This section is from the book "Hill's Manual Of Social And Business Forms: A Guide To Correct Writing", by Thos. E. Hill. Also available from Amazon: Hill's Manual Of Social And Business Forms: The How-To-Do-Everything Book Of Victorian America.
It is of much importance, in all matters upon which may arise a difference of opinion or misunderstanding, that contracts be reduced very explicitly to writing, thereby frequently saving the parties to the contract a long and expensive law-suit.
Agreements should show that they are made for a lawful consideration, else they are void in law.
It is well to have a written agreement signed by a witness, though the witness need not know the contents of the document.
While a signature, or mark, written with a pencil, if proven by witnesses, is good in law, it is always safest to execute the contract with pen and ink.
A discovery of fraud, or misrepresentation by one party to the agreement, or changing of the date, renders the contract void.
Every agreement should state most distinctly the time within which its conditions are to be complied with.
Copies of an agreement should always be prepared in duplicate, and each party to the agreement should retain a copy.
This Agreement, made the first day of August, 18 -, between Isaac E. Hill, of Tarkio, county of Atchison, State of Missouri, of the first part, and Vardemon Blevins, of Fairfax, Mo., of the second part:
Witnesseth, that the said Isaac E. Hill, in consideration of the agreement of the party of the second part, hereinafter contained, contracts and agrees to and with the said Vardemon Blevins, that he will deliver, in good and marketable condition, at the village of Corning, Mo., during the month of September, of this year, one hundred tone of prairie hay, in the following lots, and on the following specified terms; namely, twenty-Jive tons by the seventh of September, twenty-five tons additional by the fourteenth of the month, twenty-five tons more by the twenty-first, and the entire one hundred tons to be all delivered by the thirtieth of September.
And the said Vardemon Blevins, in consideration of the prompt fulfillment of this contract, on the part of the party of the first part, contracts to and agrees with the said Isaac E. Hill, to pay for said hay Six Dollars per ton, for each ton as soon as delivered.
In case of failure of agreement by either of the parties hereto, it is hereby stipulated and agreed that the party so failing shall pay to the other One Hundred Dollars as fixed and settled damages.
In witness whereof, we have hereunto set our hands the day and year first above written.
ISAAC E. HILL, VARDEMON BLEVINS.
Articles of Agreement, made this seventh day of June in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and seventy-three, between Luther Henderson, of Sandy Hill, Washington county, State of New York, party of the first part, and William W. Stewart, of Jamaica, county of Windham, State of Vermont, party of the second part:
Witnesseth, that said party of the first part hereby covenants and agrees, that if the party of the second part shall first make the payment and perform the covenants hereinafter mentioned on his part to be made and performed, the said party of the first part will convey and assure to the party of the second part, in fee simple, clear of all incumbrances whatever, by a good and sufficient warranty deed, the following lot, piece, or parcel of ground, viz. : The west fifty-five (55) feet of the north half of lot number six (6) in block number three (3) Whitford's addition to Chicago, as recorded at Chicago, Cook county, Illinois.
And the said party of the second part hereby covenants and agrees to pay to said party of the first part the sum of One Thousand Dollars, in the manner following: Three Hundred Dollars,cash in hand paid, the receipt whereof is hereby acknowledged, and the balance in three annual payments, as follows, viz. : Two Hundred Dollars, June 7, 1874; Two Hundred Dollars, June 7, 1875; and Three Hundred Dollars, June 7, 1876; with interest at the rate of ten per centum per annum, payable on the dates above specified, annually, on the whole sum remaining from time to time unpaid, and to pay all taxes, assessments, or impositions that may be legally levied or imposed upon said lands subsequent to the year 1873. And in case of the failure of the said party of the second part to make either of the payments, or perform any of the covenants on his part hereby made and entered into, this contract shall, at the option of the party of the first part, be forfeited and determined, and the party of the second part shall forfeit all payments made by him on this contract, and such payments shall be retained by the said party of the first part, in full satisfaction and in liquidation of all damages by him sustained, and he shall have the right to re-enter and take possession of the premises aforesaid, with all the improvements and appurtenances thereon, paying said Wm. W. Stewart the appraised value of said improvements and appurtenances; said appraisement to be made by three arbitrators, one being chosen by each of the said parties, the other being chosen by the first two.
It is mutually agreed that all the covenants and agreements herein contained shall extend to and be obligatory upon the heirs, executors, administrators and assigns of the respective parties.
In witness whereof, the parties to these presents have hereunto set their hands and seals, the day and year first above written.
Signed, sealed and delivered in presence of
Hartly D. Wells.
LUTHER HENDERSON, WM. W. STEWART.
This Agreement, made this fourteenth day of April, one thousand eight hundred and seventy-one, between Thomas Babcock, of Ohio City, county of Cuyahoga, State of Ohio, party of the first part, and
Perley White, of Cleveland, county of Cuyahoga, State of Ohio, party of the second part: