Page images



against public policy a court of equity will rescind, cuses therefor, the inethod of a plea would be to state notwithstanding the party plaintiff has participated that there is no such excuse, and because by taking istherein, if public policy would be defeated by allowing sue on such a plea and frieming an excuse the comthe instrument to stand. Id., SS 695, 695a. So long as plainant could cut off all excuses and win the case. To the contract continues executory, the maxim “in pari guard against a demurrer based on laches, in a case delicto does not apply at all. Ad. Eq. *175; Spring where long delay intervened between the iufringement Co. v. Knowlton, 103 U. S. 49. These principles open and filing of the bill, the bill ought to state the existtbe way for equitable intervention hore, and nothing ing excuses for that delay; and to guard against such appears to induce a denial of the relief sought. It is defense being started on the hearing the evidence indeed inferable from the evidence that all the stock ought to show whatever excuse the complainant can holders of the plaintiff company either expressly as interpose." See also the following authorities: Maxsented to the contract of October 5, 1883, or acquiesced

well v.

Kennedy, 8 How. 222; Lewis v. Chapman, 3 for a season therein. But it is shown in Thomas v. Beav. 133; Saunders v. Smith, 3 Mylne & C. 711; ColRailroad Co., 101 U. S. 71, 83, that a contract not ları. v. Allison, 4 id. 487; Wyeth v. Stone, 1 Story, 27/3: within the scope of the powers conferred on a corpo Root v. Railway Co., 103 U.S. 215; Curt. Pat., $ 440, in ration, and against public policy, cannot be made valid which the author says: “Where a patentee seeks an by the assent of every one of the shareholders. Nor injunction against an alleged infringer, and the eviis it a sufficient reason for refusing to interfere, that dence shows that this infringer, or others, have been some of the directors who were parties to the indefen in the habit of disregarding the exclusive right consible scheme for private speculation heretofore referred ferred upon the patentee, and this with knowledge, to were active in promoting this suit and in its prose either actual or implied, on the part of the patentee, oution. Even for them there is a locus penitentice. the court will dismiss the bill on the ground that the Spring Co. v. Knowlton, supru. They however are not complainant has been guilty of laches, or that there is the complainants. The suit is by the corporation, a want of that exclusive possession which lies at the which owes a paramount duty to the public. Its for foundation of every claim for an injunction.' These mer course was inexcusable indeed; but having re authorities, enforcing the general rule of equity juristraced its false steps, it is now in the right pathway. prudence, compel the sustaining of the demurrer. Cir. Having entered into a contract forbidden by public C't., E. D. Mo., Sept. 19, 1884. McLoughlin v. People's policy (as was said in Thomas v. Railroad Co., supra), Ry. Co. Opinion by Brewer, J. “it was the duty of the company to rescind or abandou it at the earliest moment. This it has done; but to the end that it may the better discharge its ob MINNESOTA SUPREME COURT ABSTRACT. ligation to the public, it needs the aid of a court of equity to set aside the improvident and illegal contract


RECORDwith which it is embarrassed. The railroad is unfin

MORTGAGOR REMOVING FROM STATE-LACHES ished. The work of construction has ceased. Al

TAKING POSSESSION-EFFECT OF RECORDING ACTS.though free to proceed, the defendant for many

A chattel mortgage esecuted and recorded in another months has done nothing. His inaction is doubtless

State, where the mortgagor resides and the property wise, for were this bill dismissed he could not expect

is situated, and according to the laws of that State, need a court of equity to decreo the specific performance of

not, to preserve the rights of ihe mortgagee, be filed in his construction contract; and if at law he could re

this State, upon the mortgagor, with the property in cover at all for future work it would be as upon a quina

bis possession, removing to and becoming a resident of tum meruit only. ('ir. Ct., W. 1). Pem., Aug. 13, 1884.

this State. The rule is that the validity and effect of New Castle, etc., R. Co. v. Simpson. Opinion by

contracts relating to personal property are to be deterAcheson, J.

mined by the laws of the Stato or country where they PATENT-SUIT FOR INFRINGEMENT-LACHES -- DE are made, and as a matter of comity they will, if valid MURRER.— Bill for the infringement of patent, al there, be enforced in another State or country, alleging unauthorized construction and use of patented though not executed or recorded according to the law invention by defondant for thirteen years, and mak of the laiter. And this rule has been applied in a great ing no excuse for complainant's failure to assert his number of cases to chattel mortgages, where the mortrights during that period, held, demurrable. That the gagor removes with the property into another State, general principles of equity jurisprudence control in continuing in possession of it, permissible by the law patent cases cannot be doubted. Rev. Stat., S 6:29, 59; of the former, under circumstances that, had the mortalso $ 4921, which last section contains these words: gage been executed in the latter State, by one resident “The several courts vested with jurisdiction of cases therein, would havo made it invalid as against credarising under the patent laws shall have power to grant itors or purchasers. Jones (hat. Mort., SS 260, 299– injunctions according to the course and principles of 301; (ffutt v. Flagg, 10 N. II. 46; Ferguson v. Clifford, courts of equity to prevent the violation of any rights 37 id. 86; ('obb v. Buswell, 3. Vt. 337; Jones v. Taylor, Beoured by a patent, upon such terms as the court may 30 id). 42; Taylor v. Boardman, 25 id. 581; Ballard v. deem reasonable.” Now generally speaking the laches Winter, 39 ('om. 179; Langworthy v. Little, 12 Cush. of complainant is sufficient ground for non-interfer 109; Bank r. Danforth, 11 Gray, 123; Martin F. Hill, 12 ence on the part of a court of equity. Nearly all the Barl). 6:31 ; Kanaga v. Taylor, 7 Ohio St. 134; Wilson v. life-time of this patent the complainant has remained Carson, 1:2 Md. 51; Smith r. McLean, 24 Iowa, 322; silent, by his silenco consenting to, or at least acqui- Simms v. Mckee, 25 id.311; Feurt v. Rowell, 62 Mo. 524. encing in, the acts of the defendant. To interfere now Tho court below disposed of the case mainly upon the by injunction would soem manifestly inequitable. proposition that the mortgagees were guilty of laches That this question of laohes can be raised by demurrer in not taking possession of the property within a renand that it is a good defense to a bill in equity, is

sonable time after they had the right to take possesabundantly sustained by the authorities. In Walk. sion. It stated this to be the rule: “The law requires Pat., $ 597, it is said: “The defense of laches can be a mortgagee, when default is made, to take possession made in a demurrer, or in an answer, or in argument of the property within a reasonable time thereafter in on the hearing, without any pleading to support it. order to maintain and protect his lien as against subBut a plea is not appropriate in such a defense; be sequent creditors and purchasers; and if he suffers the cause if the bill shows delay, and is silent about ex property to remain in the possession and under the

control of the mortgagor, after the expiration of such reasonable time after default, it is evidence of fraud, aud he is guilty of laches, which should not protect his rights against bona fide purchasers of the property without actual notice." This is not supported by authority. See Hudson v. Warner, 2 Har. & G. 415; Shurtleff v. Willard, 19 Pick. 202; Fuert v. Rowell, 62 Mo. 524; Steele v. Adams, 21 Ala. 531; Spraights v. Hawley, 39 N. Y. 441. (2) Where the statute gives to the filing or recording of a chattel mortgage the same effect as to subsequent purchasers or mortgagees, as the delivery of tbe property to the mortgagee, leaving the mortgagor in possession, will not while such effect continues postpone the rights of the mortgagee to those of subsequent purchasers or mortgagees. Keenun v. Slimson. Opinion by Gilfillan, J. [Decided Aug. 6, 1884.] · MUNICIPAL CORPORATION-CARE OF STREETS-NEGLIGENCE-PROXIMATE CAUSE.—A municipal corporation is not relieved of the care and responsibility for the condition of one of its streets, merely by permitting a railway company to lay out and operate its track upon and along it. Where several concurring acts or conditions of things, one of them a wrongful act or omission, produce an injury, such wrongful act or omission is to be regarded the proximate cause of the injury, if the injury be one which might reasonably be anticipated from the act or omission, and which would not have occurred without it. In McMahon v. Davidson, 12 Minn. 357 (Gil. 232) it was stated as the rule that it is immaterial how many others may have been in fault if the defendant's actor negligence was an efficient cause of the injury. Iu Griggs v. Fleckenstein, 14 Minn. 81 (Gil. 6:2), the defendaut negligently left his horses uhitched in a city street, and they ran away, came into collision with and frightened another team properly hitched, which also ran away, and came into collision with and injured plaintiff's horse. The court held that defendant s negligence in leaving his horses unhitched was the cause of the injury, saying: “The running away of the defendant's team was the efficient cause of the injury to plaintiff's horse, because it put in operation the force which was the immediate and direct cause of the injury." In Johnson v. Chicago, M. & St. P. Ry. Co., 16 N. W. Rep. 488, a fire caused by a spark from defendant's engine commenced in a pile of corn-stalks negligently left by N. wear the track, passed from the corn-stalks to his barn, from his barn to another, and from that to plaintiff's. It was held that the negligence of the defendant in allowing the sparks to escape from the engine was a proximate cause of the injury to plaiutiff. In Nelson v. (hicago, M. & St. P. Ry. ('o., 30 Minn. 174, wbich was an action for injuries caused by defendant's failure to fence its road, the rule was stated that if the injury was one which a man of ordinary experience and sagacity could foresee might prob. ably ensue from a failure to fence, then the damage would be sufficiently proximate and direct to entitle the injured party to recorer.” This was followed and applied in Maher v. Winona & St. P. R. ('0., 18 V. W. Rep. 105, in wbich it was held that the failure to fence the railroad might be the proximate cause of the injary, where the plaintiff's horses, which he was driving along the highway, were frightened by a train of cars passing, got beyond his control, got away from him, ran upon and along the track into a culvert, and one was killed and the other injured. This court sustained an instruction to the jury in the language which we have quoted from the Nelson case. ('umpbell v. City of Stillwater. Opinion by Gilfillan, ('. J. [Decided July 18, 1881. ]


not lie against a city for consequential injuries to property adjacent to a public street, caused by a change of the established grade of the street lawfully made by the public authorities, and in a proper manner (being such an act as one night rightfully do upon his own premises), even though the property had been improved with reference to the preriously established grade. The municipal charter expressly empowers the city council to establish the grade of any street, and by a vote of two-thirds of the members to change the grade of

any street after it has been established. Ses. Laws 1881, ch. 76, subc. 8, $ 2. By a long current of decisions, almost without dissent, the law has been declared to be that the owner of property adjacent to a public street is not entitled to a remedy for injuries resulting from the exercise in a proper maner of lawful authority in establishing or changing the grade of the street. British Cast Plate Manuf'rs v. Meredith, 4 T. R. 794; Boulton v. ("rowther, 2 B. & ('. 703; Smith r. Washington, 20 Hlow.135; ('allender v. Marsh, 1 Pick. 418; Skinner v. Ilartford Bridge ('o., 29 ('om. 5:23; Burritt v. New Haven, 12 id. 174; Radcliff v. Brooklyn, 4 N. Y. 195; Plum v. Morris ('anal & Banking ('0., 10 N. J. Eų. 256; O'Connor v. Pittsburgh, 18 Penn. St. 187; Green v. Borough of Reading, 9 Watts, 382; Rounds v. Mumford, 2 R. 1. 151; Pontiac v. ('arter, 32 Mich. 164; Burlington v. Gilbert, 31 lowa, 356; Roberts v. Chicago, 26 Ill. 249 ; Quincy v. Jones, 76 id. 231; IIoffman v. St. Louis, 15 Mo. 651; Wabash v. Alber, 88 Ind. 428; Shaw v. (rocker, 42 (al. 435; White v. Yazoo City, 27 Miss. 357. To the extent of denying a right of recovery for consequential injuries from an original establishment of grade this court has recognized the law to be as here declared in Lee v. ('ity of Minneapolis, 22 Minn. 13; Alden v. ('ity of Minneapolis, 24 id. 251; O'Brien v. ('ity of St. Paul, 25 id. 331-334. We have however considered that a mwicipal corporation will be liable for damages caused to private property by grading streets, when a private owner of the soil orer which the streets are laid would be liable if he were making the same inprovement upon his own land for his

