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JAMES v. HYMAN

July 16, 1958

JACK JAMES, OTIS JAMES, GENEVA JAMES MCCUTCHEN, HESTER BUTLER, CAREY ORRIE, SYLVESTER JAMES, GENEVA JAMES BRUNSON, AND EIGHTY OTHER NAMED PLAINTIFFS, APPELLANTS,
v.
GEORGE HYMAN, RESPONDENT.



Per curiam.

The decree of Judge Lewis follows:

This case was commenced on the fourth day of June, 1951. The complaint alleges that the plaintiffs and defendant own adjoining tracts of land and that a dispute has arisen between them as to the location of the boundary line between the two tracts. It is alleged among other things in the complaint that "the plaintiffs have no plain and adequate remedy at law to redress the wrongs already perpetrated on them by the defendant and to prevent the continuance of such actions against them in the future by the defendant, and will suffer great and irreparable injury unless this court affords to them proper and full relief."

The prayer of the complaint is as follows:

Wherefore, plaintiffs pray:

(1) That this court sitting in equity ascertain, determine and fix the location of the boundary line dividing the land of the plaintiffs from the land of the defendant.

(2) That it enforce its decree by issuing a permanent injunction against all the parties hereto requiring them and their successors henceforth to observe in all respects the line so established.

(3) That the plaintiffs be granted such other and further relief herein as may be just, proper and equitable.

The tract of land alleged to be owned by plaintiffs and concerning which the boundary line is in dispute is described in the complaint as follows:

"All that certain tract of land located in Florence County, South Carolina, containing one hundred and nine (109) acres, more or less, known as the Grice Tract, and bounded as follows: on the north and east by lands of the estate of Ervin James, deceased; on the south by lands of George Hyman, formerly of N.S. Gibson; and on the west by lands of T.D. Hinds, formerly of R. Willoughby."

The defendant answered with a general denial and then set up that the boundary line of his land "has been well established for a great many years and that the plaintiffs Geneva Butler, Jack James and Otis James have for the past few years been continuously trespassing upon his land and refused to stop after demand made upon them by the defendant."

He further alleges that he is entitled to have the boundary line of his land determined in this action and after such determination, to a permanent injunction restraining the plaintiffs from trespassing or entering upon his land. The description of defendant's land is:

"All that certain piece, parcel or tract of land situate, lying and being in the County of Florence, State of South Carolina, containing eleven hundred seventy-four (1,174) acres and being bounded as follows: on the north by lands of the James Estate; on the east by lands of Atlantic Coast Lumber Company; on the south by the old Marion highway; and on the west by lands of Hinds."

By order of reference to take the testimony and report it to this court, the case was referred to Hon. C.W. Muldrow, Master in Equity for Florence County. Six hearings were held before the master over a period commencing February 4, 1953, and ending September 13, 1956. The transcript of the testimony has been filed in this court by the master with his report of July 24, 1957. Hon. G. Badger Baker, Judge of the Twelfth Judicial Circuit, having disqualified himself in the cause, it comes before me by consent of counsel.

From an examination of the pleadings, it appears that the only question at issue is the location of the boundary line which is in dispute. The plaintiff relies upon a line, Plaintiffs' Exhibit No. 2, shown on a plat dated April, 1951, made by C.P. Roberts, C.E., which shall be designated hereinafter for convenience as the James line. The defendant relies upon a line, Defendant's Exhibit B-2, ...


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