Weyler v. Gibson, 110 Md. 636 (1909)

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Plat showing overlay of Great Constitution Street onto Gibson's property

Plat showing overlay of Great Constitution Street onto Gibson's property, from BALTIMORE CITY SUPERIOR COURT (Civil Papers), n.d., Gibson v. Weyler, MSA SA 46, MSA T 583-29, MSA SC 2221-24-3-2.

Attorneys: For the state: Attorney General Isaac Lobe Straus, William S. Bryan.For the Plaintiffs:  Frederick Fletcher and Randolph Barton, Jr.
Issue: Would it deprive a landowner of property without due process if he could not sue State officials for taking possession of his land to expand the Maryland Penitentiary?
Summary: The plaintiffs, Frank T. Gibson et al, sued John F. Weyler, the Warden of the Maryland Penitentiary, to recover property that now held a new section of the prison.  The Court held that, since the state and state prison could not be sued, Gibson was entitled to bring suit against the Warden as the state official occupying the disputed premises.  The Court invoked the U.S. Constitution to forbid depriving a landowner of property without due process of law, and the Maryland Constitution to prohibit the "passing of any law authorizing private property to be taken for public use, without just compensation as agreed between the parties."

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