uso. ()'Brien v. ('ity of St. Paul, suprae; Dyer v. City of St. Paul, 27 Min. 457; Armstrong v. City of St. Paul, 30 id. 299. But this case is obviously not within the limitation of the general principle upon which those cases rest, and is to be governed by the general rule of law above asserted. In principle there is no difference between the case of injuries resulting from an original establishment of a grade and those resulting from an authorized change of an established grade. Authorities above cited; and see Karst v. St. Paul, S. & T. F. R. ('0., 22 Mimm. 118. In both cases the principle is the same; that is, a public right acquired to which iudividual convenience and interest are subject. l'pon the acquisition of the public from the original owner of the soil of the right to use the land for the purposes of a street, whether that right is acquired by purchase as by condemnation proceedings, or by gift or estoppel, as by dedication ard acceptance, the right of the public to such use of the land as may be consistent with those purposes becomes as absolute as is the right of any owner of land to the use of it for his own purposes. Thenceforth it is the right of the public, subject to any statutory restrictions which may be imposed, to hare the land prepared and kept in fit condition for use as a street; to have it improved and changed from time to time, as the public need, and the changing circumstances attending its use shall require. That changes might be required must be presumed to have been contemplated when the land was taken and deroted to the purposes of a streer, as incident to the enjoyment of the easement which was then acquired. The individual proprietor holds his property subject to the public right. IIe necessarily takes upon him.

[ocr errors]


[ocr errors]


[ocr errors]

self the risk of the possible consequences of such for the next three years at least, from filling any juchanges in the grade of the street as may become nec dicial position. Their acts in so contributing were essary for the public convenience and safety. Raising certainly not illegal then, and to now declare it to be the grade of the street, as was done in this case, and an vffense disqualifying them from filling judicial with the consequences alleged, is not a ikin of positions would be ar ex post facto law of the worst plaintiff's property for which, under the Constitution, sort. The principle of the act is undoubtedly good, compensation must be made. The injury complained but the section referred to should be so amended that of is merely a consequence of the exercise of a legal those lawyers who contributed to the legitimate exright which the public acquired, and to which plaint. penses of the last campaign, and also of the two preiff's land became subject when the land was taken for ceding it, should not be debarred from being candia street. Whatever taking there has been was com. dates for a judicial position for the next three years to plete when the easement was first acquired. The constitutional provision is not applicable to the case. Bur The form of oath might be altered to read in the alritt v. New Flaren, and Callendar v. Marsb, supra. It ternative, to wit, that deponent has not since the pasis claimed that certain provisions of the city charter, sage of the (proposed) act or within three years last providing for ascertaining “ the amount of all dama past contributed, etc. That would obviate the diff. ges occasioned to any private property by reason of any culty. public works or structures,” should be so construed as

Yours, to sustain a right of recovery. We find no reason to

H. W. T. 80 construe the act. These terms of the act were not

NEW YORK, Jan. 27, 1885. employed for the purpose of conferring a right to com [We do not see that our correspondent “obviates pensation where none existed before, but merely with the difficulty.” For we should read “and." reference to providing a method of ascertaining the

-ED.] compensation to be paid for such taking of or injuries to property as, under the existing law, entitled the owner to compensation. As we understand the allegations of the complaint respecting injury from water VEIL BOOKS AND NEID EDITIONS. coming upon plaintiff's property, the facts are in substance that before the grade of the street was changed

