Definition – Accretion

An accretion to land is generally defined as the imperceptible increase thereto on the bank of a river by alluvial formations, occasioned by the washing up of the sand or earth, or by dereliction as when the river shrinks back below the usual watermark; and when it is by addition it should be so gradual that no one can judge how much is added each moment of time. Conkey v. Knudsen, 143 Neb. 5, 8 N.W.2d 538 (1943); Lammers v. Nissen, 4 Neb. 245 (1876); Frank v. Smith, 138 Neb. 382, 293 N.W. 329 (1940).

Webster’s New International Dictionary defines accretion as follows: “The increase or extension of the boundaries, or the acquisition, of land by the gradual or imperceptible action of natural forces, as by the washing up of sand or soil from the sea or a river, or by a gradual recession of the water from the usual watermark.” Conkey v. Knudsen, 143 Neb. 5, 8 N.W.2d 538 (1943).

Accretion is the process of gradual and imperceptible addition of solid material, called alluvion, thus extending the shoreline out by deposits made by contiguous water. Monument Farms, Inc. v. Daggett, 2 Neb. App. 988, 520 N.W.2d 556 (1994); Ziemba v. Zeller, 165 Neb. 419, 86 N.W.2d 190 (1957).