Trial Justice Ray now called his court to order, and without a
jury the case was opened.
Moor's complaint that Arb had taken from him one hundred dol¬
lars wrongfully was counteracted by Arb's plea that Moor had taken
up fifty dollars above his lien, and had lacked fifty dollars in paying
up the lien he opened for
After further evidence corroborative of the ground each side had
taken, Mog, Arb's attorney, began his argument thus: "This
case is simple, a question of veracity between a white man
and a negro. Bear in mind that the latter's testimony was inad¬
missible twenty-five years ago against a white man's. However, the
only authority, Mr Arb's book-keeper, claims it to be a just debt,
and it is but impertinence that this negro should come here and
Barr, in reply, said: "According to law, Moor owes Mr Arb
nothing. When a man opens a lien it is recorded, together with
the mortgage he gives for it, in the clerk's office. Whenever the lien
is paid, the mortgage papers are to be taken up. Now, Mr. Arb
allowed Moor to take up his mortgage of four hundred dollars, so that
leaves the debt satisfied. If Moor did take up fifty dollars over his
lien account it was illegal. The law authorizes you to levy for no
more than you have a mortgage for. So in this case the mortgage
was for four hundred dollars, and whether Moor didn't pay it or
took up over it, the law recognizes no claim Mr. Arb may have over
his cotton, because the ' mortgage has been taken up and the debt
canceled on the recorder's book.'"
Trial Justice Ray said: " Since Mr. Arb has the money in his
possession already, and since his book shows that it is owed to
him, I can't see why he should not keep it," and decided that Arb
owed Moor nothing.
Then Moor whispered to his attorney, saying : " Couldn't yon
'peal and car the case to the high court?"
" If you have the money," said Barr. " You'll have to pay the
expenses of this trial, too."
Moor replied: "All you have to do is to work for me; you
needn't think 'bout pay, for you'll git that at any time. I'll pay
you beforehand. I intend to hab my right no mind war e cost."
An appeal was taken.
When the court adjourned Moor's friends were deeper in sorrow
than they were in disappointment.