RAPALJE ON COXTEMPT. the sewers and gutters carried the surface water from

A Treatise on Contempt, including Civil and Criminal Conthe premises in the vicinity of this lot to the north

tempts of Judicial Tribunals, Justices of the Peace, Legward and into the Mississippi river; but that these

islative Bodies, Municipal Boards, Committees, Notaries, gutters and sewers being filled by the raising of the

Commissioners, Referees, and other offices exercising justreet, the surface water from the territory south of

dicial and musi judicial functions, with Practice and this property is left to flow over plaintiff's land as it

Forms. By Stewart Rapalje. New York, 1884. L. K. naturally would in the absence of any artificial means

Strouse & Co. l'p. 273, xivi. of carrying it off. The city is not liable for failure to provide a means for carrying off this surface water (Lee The subject of this book is one which the active v. City of Minneapolis, Alden v. City of Minneapolis, practitioner may be called upon at ang moment for O'Brien v. City of St. Paul, supra; : Dill. Mun. C'orp. advice. At any point along the line of the progress of (3d ed.) 1039 et seq.), and after it had once made pro a case the question of “contempt" is apt to crop out. vision which accomplished that result by the gutters And now instead of having to wade through digests, and sewers of this street, upon the grade first estab and volumes of reports, with a feeling of assurance he lished, it was not liable for failure to provide new can turn to the above, and find, as the author says in means of accomplishing that end, when from the his preface, “the law as laid down in the books." change of grado the old aqueducts became useless. Would that judges would apply the same law. The Henderson v. City of Minneapolis. Opinion by Dick work is supplemented with appropriate forms and inson, J.

amply indexed. [Decided July 19, 1881.)


[ocr errors]




PE following decisions wero handed down Tues


Order of General and Special Terms reversed and proJUDGESHIP.

ceedings remitted to Special Term to appoint commisEditor of the Albany Law Journal:

sioners--In re Application of the Cniou Ferry Co., In your New York letter, published in your issue of | etc.-Judgment aflirmed — People, respondent, v. the 24th inst., is a notice of a proposed bill to prohibit Alfred F. Vedder, appellant.-Judgments affirmed contributions for political purposes from judicial ofli

with costs—In ro Will of Catherine IIarder, deceased, cers, or candidates for judicial offices. One section of

Julia E. IIoughkirk, administratrix, respondent, v. the proposed bill requires every person elected to hold tbe office of judge, before assuming said office to file

President, etc., of the Delaware and Hudson Canal in the office of the secretary of State an oath to the (0., appellant; Foster B. Moss, exr., appellant, v. effect that he has not within three years prior to the James Hasbrouck and others, respondents.-Judgtaking of such oath paid any assessment or contribu ment afirmedl, on ground that there is no competent tion for political purposes.

evidence of the execution of a will, without costs to As in this section of the State, pretty nearly all of

either parties, In re Probate of Alleged Will of Johu the members of the bar took part on one side or the

Russell, etc. - Motion to amend notice of appeal deother in the recent presidential campaign, and contributed of their funds thereto, the passage of this nie), with costs Catherine ('. Mc Donald, respondent, section in its present shape would disqualify them all v. Frederick Sutor, appellant.

The Albany Law Journal.

[ocr errors]


it now makes our criminals worse, our home righteousness would be irresistible. Russia finds this

process of forcing Nihilism in her universities highly ALBANY, FEBRUARY 14, 1885.

successful. And if life among the heathen should kill off our exiled criminals as fast as it does our

missionaries, whose average life abroad is three and CURRENT TOPICS.

one-half years, we could have the satisfaction of

knowing that though they perished on a foreign N a recent address before the Illinois State Bar

shore it is in a good cause.” This temporarily stuns

If it is sarcasm it is not without merit; if it is the following very forcible and novel sentiments

a joke, although it is rather robust, we might tolerconcerning the treatment of criminals: “They ate it; but if it is serious, we should simply answer should be sent where they can get all the barbarism

that every nation is bound in fairness to “wash its they want. This advice is so old that it seems new.

