121 Mass. 528 (Mass. 1877), Cottage Street Methodist Episcopal Church v. Kendall

Citation121 Mass. 528
Opinion JudgeGray C. J.
Party NameCottage Street Methodist Episcopal Church v. Edward Kendall, executor
AttorneyJ. W. Hammond, for the defendant. D. F. Crane, for the plaintiff.
Judge PanelGray C. J. Colt & Endicott, JJ., absent.
Case DateJanuary 03, 1877
CourtSupreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts

Page 528

121 Mass. 528 (Mass. 1877)

Cottage Street Methodist Episcopal Church


Edward Kendall, executor

Supreme Court of Massachusetts

January 3, 1877

Argued January 11, 1876

Middlesex. Contract to recover the amount of a subscription by Amos P. Rollins, the defendant's testator, towards the erection of a chapel for the plaintiff. Trial in the Superior Court, without a jury, before Pitman, J., who allowed the following bill of exceptions:

"It appeared that said church was organized in the manner shown by the records, and the trustees of the same chosen April 5, 1871, and said Rollins was chosen the treasurer of said trustees, and said church was reorganized, on account of some flaw in the organization, in August, 1872, with the same board of trustees -- all of which appears in said records," but is not material to be particularly stated.

"In April, 1871, after said organization, an informal meeting of persons interested in building a chapel for said church was held at the house of said Rollins, of which certain persons acted as chairman and secretary. A subscription was thereupon opened to see how much could be raised for that purpose. Various persons announced their willingness to give different sums, and the secretary, at the time, in their presence and with their knowledge, wrote down their names, and the amounts so promised by each opposite thereto. Rollins was one of those so promising, and said that his name might be put down for $ 500. He afterwards within a short time acknowledged and ratified such subscription orally. Being treasurer of the trustees, he also received some payments from individuals on account of such subscriptions.

"Some months after this meeting, and long before August, 1872, some trouble arose between Rollins and the other members, and Rollins at their request withdrew from the office of treasurer, and there afterwards voluntarily ceased all participation in the affairs of the society, except that he remained one of its trustees until the end of the year for which he was chosen, and was present at the reorganization in August, 1872. No demand was made on him for payment. He died in March, 1873.

"The chapel was built before Rollins's death, by and for the use of the plaintiff. There was conflicting evidence as to whether anything was done, or any liability incurred or obligation assumed, by the plaintiff in reliance upon the...

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