Hearne v. Roane

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Hearne v. Roane, Wythe 90 (1790), was a case involving a dispute over the size of an inheritance.[1]


When Plainiff Anne Hearne married William Roane, the marriage contract stated that if Roane were to die before Hearne, Hearne would receive either twenty or one-third of the total of Roane's slaves, whichever was greater. Furthermore, the contract stated that if Roane were to die before Hearne and Hearne had no living children at the time, the slaves that were added to Roane's holdings as a result of his marriage to Hearne would be given to Hearne. The contract also stated that Hearne would get "the best riding carriage, and horses belonging to it" on Roane's death.

The Court's Decision


  1. George Wythe, Decisions of Cases in Virginia by the High Court of Chancery, (Richmond: Printed by Thomas Nicolson, 1795), 90.