dirty linen at home.” In Job, exile to an island is a familiar idea. All nations have practiced it until recently. England started her empire in America and in Australia by

A correspondent of the Central Lau Journal writes it. We are maintaining fifty public nuisances, mon

as follows, concerning the habits of the English asteries of malignity for the more complete eradica. judges of delivering opinions seriatim: “It is an tion of virtue in the depraved than is otherwise intolerable nuisance, after one judge has exhausted possible, filled with 50,000 convicts who to our civ

the case, to have another take it up, and go over all ilization are mischievous. To Stanley's new State

the points the first has made, and add a word or on the Congo, where the conditions of sensual exist

two by way of illustration, and agree with the first. ence are easy enough for the most incompetent, they It gets worse and worse when a third and fourth go would be an invaluable help, industrial missionaries, through this same formula. We have to pay for better than missionaries, for being more nearly like

these tautological reports. Our periodicals follow the rogues among whom they would be sent, the

suit in this stupidity. They usually publish the two would better understand each other than either opinions of all the judges, which are generally as of them now understand the missionaries. We spend much alike as two peas. Life is too short to read vast sums of money and months of time and learn

all this matter." This is quite just. It has often ing in litigating the question whether a man is a

occurred to us, but it never occurred to us to say it, criminal or a lunatic. In fact, the question is im

because our hands have been full in correcting the material. Both need nearly the same treatment,

bad habits of our own judges. This particular bad viz. : : easy conditions of physical support by light habit however is peculiar to the English bench. labor, freedom as nearly as possible from all restraint, The superfluity of opinions may be endured up to and especially from the highly complex restraints

the house of lords, for there is usually some new of civilized society; plenty of play and amusement; light or turn of expression that gives something like in fact, just the conditions which asylums and pen-variety to the unnecessary performance. But when itentiaries do not supply. Especially the criminal

it comes to the house of lords there is not a single needs his wife and child, which the penitentiary alleviating characteristic, unless may be the recent takes away. When the relatives and friends of poetical quotations indulged in by Lord Fitzgerald. criminals receive letters from their convict friends

How much better it would be if one judge should in Africa advising them that they are doing far bet

pronounce the opinion, and the others should conter there than they ever could here, and would not

tent themselves with saying “ditto,” or “me too.'s return if they could, convictions of crime will be easy and crime will diminish, because the persons who now constitute the criminal class will be drawn We recently called attention to the English off and usefully employed. During our war crime mangling of Mr. Bigelow's work on Torts, by omitceased throughout the country, because the war ting all the American cases. Now a Mr. Grigsby created a demand for the criminal and made him has laid sacrilegious hands on the ark of Story's useful. Colonizations of criminals will do exactly Equity Jurisprudence, under the pretense of editing the same thing. I would like to see the treatment it. The Laur Journal says of it: “An English ediwhich we apply to missionaries and criminals exactly tion of this American legal classic will be received reversed by sending the criminals to the heathen with much interest. The first question which the and placing the missionaries under the operation of reader will ask himself is, upon what principle has that great forcing process, the penitentiary, of the editor proceeded? The work might have been course with such changes in the nature of the insti done in two ways. The text of Story might have tution as would adapt it to its new inmates, but ad been looked upon as sacred, whether it professed to hering to the principle that righteousness, like crime, be founded on English or American cases. In this is best cultivated by gathering large quantities of it view, the last edition by Story himself would have together in one spot. We should then be intensify- been printed entire, with comments by the editor ing piety at home as we now intensify crime. If it either in the form of notes or bracketed interpolawould bring out our missionaries as much better as tions, with the object of showing either that Story's

VOL. 31 - No. 7.


and un

law is the law of England at the present day or that result of an election, why may he not speak and it is not, and if not, why not. This we imagine is write as he thinks?” Our judges have usually and the ideal way of editing the book. Mr. Grigsby wisely refrained from actively participating in poliperhaps was deterred from following it by practical tics — except to get themselves nominated — but it considerations. It might have required more space would be absurd to enact that a judge shall not than was available, or might have been supposed make a political speech. unsuitable in that form for the practical English lawyer. We do not think he or his publishers ought

