State v. Franc, No. 21337

Docket NºNo. 21337
Citation165 Colo. 69, 437 P.2d 48
Case DateFebruary 05, 1968
CourtSupreme Court of Colorado

Page 48

437 P.2d 48
165 Colo. 69
The STATE of Colorado, Plaintiff in Error,
v.
Godfrey C. FRANC and Mary E. Franc, Defendants in Error.
No. 21337.
Supreme Court of Colorado, En Banc.
Feb. 5, 1968.

[165 Colo. 71]

Page 49

Duke W. Dunbar, Atty. Gen., Frank E. Hickey, Deputy Atty. Gen., Clifton A. Flowers, Asst. Atty. Gen., Denver, for plaintiff in error.

Martin P. Miller, Littleton, Marjorie Worland McLean, Denver, for defendants in error.

MOORE, Chief Justice.

[165 Colo. 72] Godfrey C. Franc and Mary E. Franc, referred to herein as plaintiffs, filed their complaint in the trial court in which they named the State of Colorado and thirty-three individuals as defendants. The prayer of the complaint sought a decree quieting title in plaintiffs to certain tracts of land in Section 16, Township 5 South, Range 67 W in Arapahoe county, including a parcel containing 11.2 acres which is the subject of this controversy.

Plaintiffs in their complaint recognized that the state might 'claim some reversionary interest in part of the property herein,' but alleged that neither the state nor the other defendants had any valid claim or interest; that plaintiffs were the owners in fee simple of all the property; and prayed for a decree enjoining the defendants from asserting any interest and adjudging plaintiffs to be the owners in fee simple of all the described land, and entitled to possession.

None of the defendants appeared within the prescribed time to plead, except Clyde Pomponio as Administrator of the Estate of Virginia B. Braswell Pomponio, deceased, who filed an answer containing three counterclaims. Default judgment was entered against all other defendants on September 7, 1961.

Although, as subsequently appeared, the State Board of Land Commissioners as cograntor with the Governor of the parcel in controversy, was a proper party to the action, it was not named as a defendant--only the state alone; and plaintiffs had served the summons on July 26, 1961 upon Eleanor Giacomozia, the secretary to the Attorney General, at the State Capitol.

On October 19, 1962, the State of Colorado filed a motion to vacate the default entered against it, tendering an answer and counterclaim in which it was alleged that the tract here in controversy was owned by the state by reason of a provision in the deed executed by the State Board of Land Commissioners which created a possibility of reverter. The contention of the State

Page 50

of Colorado is [165 Colo. 73] that the language of this deed--through which plaintiffs claim--discloses a clear intent of the land board (grantor) to create an estate to last for an indefinite time, measured in terms of use, and to have that estate end automatically when the land is no longer used for the prescribed purpose. Copies of a deed and two patents were attached to the motion to vacate and upon these conveyances the state based its claim to ownership of the tract. The deed above mentioned was a right-of-way deed for a reservoir in which the registrar of the Board of Land Commissioners and the Governor had sold for a price of $10 an acre to the Denver Sugar Land and Irrigation Company, its successors and assigns, in fee simple, the 11.2 acres here in dispute. The deed was dated January 20, 1904. It contained, Inter alia, the following:

'It is especially agreed and understood that the land hereby conveyed shall revert to the State of Colorado if at any time it shall be used for other than reservoir purposes, or should the said reservoir be abandoned and discontinued, or if the said reservoir shall not be constructed and in operation within one year from the date hereof.'

The state alleged in its tendered answer that the reservoir either was never constructed, or if it had been created it had long since been abandoned, and that thereby all the estate of the original grantees and their successors in interest terminated automatically, and the State Board of Land Commissioners became vested with all title held by it prior to execution of the deed which contained the possibility of reverter. The two patents above mentioned conveyed fee title to the grantees named therein of larger tracts of land in Section 16, in which the reservoir site was located and completely surrounded it....

To continue reading

Request your trial
9 practice notes
  • People v. Rodriguez, No. 91SA112
    • United States
    • Colorado Supreme Court of Colorado
    • March 11, 1996
    ...death sentence. We will affirm the district court even when it reaches the "correct judgment for the wrong reason." See State v. Franc, 165 Colo. 69, 76, 437 P.2d 48, 51, cert. denied, 392 U.S. 928, 88 S.Ct. 2284, 20 L.Ed.2d 1385 (1968); see also Zigan Sand & Gravel v. Cache La Poudre, 758 ......
  • Michigan v. Long, No. 82-256
    • United States
    • United States Supreme Court
    • July 6, 1983
    ...The State petitioned to this Court, and we denied certiorari. 390 U.S. 1012, 88 S.Ct. 1261, 20 L.Ed.2d 161 (1968). In State v. Franc, 165 Colo. 69, 437 P.2d 48 (1968), the Supreme Court of Colorado held that under Colorado law title in a certain piece of property should be quieted in a citi......
  • Bayou Land Co. v. Talley, No. 95SC358
    • United States
    • Colorado Supreme Court of Colorado
    • September 23, 1996
    ...the analytical framework that led to its conclusion, we affirmed the result as supportable on at least two bases); Colorado v. Franc, 165 Colo. 69, 76, 437 P.2d 48, 51 (explaining that when the trial court enters a correct judgment for the wrong reason we will nevertheless affirm), cert. de......
  • People v. Holmes, No. 97SA200
    • United States
    • Colorado Supreme Court of Colorado
    • May 26, 1998
    ...13-4-102, 5 C.R.S. (1997). Although we disagree with the trial court's analysis, we affirm its judgment. See generally State v. Franc, 165 Colo. 69, 76, 437 P.2d 48, 51 (1968) ("[W]hen the trial court enters a correct judgment for the wrong reason we will nevertheless affirm it."); People v......
  • Request a trial to view additional results
9 cases
  • Michigan v. Long, No. 82-256
    • United States
    • United States Supreme Court
    • July 6, 1983
    ...The State petitioned to this Court, and we denied certiorari. 390 U.S. 1012, 88 S.Ct. 1261, 20 L.Ed.2d 161 (1968). In State v. Franc, 165 Colo. 69, 437 P.2d 48 (1968), the Supreme Court of Colorado held that under Colorado law title in a certain piece of property should be quieted in a citi......
  • People v. Rodriguez, No. 91SA112
    • United States
    • Colorado Supreme Court of Colorado
    • March 11, 1996
    ...We will affirm the district court even when it reaches the "correct judgment for the wrong reason." See State v. Franc, 165 Colo. 69, 76, 437 P.2d 48, 51, cert. denied, 392 U.S. 928, 88 S.Ct. 2284, 20 L.Ed.2d 1385 (1968); see also Zigan Sand & Gravel v. Cache La Poudre, 758 P.......
  • Bayou Land Co. v. Talley, No. 95SC358
    • United States
    • Colorado Supreme Court of Colorado
    • September 23, 1996
    ...the analytical framework that led to its conclusion, we affirmed the result as supportable on at least two bases); Colorado v. Franc, 165 Colo. 69, 76, 437 P.2d 48, 51 (explaining that when the trial court enters a correct judgment for the wrong reason we will nevertheless affirm), cert. de......
  • People v. Holmes, No. 97SA200
    • United States
    • Colorado Supreme Court of Colorado
    • May 26, 1998
    ...13-4-102, 5 C.R.S. (1997). Although we disagree with the trial court's analysis, we affirm its judgment. See generally State v. Franc, 165 Colo. 69, 76, 437 P.2d 48, 51 (1968) ("[W]hen the trial court enters a correct judgment for the wrong reason we will nevertheless affirm it.")......
  • Request a trial to view additional results

VLEX uses login cookies to provide you with a better browsing experience. If you click on 'Accept' or continue browsing this site we consider that you accept our cookie policy. ACCEPT