a divorce shall specify the causes therefor with certainty ; (a) and Ibid. 2. upon the same being filed, the clerk shall issue summons for the defendant to appear Petition. and answer. If it shall appear by the affidavit of a disinterested witness, that the Process and redefendant is a non-resident of this district, or has been absent therefrom for the space of six months, the circuit court, after the return of one summons, not found, may authorize notice of the pendency of the petition to be given, by publication in such manner as it shall direct. The court shall proceed to hear and determine such cause, whenever such summons shall have been served twenty days, or such publication made forty days before the commencement of the term. No judgment for a divorce shall be rendered on Proof. default without proof; nor shall any admissions contained in the answer of the defendant be taken as proof of the facts charged as the ground of the application, but the same shall in all cases be proved by other evidence.

Ibid. 3.

167. A divorce a vinculo matrimonii (from the bond of marriage) may be granted in any of the following cases, to wit:

Causes of divorce


I. Where such marriage was contracted whilst either of the parties thereto had a a vinculo matriformer wife or husband living, unless the former marriage shall have been lawfully dissolved, and no restraint shall have been imposed on the party contracting such second marriage:

(a) See Hoffman v. Hoffman, 30 Penn. St. 417.

II. Where such marriage was contracted during the lunacy of either party; or where either party was matrimonially incapacitated at the time of the marriage: IIL Where either party has committed adultery during the marriage.

Ibid. ? 4.

168. A divorce a mensa et thoro (from bed and board) may be granted for either of the Causes of divorce following causes, to wit: cruelty of treatment, endangering the life or health of one of a mensa et thoro.

the parties; (a) reasonable apprehension, to the satisfaction of the court, of bodily harm; (b) the wilful desertion and abandonment by the party complained against of the party complaining, for the full uninterrupted space of three years.(c)

169. No divorce shall be granted for any cause which shall have occurred out of this district, unless the party applying for the same shall have resided within the district for two years next preceding the application.

19 June 1860.

Ibid. § 5. Residence.

170. Upon the dissolution of a marriage on account of either of the parties having a former wife or husband living, if it shall appear that the second marriage was contracted in good faith by the party whose second marriage has been thus dissolved, and to bastardize the with the full belief on his or her part that the former wife or husband was dead, that

Ibid. 6. When divorce on the ground of not


fact shall be stated in the judgment or sentence of divorce; and the issue of such second marriage, born or begotten before the commencement of the suit, shall be deemed to be the legitimate issue of the parent who, at the time of the marriage, was capable of contracting.

171. Upon the dissolution of a marriage on account of the lunacy of either party at the time of such marriage, the issue of the marriage shall be deemed to be legitimate. 172. A divorce for causes not herein before specially provided for, shall not affect the legitimacy of the issue of the marriage; but the legitimacy of such issue, if questioned, shall be tried and determined according to the course of the common law.

173. In all cases where a divorce is granted, the court allowing the same shall have power, if it see fit, to award alimony to the wife, and to retain her right of dower, and to award to the wife such property, or the value thereof, as she had when she was married, or such part, or the value thereof, as the court may deem reasonable, having a regard to the circumstances of the husband at the time of the divorce. The court may also, in granting a divorce a vinculo matrimonii, restore to the wife her maiden or other previous name.

Ibid. 7.
Ibid. 28.
Other causes.

Ibid. 9. Alimon


Ibid. 2 10.

174. The court shall also have power to order and direct, in every case of divorce, who Custody of child- shall have the guardianship and custody of the children of the marriage so divorced, and who shall be charged with their maintenance.


Ibid. 11.

Ibid. § 12. When alimony to be forfeited, &c.

Ibid. 13. Deserted wife may have the privileges of a feme sole.

Proceedings to vacate order.

175. The court may also award alimony to the wife for her sustenance, during the pendency of a petition for a divorce filed for any of the causes aforesaid. (d)

176. In case of adultery by the wife, committed after judgment or sentence of divorce mensa et thoro, the court may, on the petition of the husband setting forth and accompanied by legal proof of such adultery, deprive the wife of alimony from the date of her said criminal act, and rescind her right of dower, as well as dispossess her, if the court judge fit, of the care, custody and guardianship of any child or children, which, under the original judgment of the court in granting the divorce, may have been assigned to her.


177. A wife deserted by her husband may, at any time after such desertion, apply to the court in session, or to either one of the judges thereof, when the court is not in session, for an order to protect any money or other property, real or personal, of which she may have become possessed after such desertion, against her husband or his creditors, or any one claiming through or under him; and the court or a judge thereof, as the case may be, if the fact of such desertion be proved by evidence other than that of the wife herself, and that the same was without reasonable cause, and that the wife is maintaining herself by her own industry or property, may make and give to the wife an order protecting her earnings, money and property aforesaid, real or personal, acquired since the commencement of such desertion, from her husband and all creditors and persons claiming through or under him, and such earnings, money or property aforesaid shall belong to the wife as if she were a feme sole: Provided always, That every such order shall, within ten days after the making and giving thereof, be entered by the clerk of the court on the records of the county of Washington, in the District of Columbia; and that it shall be lawful for the husband and any creditor claiming through or under him, to apply to the court in session for the discharge thereof, and he may obtain it if, in the judgment of the court, good cause shall be shown why such

(a) See Butler v. Butler, 1 Pars. 329. Paterson v. Paterson, 12 Eng. L. & Eq. 19, 29. Richards v. Richards, 1 Grant 389; 40 Penn. St. 225. Ingersoll v. Ingersoll, 49 Penn. St. 249.

