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See COMBINATIONS IN RESTRAINT OF TRADE.
1. Commerce clause-Unconstitutionality of sections 2317, 2318, Code of
The imposition, by a state statute, upon the initial or any connecting carrier,
of the duty of tracing the freight and informing the shipper, in writing,
when, where, how and by which carrier the freight was lost, damaged or
destroyed, and of giving the names of the parties and their official
position, if any, by whom the truth of the facts set out in the informa-
tion can be established, is, when applied to interstate commerce, a
violation of the commerce clause of the Federal Constitution; and
$$ 2317, 2318 of the Code of Georgia of 1895, imposing such a duty
on common carriers is void as to shipments made from points in Georgia
to other States (Richmond & Alleghany R. R. Co. v. Tobacco Company,
169 U. S. 311 distinguished). Central of Georgia Ry. Co. v. Murphey,
See Cases EXPLAINED, 2;
2. Contracts, impairment of-Validity of chapter 578, Laws of Massachu-
setts of 1898.
Chapter 578, Laws of Massachusetts of 1898, providing for taxation of
street railway companies is not void, as violating the impairment of
obligation clause of the Federal Constitution, so far as this case is con-
cerned, because it relieved a railroad company from the obligation to
pave and repair streets under the terms and conditions of certain
municipal ordinances which the company had duly accepted. Wor-
cester v. Street Railway Co., 539.
3. Due process of law-Failure of taxpayer to avail himself of opportunity
to test validity of tax.
If the taxpayer be given an opportunity to test the validity of a tax at any
time before it is made final, either before a board having quasi judicial
character, or a tribunal provided by the State for that purpose, due
process is not denied, and if he does not avail himself of the opportunity
to present his defense to such board or tribunal, it is not for this court
to determine whether such defense is valid. Hodge v. Muscaline
4. Due process of law—Validity of section 5007, Iowa Code.
Section 5007, Iowa Code, imposing a tax against every person and upon the
real property and the owner thereof whereon cigarettes are sold does
not give a license to sell cigarettes, nor is it invalid as depriving the
owner of the property of his property without due process of law,
because it does not provide for giving him notice of the tax, $$ 2441,
2442, Iowa Code, providing for review with power to remit by the
board of supervisors. 1b.
See CORPORATIONS, 2;
5. Ex post facto laws—Alteration of state criminal statute subsequent to com-
mission of crime, held not within prohibition.
By chapter 99, March 9, 1903, Laws of North Dakota, the statutes in force
when plaintiff in error committed the crime for which he was tried, and
when the verdict of guilty was pronounced were altered to the follow-
ing effect: Close confinement in the penitentiary for not less than six
or more than nine months after judgment and before execution was
substituted for confinement in the county jail for not less than three
nor more than six months after judgment and before execution, and
hanging within an inclosure at the penitentiary by the warden or his
deputy was substituted for hanging by the sheriff in the yard of the
jail of the county in which the conviction occurred. Held that the
changes looked at in the light of reason and common sense are to be
taken as favorable to the plaintiff in error, and that a statute which
mitigates the rigor of the law in force at the time the crime was com-
mitted cannot be regarded as ex post facto with reference to that crime.
Held that close confinement does not necessarily mean solitary confine-
ment and the difference in phraseology between close confinement and
confinement is immaterial, each only meaning such custody as will
insure the production of the criminal at the time set for execution.
Held that the place of punishment by death within the limits of the
States is not of practical consequence to the criminal. Rooney v.
North Dakota, 319.
6. Equal protection of laws not denied by state taxation of retail dealers and
not of others doing an interstate business.
A classification in a state taxation statute in which a distinction is made
between retail and wholesale dealers is not unreasonable and § 5007,
Iowa Code, imposing a tax on cigarette dealers is not invalid as deny-
ing equal protection of the laws to retail dealers, because it does not
apply to jobbers and wholesalers doing an interstate business with
customers outside of the State. Cook v. Marshall County, 261.
7. Equal protection of laws-State taxation of franchise of corporation at
different rates from tangible property.
A railroad company in Kentucky claimed as its only ground of Federal
jurisdiction in an action in the Circuit Court of the United States against
members of the state board of valuation and assessment that under the
tax laws of the State it was deprived of equal protection of the laws
contrary to the Fourteenth Amendment, because while the law of the
State required all property to be taxed at its fair cash value there
was a uniform and general undervaluation of other property but the
company's property was taxed at its full value. There was conflicting
testimony as to the valuations, most of the members of the board
testifying that they tried in good faith to reach fair cash values. Held,
that the court will not intervene merely on the ground of a mistake
in judgment on the part of the officer to whom the duty of assessment
was entrusted by the law. It is not beyond the power of a State, so
far as the Federal Constitution is concerned, to tax the franchise of a
corporation at a different rate from the tangible property in the State.
Coulter v. Louisville & Nashville R. R. Co., 599.
