APPELLATE COURT OF ILLINOIS, THIRD DISTRICT
K. ROWLAND, HORTENSE PFAFFMAN, WILLIAM PFAFFMAN AND ELLEN
544 N.E.2d 5, 187 Ill. App. 3d 144, 135 Ill. Dec. 648 1989.IL.1189
Appeal from the Circuit Court of LaSalle County, No. 87-CH-59, Honorable Thomas Flood Presiding Judge.
HONORABLE JAMES D. HEIPLE, Justice, HONORABLE ALBERT SCOTT, Justice, HONORABLE TOBIAS BARRY, Justice
DECISION OF THE COURT DELIVERED BY THE HONORABLE JUDGE HEIPLE
The plaintiffs, Daryle Rowland and Sandra Rowland, brought a quiet title action against the defendant, Shoreline Boat & Ski Club, to determine the northern boundary of lots 1, 2, and 3 in block 2 of Greens Addition to the City of Ottawa, Illinois. See attached plat. The plaintiffs are the installment land contract purchasers of the three lots in question and the defendant is the record title holder to real estate situated to the east of the plaintiffs property. The defendant additionally contends that he holds title to a section of property which lies to the north of lots 1, 2, and 3, which is adjacent to the Fox River. Subsequent to the commencement of the case, the record title holders and contract sellers of lots 1, 2, and 3, Hortense Pfaffman, William Pfaffman, and Ellen Rosenzweig, petitioned to intervene in the proceedings which the trial court allowed. For purposes of this appeal, the interests of the plaintiffs and intervenors are identical. Thereafter, the intervenors filed a motion for summary judgment. The trial court, relying on the original plat of the intervenors' property, granted summary judgment finding that the northern boundary of lots 1, 2, and 3 was the thread of the stream of the Fox River. Since the trial court record is void of any evidence showing a contrary intent on the part of the original grantor of the subject premises, we affirm.
The original plat of Green's Addition to the City of Ottawa was drawn by G.G. Bullock in 1835 and was recorded in LaSalle County. The Bullock plat, which is included in the text of this opinion, shows lots 1, 2, and 3 in block 2 abutting the Fox River. Notably, the length of the end lots on each block bordering the Fox River contains a "" symbol, which indicates no limit to the length of the lots as they extend to the river. At the time the Bullock plat was completed, title to all of the real estate presently owned by the intervenors and the defendant was held by Henry Green.
The intervenors trace title back to Henry Green in 1834. Through various conveyances in about 1847, the lands now owned by all parties, except for lot 2, was owned by William Cushman. Lot 2 had previously been conveyed by Henry Green to Jeremiah Price and was described in the deed as a "water lot." Eventually, lots 1, 2, and 3 were conveyed to Oliver Gray in 1854. The three lots were then reconveyed several times, including the last conveyance to George and Sarah Brooks. George died in 1950 and Sarah died in 1980. Sarah's heirs, the intervenors, then sold the lots to the plaintiffs.
The defendant traces title back to William Cushman, who conveyed property to the Ottawa Manufacturing Company in 1867, which was described in the following manner:
"that part SE 1/4 or part NW 1/4 of said Sec. Sec. 12, T. 33 N., R. 3E. of 3rd P.M., south of said canal [Illinois & Michigan Canal] and north of Blocks 1 and 2 and Grafton Street in Green's Addition to Ottawa containing 8.52 acres . . ." (Emphasis added.)
Until 1939, each succeeding instrument and conveyance in the defendant's chain of title used essentially the same description. A metes and bounds survey. which was not recorded, was then included in a deed from the National Fireproofing Corporation to Alexander and Katherine ...