32 F.2d 965 (D.D.C. 1929), 4746., Steele v. Harrison

Docket Nº:4746.
Citation:32 F.2d 965
Party Name:STEELE v. HARRISON et al.
Case Date:May 06, 1929
Court:United States Courts of Appeals, Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit

Page 965

32 F.2d 965 (D.D.C. 1929)




No. 4746.

Court of Appeals of District of Columbia.

May 6, 1929

Submitted April 3, 1929.

Petition for Rehearing Denied May 25, 1929.

Appeal from the Supreme Court of the District of Columbia.

Walter C. Balderston and Leonard J. Mather, both of Washington, D.C., for appellant.

R. B. Dickey, of Washington, D.C., for appellees.

Before MARTIN, Chief Justice, and ROBB and VAN ORSDEL, Associate justices.

MARTIN, Chief Justice.

The appellant as plaintiff in the lower court filed a bill of complaint against the appellees, praying that a certain deed of conveyance theretofore executed by her be set aside upon the ground of fraud and also upon the ground that it was obnoxious to the proviso of section 1155, D.C. Code (then in force), providing that no married woman shall have power to make any contract as surety or guarantor. The lower court heard the evidence and dismissed appellant's bill. This appeal is now prosecuted upon a record containing the pleadings and the substance of the evidence heard by the trial court. We have carefully considered both pleadings and evidence, and we are convinced that the controlling facts in the case are in substance as follows:

On May 15, 1926, the appellant, Elsie A. Steele, was, and still is, a married woman, the wife of Lewis P. Steele, and was the owner as tenant in common with Blanche A. Davis of certain real estate situate in the District of Columbia, subject to certain trust incumbrances which are not in question in this case. At that time appellant's husband Lewis P. Steele, and William E. Davis, husband of appellant's cotenant Blanche A. Davis, were partners engaged in the real estate business in the District of Columbia, and were in need of funds with which to meet their obligations. They accordingly formulated a plan of having their wives place a trust deed upon the aforesaid property wherewith to secure funds for the use of the partnership. Pursuant to this plan appellant and her cotenant, acting under the direction of their husbands, on May 15, 1926, executed and delivered to Francis L. Davis, brother of said William E. Davis, a deed of conveyance in fee simple for the real estate aforesaid, without any consideration whatever moving to the grantors. On the same day said Francis L. Davis executed a deed of trust upon the property to...

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