(b) See Cattison v. Cattison, 22 l'enn. St. 275. Eschbach v. Eschbach, 23 Penn. St. 343.

(c) See Butler v. Butler, 1 Pars. 329.

(d) See Auld v. Auld, 4 Cr. C. C. 84. Denton v. Denton, 1 Johns. Ch. 364-5. If the husband be respondent, such order will be enforced by attachment; if libellant, by staying proceedings until it be complied with. But in order to obtain an attachment, it must be shown that he is of ability to pay. Ormsby v. Ormsby, 1 Phila. 578-9. Walker v. Walker, 1 Curteis 564.


order, by reason of fraud, or of repugnance to the objects of this section, should not have 19 June 1860. been first made and given: Provided also, That if the husband, or any creditor of or Wife may sue for person claiming through or under him, shall seize or continue to hold any property of detention of her the wife, after notice and record of any such order, then the husband or such person shall be liable at the suit of the wife (which she is hereby empowered to bring) to restore to her the specific property, and also for a sum equal to double the value of the Damages. property so seized or held after such notice aforesaid. And if any such order of protection be made, the wife shall, during the continuance thereof, be and be deemed to have been, during such desertion of her, in the like position in all respects with regard to property and contracts, and suing and being sued, as she would be if a feme sole.


14 Stat. 343.

of mineral

178. All manufacturers and venders of mineral waters and other beverages, by law 28 July 1866 2 1. allowed to be sold in bottles, upon which their names or their mark or marks shall be respectively impressed, may file with the clerk of the supreme court of the District of Manufacturers Columbia a description of such bottles and of the name or marks thereon, and shall waters, &c, may cause the same to be published, for not less than two weeks, successively, in a daily or weekly newspaper, published in said District of Columbia.

register their marks.

179. It is hereby declared to be unlawful for any person or persons, hereafter, without the permission of the owner or owners thereof, to fill with mineral waters or other beverages any such bottles so marked, for sale, or to traffic in any such bottles so marked, and not bought by him or her of such owner or owners thereof; and every person so offending shall be liable to a penalty of fifty cents for every bottle so filled, or sold, or used, or disposed of, or bought, or trafficked in, for the first offence; and of five dollars for every subsequent offence, to be recovered as other fines in said District of Columbia.


15 Stat. 33.

180. Any person being a resident of the District of Columbia, being desirous to 20 Dec. 1867 % 2. have his or her name changed, may file a petition in the supreme court of the said District of Columbia, setting forth therein the reasons therefor, and also the name How names of desired to be assumed; notice of the filing of such petition, containing the substance Page may be changed. and prayer thereof, shall be published for three consecutive weeks in some newspaper in general circulation published in said district, prior to the hearing of said petition. The said supreme court, or the justice holding the civil term thereof, on proof of such notice, and upon such showing as may be deemed satisfactory, may change the name of such applicant according to the prayer of such petition.


12 Stat. 88.

malicious tres

181. Every person who shall wilfully and maliciously, or wantonly and without cause, 22 June 1860 & 1. in the District of Columbia, cut down or destroy, or by girdling, lopping or otherwise injuring, any fruit or other tree, not his own, standing or growing for shade, ornament Punishment of or other useful purpose, or shall maliciously destroy, mutilate or otherwise injure any passes. statuary, monument or other work of art, standing or being on land not his own, or shall maliciously break down or injure any fence enclosing or belonging to another's land, or shall maliciously sever from the freehold of another any product thereof, or anything attached thereto, shall be punished by imprisonment in jail not more than three months, or by a fine not exceeding one hundred dollars.

Ibid. 2.


182. Every person who, in said district, without color of right, shall wilfully commit any trespass by cutting down or destroying any timber or wood standing on the land For wilful tresof another, or by carrying away any kind of timber or wood, cut down or lying on such passes on the land, or by digging up or carrying away any stone, ore, gravel, clay, sand, turf or mould from such land, or any roots, fruit or plant there being, or by cutting down or carrying away any grass, hay, grain or corn standing or being on such land, shall be punished by imprisonment in jail not more than sixty days, or by a fine not exceeding sixty dollars.

Ibid. § 2.

Penalty for vending bottles so gistered.

marked and re

Ibid. 3.

183. Every person who, in said district, without color of right, shall wilfully commit any trespass, by entering upon the garden, orchard or other improved land of another, For trespassing with intent to cut, take, carry away, destroy or injure the trees, grain, grass, hay, fruit on gardens, &c. or vegetables there growing or being, shall be punished by imprisonment in jail not more than forty days, or by a fine not exceeding fifty dollars.

Ibid. 4.

184. Justices of the peace shall have exclusive original jurisdiction in all cases mentioned in the preceding sections; saving, however, to any party convicted before such Jurisdiction of justice, the right to a trial by jury, on his appeal to the criminal court. justices of the peace. Ibid. 5. Appeals regula

185. Every person convicted before a justice of the peace of any offence named in this act, and appealing therefrom, shall be committed to abide the sentence of the criminal court, until he shall recognise, with sureties, in such reasonable sum as the ted. justice shall require, with condition to appear at said court, there to prosecute his

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