Andrew French (plaintiff) deeded farm property to his son, George French (defendant). In turn, George French executed a deed conveying a life estate in the use and improvement of half the property to his father. Andrew French petitioned for a writ of entry to authorize his entry upon and use of the land subject to the life estate. George French argued that the deed he had executed in conveyance of the life estate was invalid because it had been attested by only one witness in contravention of a statute declaring that no interest in land would pass by deed unless the deed were attested by two witnesses. George French further argued that the statute operated to invalidate any deed not executed in compliance with statutory requirements.