William Poppe (defendant) (landlord) was the owner of property located in Turner County, South Dakota. George Poppe (tenant) was in possession of the premises as the landlord’s tenant. In 1904, the tenant asked George F. Edson (plaintiff) to drill a well at the premises. The tenant used the well with the knowledge and consent of the landlord. On August 5, 1905, the landlord inspected the well and promised to pay Edson the reasonable value of the installation in consideration of the improvement it made to the premises. After the landlord later refused to pay, Edson brought suit for breach of contract. The landlord made an objection on grounds that the complaint did not state a cause of action. The landlord argued his promise to pay lacked consideration because the services rendered by Edson were past consideration. The circuit court overruled the objection and the landlord appealed.