Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Testimony of C. Wayne Leach from Leach vs Leach lawsuit.

The following testimony of C. Wayne Leach was taken 11 February 1948; this post is the eighth of eleven. The background (explanation) for this testimony can be found in my post dated 23 July 2014.


Chester F. Leach, Clyde F. Leach, Oscar Leach, Otis Leach, Ersa Leach, and Samuel Leach, Plaintiffs.


S. D. Leach, Defendant.


Also the deposition of C. Wayne Leach taken at the same time and place and for the purpose stated in the caption. Witness being first duly sworn and examined by Otto C. Martin, attorney for defendant, testified as follows.

Q. 1   State your name?
A.   C. Wayne Leach.

Q. 2   How old are you?
A.   I am 54.

Q. 3   Where do you live?
A.   I live just out of Hartford.

Q. 4   Where were you born and reared?
A.   Near Bald Knob.

Q. 5   Or Rob Roy?
A.   Yes sir.

Q. 6  Whose son were you?
A.   My father was Black Leach.

Q. 7   How old were you when you left that community?
A.   Well, it has been about 16 years. I was about 38 years old.

Q. 8  Did you know S. W. Leach?
A.   I did.

Q. 9   Were you related to him?
A.  Yes sir.

Q. 10   Know his wife, Mrs. Finis Leach?
A.  Yes, I knew her. I was not related to her only by being married to Uncle Sam.

Q. 11   How far was the farm on which you lived from the farm where Mr. S. W. Leach lived when he died?
A.   About two miles I guess.

Q. 12   Your farm was down toward Beaver Dam?
A.  Yes sir, on the Old Hartford and Morgantown road close to the old Brick House graveyard or what is known as the cedar field.

Q. 13   How long had you known that farm?
A.   All my life.

Q. 14   Were you on it frequently?
A.   I used to be on it quite a bit, in uncle Sam's life time.

Q. 15   Do you know about the buildings on that farm?
A.   Yes sir.

Q. 16   Tell the Court about the kind and character of t he buildings on that farm  when he died?
A.   They were in pretty bad shape.

Q. 17   What kind of dwelling house was there?
A.   A log house, weather-boarded. I don’t think it ever had any paint on it, not in my  knowing. I would not consider it very much of a house at that time.

Q. 18   What age was it?
A.   I judge it had been there a generation or two.

Q. 19  What about the other buildings?
A.   The barn was fairly good, just a small barn.

Q. 20   A frame barn?
A. Yes sir.

Q. 21   Any other buildings on the place?
A.  None to amount to anything.

Q. 22   Do you know about the timber on this farm?
A.   There was some timber on it, I remember.

Q. 23  . About how much would you say, how many acres?
A.   I would suppose around 30 or 35 acres.

Q. 24    What character of timber?
A.   Short-bodied timber, not long bodied.

Q. 25   Very large?
A.  Not large, no.

Q. 26   What was the character of the soil where this timber was growing?
A.   It was thin.

Q. 27  How about the other part of the farm?
A.   It was about worn out since I can remember.

Q. 28   How much of that farm was suitable to raise crops on or suitable for cultivation?
A.   A very small amount.

Q. 29   How many acres?
A.  I would not think over 10 or 12 acres.

Q. 30   Did Mr.  S. W. Leach farm very much?
A.   A little patch of corn is all I ever saw growing there.

Q. 31   I believe he was county assessor at one time?
A.   Yes sir.

Q. 32   Was also deputy assessor and magistrate?
A. Yes sir.

Q. 33   And did not do much farming?
A.  No sir, and he had a bunch of bees he messed with quite a bit.

Q. 34  In 1919 what was the condition of the roads in that section of the county?
A. They were quite bad.

Q. 35  Were there any state roads or rural highways then?
A. No sir.

Q. 36   Nothing but county roads?
A.  That is all and they got impassable in places in the winter time.

Q. 37   Were there any sales of land in that section in 1918 and 1919?
A.   No sir, not to amount to anything.

Q. 38   How would price of farm land at that time compare with prices of farm lands now?
A. Then they were away below what they are now.

Q. 39  What about the difference in the price of farm products then and now.
A.  They were not a fourth as high as now.

Q. 40   Do you remember when that farm was sold to J. N. Leach?
A.   Yes sir.

Q. 4l   Were you living in that community at that time?
A.   Yes sir.

Q. 42   Were you present on the day that Mrs. Leach sold the personal property, at the sale?
A. Yes sir.

Q. 43   What in your opinion was the fair, reasonable market value of that farm, surface, timber and improvements at that time?
A. Well, I think $2,000.00 was a good price at that time.

Q. 44   You mean including the timber?
A. Yes sir.

Q. 45  What was the farm reasonably worth without the timber?
A.  $800.00, maybe $1,000.00.  I would not want it at that.

Q. 46  If the purchaser were only buying Mrs. Leach’s life estate, she being 62 years of age at the time and in poor health, her life estate giving the purchaser only a right to possession and use of the farm during her life time, no right to the timber or minerals, what would you say that would have been worth?
A. It would have been worth mighty little.

Q. 47  What in your opinion would it have been worth, assuming she was 62 years of age and in poor health?
A.   I don't see how a fellow could give over $100.00 a year, the condition the place was in.

Q. 48   Do you know when the timber was cut off?
A.  I remember when it was cut off.

Q. 49   About how long after Jasper Leach bought that farm before the timber was out off of it?
A.  I don't remember just about that, but not long.

Q. 50. Do you know what they got for that timber?
A.  My understanding was they got $1,000.00.

Q. 51  Jake Leach out that timber , I believe?
A.   Yes sir.

Q. 52   Was any of that timber large enough for lumber?
A.  Some, yes sir.

Q. 53  What about the biggest portion of the timber?
A. The biggest portion was tie timber.

Cross-examination by Claude E. Smith, Attorney for plaintiffs.

Q. 1  What species or kind of timber was on that place?
A.  Principally Oak.

Q. 2   White Oak and Black Oak?
A.  Yes sir.

Q. 3   You say there were 30 or 35 acres in timber?
A.   Yes sir.

Q. 4   Have you seen that farm recently?
A. I haven’t been out that way for two or three years.

Q. 5  Do you know whether the house and barn are now gone?
A.  They were still there tow or three years ago when I was there. I don't know about them now


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