Bartlett v. City of Medford

CourtUnited States State Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts
Writing for the CourtSANDERSON
Citation252 Mass. 311,147 N.E. 739
Decision Date21 May 1925
PartiesBARTLETT v. CITY OF MEDFORD.

252 Mass. 311
147 N.E. 739

BARTLETT
v.
CITY OF MEDFORD.

Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts.

May 21, 1925.


Exceptions from Superior Court, Middlesex County; Patrick M. Keating, Judge.

Petition by William F. Bartlett for assessment of damages for taking of real estate by City of Medford. On respondent's exceptions after verdict for petitioner. Exceptions overruled.


[252 Mass. 312]L. Withington, of Boston (C. B. Cross, of Boston, on the brief), for petitioner.

L. G. Brooks, of Boston, for respondent.


SANDERSON, J.

This is a petition for the assessment of damages caused by a taking of real estate by the defendant on July 8, 1924, to widen Salem street and Riverside avenue in Medford. The petitioner's property, consisting of 5,285 square feet of land with a brick building thereon, was located at the corner of the two streets. The city took 2,073 feet of this land and rendered valueless the portion of the building which remained after the taking.

[1] The testimony of the plaintiff tended to prove that before the taking his front land was worth $18 and his back land $16 per square foot, and after the taking that his remaining land was worth $14.35 per square foot; while the testimony of the respondent tended to show that the fair market value of the land before the taking was $4 to $5 per square foot and the value of the land remaining was not changed by the taking. In support of his contention that his remaining land was damaged, the petitioner, subject to the defendant's exception, introduced testimony that this land was sold by him in October, 1924, for $45,200, or at the rate of $14.07 per square foot. This testimony was properly admitted. Evidence of sales made after the date of a taking, has been held to be competent. Manning v. Lowell, 173 Mass. 100, 53 N. E. 160;Peabody v. New York, New Haven & Hartford Railroad, 187 Mass. 489, 73 N. E. 649. The fact that the price for the property was paid in large part by mortgages did not affect the competency of the testimony, provided the sale was a genuine one. Fourth National Bank v. Commonwealth, 212 Mass. 66, 98 N. E. 686. Sufficient testimony was introduced to justify a [252 Mass. 313]finding that the transaction was a genuine sale; and the trial judge instructed the jury that it was for them to say whether they believed the testimony in regard to this sale and that if they found it to be a genuine sale they might consider it on the question of the fair market value of the remaining land after the taking, but not as bearing on the value of the petitioner's land before the taking. They were further instructed that, if they found that the amount paid at this sale was increased by the proposed widening of Salem street and Riverside avenue, they should not consider such increased value in arriving at the value of the petitioner's property. The judge did not have the duty of deciding that the...

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14 practice notes
  • Guinan v. Famous Players-Lasky Corp.
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts
    • 6 Junio 1929
    ...this conflicting testimony it was the exclusive province of the jury to decide what testimony they would believe. Bartlett v. Medford, 252 Mass. 311, 315,147 N. E. 739. One of the bags containing the scrap film was taken by Bowditch to his father's place of business. Shirley, intending to t......
  • Fauci v. Mulready
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts
    • 9 Mayo 1958
    ...Inc., 334 Mass. 370, 374, 135 N.E.2d 660; Compare Coghlan v. White, 236 Mass. 165, 168-170, 128 N.E. 33; Bartlett v. City of Medford, 252 Mass. 311, 312-313, 147 N.E. The 'best evidence' rule, here involved, 'at common law is a preferential, rather than an exclusionary rule.' See comment on......
  • Morrison v. Cottonwood Development Co., 1419
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Wyoming
    • 2 Abril 1928
    ...of the court seems to have been rightly exercised in admitting the evidence." To the same effect is Bartlett v. City of Medford, 252 Mass. 311, 147 N.E. 739, and see Forest Preserve District v. Kean, 298 Ill. 37, 131 N.E. 117. It is said that the court was in error in excluding testimo......
  • Covina Union High School Dist. of Los Angeles County v. Jobe
    • United States
    • California Court of Appeals
    • 9 Octubre 1959
    ...be granted a wide discretion.' See, also, County of Los Angeles v. Hoe, 138 Cal.App.2d 74, 80, 291 P.2d 98; Bartlett v. City of Medford, 252 Mass. 311, 147 N.E. 739. (Emphasis added.) We should not assume that the trial court abused its discretion. In fact the rule is exactly the opposite. ......
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14 cases
  • Guinan v. Famous Players-Lasky Corp.
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts
    • 6 Junio 1929
    ...this conflicting testimony it was the exclusive province of the jury to decide what testimony they would believe. Bartlett v. Medford, 252 Mass. 311, 315,147 N. E. 739. One of the bags containing the scrap film was taken by Bowditch to his father's place of business. Shirley, intending to t......
  • Fauci v. Mulready
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts
    • 9 Mayo 1958
    ...Inc., 334 Mass. 370, 374, 135 N.E.2d 660; Compare Coghlan v. White, 236 Mass. 165, 168-170, 128 N.E. 33; Bartlett v. City of Medford, 252 Mass. 311, 312-313, 147 N.E. The 'best evidence' rule, here involved, 'at common law is a preferential, rather than an exclusionary rule.' See comment on......
  • Morrison v. Cottonwood Development Co., 1419
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Wyoming
    • 2 Abril 1928
    ...of the court seems to have been rightly exercised in admitting the evidence." To the same effect is Bartlett v. City of Medford, 252 Mass. 311, 147 N.E. 739, and see Forest Preserve District v. Kean, 298 Ill. 37, 131 N.E. 117. It is said that the court was in error in excluding testimo......
  • Covina Union High School Dist. of Los Angeles County v. Jobe
    • United States
    • California Court of Appeals
    • 9 Octubre 1959
    ...be granted a wide discretion.' See, also, County of Los Angeles v. Hoe, 138 Cal.App.2d 74, 80, 291 P.2d 98; Bartlett v. City of Medford, 252 Mass. 311, 147 N.E. 739. (Emphasis added.) We should not assume that the trial court abused its discretion. In fact the rule is exactly the opposite. ......
  • Request a trial to view additional results

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