61 – E.L. Kelley

1: Mr. Kelley I now hand to you the copy of a deed purporting to have been made by Thomas H. Swope to Joseph Luff, marked exhibit “148” and ask you if you know anything about the original of that deed?
I don’t know that I do, and yet possibly I may have the original of that deed in my possession. I have the original of the one from Luff to the reorganized church in which he conveys the same property, but I cannot say positively that I have or have not the original of the deed that you ask me about. I could not say from memory as to whether I have or have not the original of that deed.

2: Then it is admitted that the original of this deed is not within the possession nor under the control of the defendants, – is there any objection to that Mr. Kelley?

3: I would also ask you Mr. Kelley, with reference to the date of your deed, – if you know what the date of it is please state it?
The date?

4: Yes sir, describe it to the reporter so that he can get it down as to what property that deed conveyed?
It purports to convey lot 23 in Woodson and Maxwell’s addition in the city of Independence, lying east of Grand Avenue street,

5: Are you acquainted with the property, or the location of the property which that purports to convey?
Yes sir.

6: You are acquainted with it?
Yes sir, I think I know the piece of ground.

7: Will you please point out the piece of ground on ex- hibit “A.S.O.” if you can do so?
If I am not mistaken this is the piece.

8: Which piece is that?
The three cornered piece in here, marked in pink and marked Number 23, lying west across the alley from the property in dispute in this case.

9: Is there in fact Mr. Kelly, and alley between that lot and the property in dispute in this case?
It is so shown on the map here.

10: Well is there in fact any alley there?
I could not say of my own knowledge whether there is or not but it so appears here on the map, but whether or not there is an alley there of my own knowledge I could not say.

11: Now in addition to what I have asked you Mr. Kelly, I would inquire if you know from whom this property was bought under the deed of which I have shown you a copy, marked exhibit “I48”?
I could only state that from my connection with the bishopric at the time it was bought. That is the only way I could tell you anything about it.

12: Do you know anything about it?
Yes sir, I may say that I do,-not that I had anything to do with it as the first party, but I know what was done and how it was done. I know of what was done and how it come to be done by reason of the fact that I was counselor to the bishop at the time. (13 & 14 missing)

15: Well please state how it came about?
It was bought under a mistaken idea upon a telegram sent by Joseph Luff to Bishop Blakeslee, and the statement was made that he, the bishop, must answer at once, and it was bought before the consultation could take place with me. It was an error on the part of the bishop and we have so recognized it always, but we have performed our part of the contract nevertheless,-notwithstanding the error we have stood by our contract, and performed our part of it.

15: Well will you please state whether or not the consideration expressed in the deed is the consideration that was actually paid?
I could not say.

15: You cannot say as to that?
I cannot say from my own knowledge Colonel.

16: Can you state what the consideration for the lot in question was, that was paid by the re-organized church?
The lot cost more that that.

17: Is that what the lot cost the church?
It cost more than that, but I don’t know just what it did cost. That is all that I know with reference to what was paid for it of my own knowledge.

18: If it cost more than that, – I will ask you if it cost as much as three thousand seven hundred and fifty dollars?
I could not say for it was not bought under my jurisdiction or action, or with my consent or by my knowledge, and I have never examined the records to see. The records that I have in my possession in Iowa would show all about it, – they would show just what was paid for it by running all through them, but I have never run through them to see what it is, and therefore I can’t state the amount that was paid for it.

19: Do you or do you not claim it as a part of the temple lot?
We claim that property is properly the property of the church.

20: Do you or do you not claim it as part of the temple lot?
We claim that it properly belongs to the church. That is our claim, that it is properly the property of the church, but it is no part of the property in controversy in this suit.

21: Do you claim though that it is a part of the temple property, – a part of the original temple property or lot?
The church has made no claim with reference to that that I am aware of. If the church has ever made a claim with reference to that I am not acquainted with it.

22: Then it is not claimed as a part of the original temple lot?
I cannot say whether it has or not, for there is no declaration on record on that question that I know anything about. Thee was been no declaration made upon that subject by the body that I know anything of. I will say this, however, that it might be so claimed as a part of the original temple lot and again it might not, and the church to my knowledge has never made any declaration in reference to it that I am aware of.

23: You claim it, don’t you?
Yes sir, we claim the property however, as church property, – that is the church does claim it as church property which they have bought and paid for with their money. Now you can take that as a claim to it as a part of the temple property if you wish to do so, for I only state what I know about it.

24: Has there not been as much claim made by the church for that lot as for the other lot?
I think I can answer that definitely in the negative, for the reason that all the claim that has been made to either of them has been through myself, I mad claim to the other personally myself as the attorney and agent for the bishop of the church, and that was before I was the bishop. I made the claim for these other lots, that is, the lots in controversy in this suit, and I made the claim under the direction of the church.

25: Was, or was not the claim to lot twenty three, the same as the claim to the other lots?
What do you mean?

26: I mean was the claim to that lot the same as the claim to the other lots?
The original title do you mean?

27: Yes sir? Have you not the same claim to the title to lot twenty three under what you claim as the original title?
Yes sir.

28: Yes sir, – you have the same claim to it as to the others?
Yes sir, and we purchased it and paid for it to avoid litigation, and I will say right here that I would have been willing and are now, to remunerate these defendants at any time, and have so stated to them, for any reasonable amount, for what they expended, and we were willing to do that, not because we did not think we had the title and right to it, but for the purpose of effecting a peacable settlement. We not only have tendered but stand ready not to do so, and have all the time stood ready to compensate them, – to do justice to these other parties and pay them back their money expended on account for it for taxes, purchase money or anything else.