Definitions from Black's Law Dictionary: 2nd Edition and Ballentine's Law Dictionary as are available for each term in each dictionary.
  • Ballentine's Law Dictionary

    A line of descent from a common ancestor.

  • Black's Law Dictionary: 2nd Edition

    An offshoot, lateral extension or subdivision. A branch of a family stock is a group of persons, related among themselves by descent from a common ancestor, and related to the main stock by the fact that that common ancestor descends from the original founder or progenitor.
    —Branch of the sea. This term, as used at common law, included rivers in which the tide ebbed and flowed. Arnold v. Mundy, 6 N. J. Law, 86, 10 Am. Dec. 356.
    —Branch pilot. One possessing a license, commission, or certificate of competency issued by the proper authority and usually after an examination. U. S. v. Forbes, 25 Fed. Cas. 1141; Petterson v. State (Tex. Cr. App.) 58 S. W. 100; Dean v. Healy, 66 Ga. 503; State v. Follett, 33 La. Ann. 228.
    —Branch railroad. A lateral extension of a main line ; a road connected with or issuing from a main line, but not a mere incident of it and not a mere spur or side-track, not one constructed simply to facilitate the business of the chief railway, but designed to have a business of its own in, the transportation of persons and property to and from places not reached by the principal line. Akers v. Canal Co., 43 N. J. Law, 110; Biles v. Rnilroad Co., 5 Wash. 509. 32 Pac. 211; Grennan v. McGregor, 78 Cal. 258, 20 Pac. 559; Newhall v. Railroad Co.., 14 111. 274; Blanton v. Railroad Co., 86 Va. 618, 10 S. E. 925.