Property sold in 1950 by Sheriff's Deed--Ward County Texas Mineral Rights in Question

Hello and thank all of you who give their time and experience to help others on this site. I am completely new to all of this. About 18 months ago I was contacted by an oil company wanting to lease some minerals. This was the first I had heard of any possible mineral rights so I started looking into it and have an overwhelming amount of information, some colorful family history, and unfortunately more questions than answers. I've been gathering information and working thru all of this new information with the knowledge that I will need to hire professional help soon but hoping that someone on here can answer a couple of questions that will eliminate or include which properties to investigate further.

1. There was a property sold at court ordered auction and conveyed by Sheriff's Deed in the early 1950's. It makes no mention of mineral rights in the order. The sale satisfied a portion of the judgment and five years later the judgment was satisfied and a release of judgment was filed. Question: Can a Sheriff's Deed convey mineral rights?

2. The leasing company only wants to lease 10 mineral acres of a 20 acre tract. Can they do that?

3. In the first line of heirship there were 7 children one never married or had children. The second line there were 4 children, one married but was killed in WWII with no children. Are those children included in the calculation when dividing net mineral acres?

4. I found a deed that just said "Deed" on the top between my grandmother and a well known wildcatter. It consisted of one sentence--"For a valuable consideration the recipt of which is hereby acknowledged, I (her name) do hereby grant and convey to (wildcatter) my undivided interest in (property described here) of Ward County Texas". Legal mineral deed or not?

5. Later that same year my grandmother signed a power of attorney on same property granting permission to another party to act on her behalf. After that I can find nothing connecting her to the property. Should I continue looking into the possibility that she still owned those mineral rights?

Any help or direction is so greatly appreciated. Again thank you all for what you do!

Best Regards,


It is not possible to answer your questions without knowing who the parties were, the property description and its history. Sheriff's deed conveys the property rights owned by the debtor. Depends on who debtor was and exactly what net interest was owned by debtor. The leasing company can only lease your net mineral interest. If you own 1/2 of 20 acres, then you own 10 net mineral acres. Also, any company can offer to lease all or only a part of what you own. Cannot answer re heirship without knowing who had probated wills and who died intestate,, order in which they died (parent owner before or after child), and other family information to follow requirements of Texas inheritance laws if your grandmother died intestate. The deed likely conveyed her interest at that time, but again you need to know facts and circumstances Was this deed recorded in deed records? What kind of interest did she actually own or not at that time? Did unnamed wildcatter deed any interest back to her in exchange? Did she acquire interest from another owner before the power of attorney? Were any other deeds or documents into or out of your grandmother? What happened to the landman and why has he or the oil company not pursued you for a lease? Or other family members?

OK, fair enough. I wasn't sure to what extent I should divulge personal details on here and tried to ask questions that could be answered in general terms.

Regarding the leasing company--I do not own half of the net mineral rights. What I am trying to say is that the legal description of the property is 20 acres and they only want to lease 10 of those acres. My net mineral acres are fractional; one third of one fourth of one seventh. No one in my line of heirship had a will nor even knowledge of these mineral rights. The leasing company landman was the one that made me aware that I had mineral rights in Ward County. And yes, they have since entered into leases with other family members but have yet to send me a corrected copy of the lease. There have been other leases over the years on this tract of land, but we knew anything about them until now.

In my direct line of heirship there were no wills. My grandmother died nearly a pauper. The original land grants were issued to my great great grandmother. She had 7 children, one of which never married, all survived her. My great grandfather was one of them. He had 4 children, one of them was killed in WWII, the other 3 survived him. My grandmother was one them. She had 3 children that survived her. My father was her child. I am his sole survivor.

The deed I was referring to is a deed filed in the deed records between her and Chapman Ford regarding her undivided interest in Section 193. A few months later, she signed a Power of Attorney to Clyde Royal Guyer on the same. I have found no other deeds to or from my grandmother, but there were several leases and easements found prior to the deed and poa.

The property sold by sheriff's deed is a different tract than the two mentioned above--it was deeded to my grandparents from my great grandparents. It was subsequently sold by Sheriff's Deed to satisfy a judgment. I had been told that minerals could not be conveyed thru seizure nor quit claim. Is that generally correct or have I been misinformed?

Again, thank you for the response. I do appreciate your time. If I need to be more specific I would be glad to, I just didn't want to bog anyone down with extraneous details.