The family of the late Secretary Folger have preto have been so deterred, but such is the case. Another mode of editing the book would have been to

sented his legal scrap-book and common-place book

to the editor of this journal. It is an extensive re-write it, using Story where it was considered

and very curious collection, mainly consisting in convenient. This probably was considered as effac

manuscript slips, sometimes several deep, writing Story too completely. The third and worst mode of colitiny has been adopted -- namely, by and all accurately indexed. The collection was

ten without erasure or blots, in a very legible hand, omitting such part of Story as is borrowed from American cases, reproducing so much of him as is principally formed while Mr. Folger was on the

bench of our ('ourt of Appeals. IIe had alluded based on English cases, and putting on the top of

to it in correspondence with the editor, and had all the subsequent English cases and statutes.

frequently made extracts from it for this journal. The result of this compromise is mixed. We have neither an effective treatise on cquity as

The book contains two unfinished articles for this

Names ”—- of which there are now recognized by English law, nor have we a full journal, one on exposition of the views of Story." It would be much

many singular examples in the collection fairer to steal Story's work without credit than to

other on convicts carniuy deductions from their

term of sentence for good behavior. It even conmisrepresent or castrate it.

tains the last piece of blotting-paper used in the

book. It is a striking evidence of the learning, The spirit of civil service reform seems to have

research, patience and order of our lamented chief. gone mad in Virginia. Last winter the legislature The editor feels greatly distinguished by being enacted as follows: “It shall not be lawful for the made the recipient of this precious legacy, and judge of any court, the superintendent of public in- when he has done with it, and with all other struction, any superintendent of schools, the super- earthly affairs, will deliver it to our Court of intendent, manager, or any employee of any asy- Appeals for preservation among its archives. lum or State institution of learning, actively to induce or procure, either directly or indirectly, or to The New York Mail an Express, with its weekly attempt, either directly or indirectly, to induce or

edition of January 29th, sends out a supplement of procure any qualified elector to vote in any election

eight pages, containing a full reprint of the Civil for any particular candidate, or in favor of any par

Code proposed by lsr. Field. This is an opportune ticular political party, or to vote against any particular candidate or against any particular party. It publication, bringing the proposcil body of our laws shall not be lawful for any of the oflicers or em

before the laymen of the State, and giving them ployces, mentioned in the foregoing section, to par

the opportunity to see and judge for themselves. It ticipate actively in politics; and making political is the privilege of the people to say whether they speeches, or the active or official participation in

will have their laws written, or whether they will political meetings, shall be deemed to be an active have them floating vaguely in the discretion or inparticipation in politics, within the meaning of this discretion of a few judges. The obstructionists section.” A school superintendent was convicted talk about the dangers of adopting this Code beunder this act of making a political speech, and on cause it lias been hastily prepared. It has been in his appeal the Court of Appeals of Virginia has re preparation for more than a generation. Very few cently decided the law to be unconstitutional. The | but lawyers have ever seen it. Now let the people Independent very justly observes: “ an office-holder see how simple a thing the statutory enunciation of has as much right actively to participate in politics a principle may be, when it is not made to minister as any other man. He may, if he chooses, make to the interest of a chosen body of interpreters. speeches on political questions, attend political meetin and seek to influence the action of his fellow citizens in respect to candidates and parties;

NOTES OF CASES. and any law making such conduct a misdemeanor is in conflict with his funılamental rights of citizen N ship, and quite as bad as the old blue laws' of an advertising banner, twenty-four feet wide other days. If an officer may be thus restrained by and twelve feet deep, was suspended across one of a legislative statute, why may he not be equally re the streets in the defendant village. The top was strained from voting according to his sentiments? attached to a wire and ropes which were fastened If he may vote as he thinks, and thus influence the to the tops of the building fronting on the street

« PreviousContinue »