8. Fourteenth Amendment—Validity of Kansas Anti-Trust Act.
The act of the legislature of Kansas of March 8, 1897, defining and pro-
hibiting trusts, is not in conflict with the Fourteenth Amendment to
the Federal Constitution as to a person convicted thereunder of com-
bining with others to pool and fix the price, divide the net earnings
and prevent competition in the purchase and sale of grain. Smiley
v. Kansas, 447.
Judiciary clauses. See ACTION.
States. See STATES, 1.
OF PLEADING. See Pleading.
OF POLICY OF INSURANCE. See Insurance.
OF STATUTES. See Statutes, A.
OF WILLS. See Wills.
1. Effect of words “more or less” in contract to furnish goods.
In engagements to furnish goods to a certain amount the quantity specified
governs. Words like "about” and “more or less” are only for the
purpose of providing against accidental and not material variations.
Under the contract in this case for delivery of “about” 5,000 tons of coal
the United States cannot refuse to accept more than 4,634 tons but is
liable for the difference in value on 366 tons tendered and acceptance
refused. Moore v. United States, 157.
2. Custom and usage affecting-Demurrage.
Usage may be resorted to in order to make definite what is uncertain, clear
up what is doubtful, or annex incidents, but not to vary or contradict
the terms of a contract. Under contracts between a San Francisco
coal dealer and the United States for the delivery of coal at Honolulu
"at wharf” or “on wharf as customary," the customs referred to held
to be those of Honolulu and not of San Francisco, and that the United
States, in the absence of any provision to the contrary, could not be
held liable for the demurrage paid by the shipper to the owners of
vessels carrying the coal for delay in discharging their cargoes on
account of the crowded condition of the harbor. Ib.
3. Construction of contract by United States for use of patented process-
Denial, by United States, of validity of patent not available defense in
The United States made a contract with the steel company for the use of
a process described as patented. The contract provided that in case
it should at any time be judicially decided “that the company was
not legally entitled under the patent to the process and the product
the payment of royalties should cease. In a suit by the company for
royalties the United States attempted to deny the validity of the
patent while admitting there was no outstanding decision against it.
Held, that this defense was not open. Held further, that under the
circumstances of this case, the contract, properly construed, extended
to the process actually used even if it varied somewhat from that
described in the patent. United States v. Harvey Steel Co., 310.
See CONSTITUTIONAL LAW, 2; Mails;
INTERSTATE COMMERCE, 1; Wills, 3.
See BANKRUPTCY, 5;
1. Right of creating power to impose regulations concerning ownership of stock.
The sovereign that creates a corporation has the incidental right to impose
reasonable regulations concerning the ownership of stock therein and
it is not an unreasonable regulation to establish the situs of stock for
purposes of taxation, at the principal office of the corporation whether
owned by residents or non-residents, and to compel the corporation to
pay the tax for the stockholders giving it a right of recovery therefor
against the stockholders and a lien on the stock. Corry v. Mayor and
Council of Baltimore, 466.
2. Validity of regulation establishing situs of stock for purposes of taxation.
Where valid according to the laws of the State such a regulation does not
deprive the stockholder of his property without due process of law
either because it is an exercise of the taxing power of the State over
persons and things not within its jurisdiction, or because notice of the
assessment is not given to each stockholder, provided notice is given
to the corporation and the statute either in terms, or as construed by
the state court, constitutes the corporation the agent of the stockholders
to receive notice and to represent them in proceedings for the correc-
tion of the assessment. Ib.
3. Provisions of constitution and general laws of State as part of charter.
While the liability of non-resident stockholders for taxes on his stock may
not be expressed in the charter of the company if it existed in the gen-
eral laws of the State at the time of the creation of the corporation or
the extension of its charter, and the constitution of the State also
contained at such times the reserved right to alter, amend and repeal,
those provisions of the constitution and general laws of the State are
as much a part of the charter as if expressly embodied therein. Ib.
See CONSTITUTIONAL LAW, 7; PROCESS;
JURISDICTION, B 2;
Public LANDS, 7;
MUNICIPAL CORPORATIONS; TAXATION, 8.
See AUTOMATIC COUPLERS.
1. Federal Circuit Court as court of the State in which it sits—Controlling
force of state law.
In the exercise of the jurisdiction conferred upon it of controversies between
citizens of different States, a Circuit Court of the United States is for
every practical purpose a court of the State in which it sits and will en-
force the rights of the parties according to the law of that State taking
care, as a state court must, not to infringe any right secured by the
Constitution and the laws of the United States. And in a case of
condemnation it would proceed under the sanction of, and enforce,
the state law so far as it was not unconstitutional. Traction Company
v. Mining Company, 239.
2. Rule as to interference by Federal court with State's administration of its
Where the only constitutional ground on which the complainant can come
into the Circuit Court obviously fails the court should be very cautious
in interfering with the State's administration of its taxes upon other
considerations which would not have given it jurisdiction. Coulter
v. Louisville & Nashville R. R. Co., 599.