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Kilty's Land-Holder's Assistant, and Land-Office Guide
Volume 73, Page 362   View pdf image (33K)
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362 LAND-HOLDER'S ASSISTANT.

that he did not do it for the benefit, or at the instance of the
owner of the certificate. This places the business upon a
principle and footing, so far as it goes, altogether new.
Nevertheless, as the warrant continues to bear the former name; as its
general nature is the same, being a warrant founded on a right,
by survey, remaining incomplete for want of a compliance with
prescribed requisites;as it has, by its descriptive
appellation, been subject to certain rules or usages of office, and as
the former rules of the land office have been virtually
sanctioned and confirmed by the legislature until superceded by
those which may be ordained by the governor and council, I
have ventured in the former part of this compilation to say
that it is not, any more than those of simple survey, of
resurvey, or of escheat, original in its kind; and it is for this
reason that I was so particular in tracing the rise of
proclamation warrants.

 

CHAPTER VIII.

 

OF ESCHEATS.

 IT has been mentioned in the former book that the system
of escheat had been retained by the state government, but
with some change in the rule, as well as in the incidents
attached to it. As all other doctrines and customs of feudal
origin seem to have been dissipated by the mere principle
and spirit of our revolution, without being expressly
abolished, this is presumed to have been kept up only through a kind
of necessity; for, under any government, property is liable
for want of heirs, or claimants, in the remotest or most
questionable degree, to be left without an owner. Land within
the limits of a state, not owned or claimed by any individual,
or body corporate, must be the general property of the state
or community, and those who administer the supreme power
of that state must have the right of disposing of it, without
which it would become an object of scramble and force,
reconcileable only to a state of nature. The legislature of
Maryland had therefore a right, under any name, and in any
form, to provide for exercising, or disposing of, the public
right to land left without legal owners. I have already
stated that land in the predicament understood by the term escheat
was the first description of public land (as we may now call
all that became vested in the state by means of the revolution
and its attendant acts) on which the assembly thought fit to
excercise a right of ownership; in doing this, they may be





 
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Kilty's Land-Holder's Assistant, and Land-Office Guide
Volume 73, Page 362   View pdf image (33K)
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