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The Statutes provide that all creditors shall be entitled to receive interest on all money after the same shall become due, either on bond, bill, promisory note, or other instrument of writing, or contract for money or property; on all balances due on settlement between parties thereto, or money withheld by unreasonable and vexatious delay of payment; and on all judgments obtained from the date thereof, and on all decrees obtained in any Court of Chancery, for the payment of money, from the day specified in the said decree, or if no day be specified, then from the day of the entering thereof, until such debt, money, or property is paid, at the rate of six per centum per annum, and no more.* [Act Jan. 12, 1824.)


No statute for the punishment of usury, as in New York, has been enacted in Ohio. That which relates to the subject of interest, fixes the rate at six per cent, and “no more.” No greater sum than at and after the rate of six per centum per annum is allowed. In the case of the Lafayette Benevolent Society vs. Lewis, (Ohio Reports) it was judicially determined, that a contract to pay more than six per cent cannot, but that legal interest on a contract to pay a certain principal and a rate of interest exceeding six per cent can, be enforced. The contract is valid for the principal and lawful interest, but void for the excess.

* Under the Statutes of Ohio concerning the interest of money, only six per cent per annum, for the loan or forbearance of money, can be recovered, even though the contract contain stipulations for the payment of a greater rate. [7 Ilam., 80.]

Interest upon interest is recoverable where instalments are sutiered to fall in ar: rear. In such case, the holder of the obligation is entitled to his interest upon the instalment, and interest due, from the day when the same became payable. [4 Ham., 373.]

In estimating the damages under a covenant of warranty, interest is not recoverable when the premises have been occupied by the warrantee. [5 Ham., 154.]



Source of Title to Lands in Indiana. Settlement thereof by the French. Capitu

lation to the English. The Quebec Act. Relinquishment of the Country by Great Britain. The Cessions of Massachusetts, Connecticut, New-York, and Virginia. Erection of the Territory Northwest of the river Ohio. Ordinance of 1737. Acts of Congress concerning the early settlers. The Erection and Division of Indiana Territory. Admission into the Union of Indiana as a State. Her Constitution. Land Titles generally. The Execution, Attestation, Proof, Acknowledgment and Recording of Conveyances. The Execution, Attestation, Probate and Recording of Wills of Real Estate. The Statute of Descents. The Levy and Collection of Land Taxes. Tax Sales, Forfeitures and Redemptions. Limitations and Exemptions. Interest of Money and Usury.




As the State of Indiana was erected from a portion of the territory of the United States lying north west of the river Ohio, the preceding chapter as correctly indicates the source, and history of land titles in this, as in the State of Ohio. For an account, therefore, of the native proprietors; of the exploration and settlement of the territory by the French; the acquirement and relinquishment thereof by Great Britain; the Cessions of Massachusetts, Connecticut, New-York and Virginia ; the treaties extinguishing the Indian right of occupancy; and the ordinance of Congress for the govern

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ment of the territory, the reader will see Ante 127 to 157 inclusive.*

Soon after the adoption of the Federal Constitution, the subject of the claims of the early settlers at and about Vincennes, was brought to the notice of Congress, and resulted in the passage of an act granting four hundred acres of land to each head of a family, who resided there in 1783, and the same to those or the heirs of those who had formerly resided there, but who had removed therefrom upon the condition of their return and occupancy thereof within the period of five years. The act also confirmed to settlers the titles derived by them of commandants of forts to the extent of four hundred acres to each person; appropriated to the inhabitants of Vincennes five thousand four hundred acres of land, at that place; and authorized the Governor to grant one hundred acres to persons enrolled in the militia at Vincennes the preceding year. '[U. S. Statutes, Vol. 1, 221.] This measure aroused the slumbering energies of the pioneers, and invested the settlements with an ambition for progress. Their land titles had been for a long period in a condition of uncertainty and painful solicitude. This act alleviated their anxiety, removed their doubts, and evinced a generosity on the part of the government that gave earnest of a brighter future.

In the course of events, all that part of the territory of the United States situated northwest of the river Ohio, and westward of a line commencing at a point nearly opposite the mouth of the Kentucky river, and extending northward to and beyond Fort Recovery, was erected into a separate territory by the name of the Indiana Territory, with a government seat at Vincennes.

* In 1774 an act called the “ Quebec Act" was passed, which established the Ohio river as the Southern boundary of Canada, and guarantied to the Catholic inhabitants residing in the territory, the right of trial by jury, and the undisturbed posBession of their churches and property. [Mc Gregor. ]



“Section I. Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That from and after the fourth day of July next, all that part of the territory of the United States northwest of the Ohio river, which lies westward of the line beginning at the Ohio, opposite to the mouth of Kentucky river, and running thence to Fort Recovery, and thence north, until i: shall intersect the territorial line between the United States and Canada, shall, for the purpose of temporary government, constitute a separate territory, and be called the Indiana territory.

“Section II. And be it further enacted, That there shall be established within the said territory, a government, in all respects similar to that provided by the ordinance of Congress, passed on the thirteenth day of July, one thousand seven hundred and eighty-seven, for the government of the territory of the United States northwest of the river Ohio; and the inhabitants thereof shall be entitled to, and enjoy, all and singular, the rights, privileges, and advantages granted and secured to the people by the said ordinance.

“Section III. And be it further enacted, That the officers for the said territory, who, by virtue of this act, shall be appointed by the President of the United States, by and with the advice and consent of the Senate, shall respectively exercise the same powers, perform the same duties, and receive for their services the same compensations, as, by the ordinance aforesaid, and the laws of the United States, have been provided and established for similar officers in the territory of the United States northwest of the river Ohio : And the duties and emoluments of Superintendent of Indian

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Affairs shall be united with those of Governor : provided, that the President of the United States shall have full power, in the recess of Congress, to appoint and commission all officers herein authorized ; and their commissions shall continue in force until the end of the next session of Congress.

“Section IV. And be it further enacted, That so much of the ordinance for the government of the territory of the United States north west of the Ohio river, as relates to the organization of a General Assembly therein, and prescribes the power thereof, shall be in force and operate in the Indiana territory, whenever satisfactory evidence shall be given to the Governor thereof, that such is the wish of a majority of the freeholders, notwithstanding there may not be therein five thousand free male inhabitants of the age of twenty-one years and upwards : provided that until there shall be five thousand free male inhabitants of twenty-one years and upwards, in said territory, the whole number of representatives to the General Assembly shall not be less than seven, nor more than nine,to be apportioned by the Governor to the several counties in said territory, agreeably to the number of free males, of twenty-one years and upwards, which they may respectively contain.

" Section V. And be it further enacted, That nothing in this act contained, shall be construed so as in any manner to affect the government now in force in the territory of the United States northwest of the Ohio river, further than to prohibit the exercise thereof within the Indiana territory, from and after the aforesaid fourth day of July next; provided, that whenever that part of the territory of the United States which lies to the eastward of a line beginning at the mouth of the Great Miami river, running thence due north to the territorial line between the United States and Canada, shall be erected into an independent State, and admitted into the Union on an equal footing with the original States, thenceforth said line shall become and remain permanently the boundary line between such State and the Indiana terri

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