NEW ORLEANS -- A ruling by a state appeals court supports Tulane University's decision to close Newcomb College, in response to a lawsuit filed by Josephine Newcomb's heirs, who said that closing the school after Hurricane Katrina violated the terms of her gift to the school.

A statement from Tulane University said that the Louisiana 4th Circuit Court of Appeal has affirmed the decision of the Civil District Court, 'ruling in Tulane's favor that Mrs. Newcomb's will created an unconditional bequest to the Administrators of Tulane Educational Fund.'

Newcomb's heirs, including her great-great-great niece, had filed suit against Tulane, saying it violated Mrs. Newcomb's intent when it closed the college for women in 2006 as part of a university restructuring after the storm. Tulane had said that the gift from Mrs. Newcomb did not require the college be kept open.

It is unclear whether the Newcomb heirs will appear the ruling.

In a statement, Tulane University said 'Today's decision by the Louisiana 4th Circuit Court of Appeal is consistent with what four courts have previously decided in this case: Mrs. Newcomb's will did not place any conditions on the funds donated by her to Tulane University.'

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