LOST PAPERS. When a paper containing an agreement between parties, a will,
and the like, has been so mislaid, that after a diligent search it cannot be
found, it is said to be lost.
2. When such a document has been lost, and it is required to prove its contents, the party must prove that he has made diligent search, and, in good faith, exhausted all sources of information accessible to him. For this purpose his own affidavit is sufficient. 1 Atk. 446; 1 Greenl. Ev. Sec. 349. On being satisfied of this, the court will allow secondary evidence to be given of its contents. See Evidence.
3. Even a will proved to be lost, may be admitted to probate, upon secondary evidence. 1 Greenl. Ev. Sec. 84, 509, 575; 2 Greenl. Ev. Sec. 668, a, 2d ed. But the fact of the loss must be proved by the clearest evidence, because it may have been destroyed by the testator animo revocandi. 8 Mete. 487; 2 Addams, 223; 6 Wend. 173; 1 Hagg. Eccl. R. 115; 3 Pick. 67; 5 B. Munroe, 58; 2 Curt. 913.