In 1887 one Evans deeded to Mattie Woodbridge a lot described in the deed as lot 31, believing that the lot described was lot 29. Mattie took possession of lot 29, and held it until October 7, 1913, when she deeded it by the same description as in the original deed to one Casto, an intermediary, who then deeded it to William, Mattie's husband. Husband and wife continued in possession of lot 29 until her death in 1919. Lot 31, the lot described in the deed of 1887, continued in the possession of Evans and his successors until 1905, when it was deeded to Mattie. She then took possession and continued to hold and possess lot 31 until 1919. When Mattie died, William took a life estate in all her realty, remainder to Mattie's heirs. The misdescription in the deeds was first discovered when Mattie's heirs brought suit after William's death in 1939 for the partition of the real estate of which Mattie had died seised. Prayer of the present suit was that William Woodbridge be declared to be the true owner of lot 29, and that, if necessary for the purpose, the deeds from Mattie Woodbridge to Casto, and from Casto to William Woodbridge be reformed to effectuate the true intentions of the parties to the deeds. Held, under the law as it existed on October 7, 1913, equity will not reform a deed made by a married woman to cover land it was intended to include but failed to so include by reason of mutual mistake of fact. Stealey v. Lyons, (W. Va. 1946) 37 S.E. (2d) 569.
Eugene H. Lattin,
REFORMATION OF INSTRUMENTS-MISTAKE-DEED OF MARRIED WOMAN,
Mich. L. Rev.
Available at: https://repository.law.umich.edu/mlr/vol45/iss7/13