Page images

RECORDING ACT — ASSIGNMENT OF MORTGAGE — UN- judgment operates as an estoppel as to that question in AUTHORIZED DISCHARGE BY ASSIGNOR AFTER ASSIGN- any subsequent suit between the same parties, whether MENT CONTENTS OF ASSIGNMENT AND RECORD the second suit be upon the same or some other cause ESTOPPEL-SILENCE OF ASSIGNEE AFTER KNOWLEDGE of action. Hopkins v. Lee, 6 Wheat. 109; Campbell v. OF UNAUTHORIZED DISCHARGE. - (1) Decker, the Cross, 39 Ind. 155-158; Bank of the U. S. v. Beverly, 1 owner of land, mortgaged the same to Vaughn; How. 134, 135; Davis v. Brown, 94 U. S. 4:23. So, when Vaughn assigned the mortgage to Viele. Both the an issue is made in a case and decided, whether with mortgage and assignment were recorded. Thereafter or without trial, the judgment is conclusive between Vaughn, without authority, discharged this mortgage. the same parties in any subsequent action for the same Ludlum, who acquired title to the land from Decker, cause, and as to all questions which were or might have knowing that the discharge was without right, exe- been raised upon the first trial. Stockton v. Ford, 18 cuted a mortgage to Hubbard, who had like knowledge. How. 418; Mallony v. Horan, 49 N. Y. 111. But Hubbard assigned this mortgage to Judson. Held, that where a suit is tried and determined between parties, the discharge of the first mortgage was invalid and the mere fact that in that suit a question might have that mortgage was prior to the second. The record of been raised, tried, and determined, does not prevent an assignment of a mortgage is not constructive notice the raising of such question in a suit upon a different to those claiming under the mortgagor but is to those cause of action. Cromwell v. County of Sac, 94 U. S. claiming under the mortgagee. Campbell v. Vedder, 3 356; Davis v. Brown, id. 423-428; Russell v. Rau, id. Keyes, 174; Gillig v. Maas, 28 N. Y. 199; Purdy v. 602; Nims v. Vaughn, 40 Mich. 356-360; Jacobson v. Huntington, 42 id. 334; Green y. Warnick, 64 id. 220. Miller, 41 id. 90-92. In this case A began a suit in But a recorded assignment is notice that the assignor Iowa against B, to obtain bis possession and quiet bis has no right to discharge the mortgage. Belden v. title to certain lands standing in A's name. Pending Meeker, 47 N. Y. 308; Vanderkemp v. