Title: John M. Binckley to Ulysses S. Grant, 15 August 1867
Date: August 15, 1867
Source: Transcribed from digital images or a microfilm reproduction of the original item. For a description of the editorial rationale behind our treatment of the correspondence, see our statement of editorial policy.
Location: National Archives and Records Administration
Whitman Archive ID: nar.02346
Contributors to digital file: Elizabeth Lorang, Melanie Krupa, John Schwaninger, and Nima Najafi Kianfar
August 15, 1867.
General U. S. Grant,
Acting Secretary of War.
I have the honor to return herewith all the papers relating to certain parcels of land, adjoining the grounds of Watervliet Arsenal, State of New York, sought to be acquired for the United States under the authority of a recent Statute—which papers were transmitted here by the Secretary of War on the 3d inst. for the purpose of aiding the Attorney General in the investigation of the Titles held by the proposed grantors of the premises, with a view to his passing upon their validity.
The property referred to is more particularly described as Lots 63, 64, 65, 66, and south half of Lot 67, situated in the Village of West Troy, formerly called Gibbonsville, in Albany County, New York, each of which Lots appears to be held by its present owner under a lease in fee, subject to a rent-charge vested in a different proprietor. From the abstracts and papers submitted, I arrive at the following Opinion:
1; That the proposed conveyance of Lot 63 from W. J. Snyder and wife, together with a conveyance of the rent-charge thereon, from Alex. McAllister and wife, will vest in the United States a good and valid Title in fee to said Lot.
2; That the proposed conveyance of Lot 64, from Peter Thalimer and wife, together with a conveyance of the rent-charge thereon, from the Trustees of Union College, will vest in the United States a good and valid Title in fee to said Lot, subject to the following apparent incumbrance, viz: a mortgage in favor of Jonathan C. Wright, to which reference is made in a Deed of said Lot from Henry Thalimer to the said Peter, dated March 1, 1851. This mortgage is not mentioned in the search certified by the County Clerk, which accompanies the papers.
3; That the proposed conveyance of Lot 65 from Jane Hunter, Delia McKean, Elizabeth Austin, and others, together with a conveyance of the rent-charge thereon from Alex. McAllister and wife, will vest in the United States a good and valid Title in fee to said Lot, subject to the following incumbrances, viz: an unsatisfied Judgment in favor of Wm. M. Bender against Geo. Hunter, dated July 27, 1857; and also a dower-estate in the rent-charge in favor of the wife of James Kidd, if living. The title to this rent is derived mediately from the said Kidd who, on the 1st of May, 1855, conveyed to John D. Livingston, by a Deed to which his wife was not a party; and the rent being an incorporeal hereditament, to which dower attaches, it accordingly passed to the present holder, subject to that incumbrance, to remove which a release from Kidd's wife, if living, is now required—or, if she is dead, sworn evidence of the fact. These remarks will suggest the necessity of having the wives of Mr. McAllister and Mr. Dunlop unite with them in their conveyances to the Government, of the rents charged on Lots 63, 65, and 67.
4; That the proposed conveyance of 40 feet off the south side of Lot 66, from Laura O. Deming, and husband, together with a conveyance of the rent charge thereon from the Trustees of Union College, will vest in the United States a good and valid Title in fee to the premises, subject to the following incumbrances, viz: A mortgage from the said Laura O., and husband, to Andrew Alexander, dated January 7, 1861,—and also one from same to same, dated December 30, 1863.
5; That the proposed conveyance of 10 feet off the north side of Lot 66, and the south half of Lot 67, from Martha Davis, together with a conveyance of the rent-charge thereon, from Archibald A. Dunlop and wife, will vest in the United States a good and valid Title in fee to the premises, subject to the following incumbrance, viz: a mortgage from the said Martha and husband to David Buel and others, dated March 11, 1851.
No Tax-Search having been furnished respecting either of these Lots, the foregoing Opinion is to be taken subject to any Liens affecting the same, for unpaid Taxes, that may be discovered on a future examination, which should be made before completing the purchase.
The incumbrances above pointed out should be satisfactorily removed and discharged by the proposed grantors, as also any Tax-Liens which may be found, before payment of the purchase-money for the property.
I am, General,
Very Respectfully, Yours, &c.
John M. Binckley,
Acting Attorney General.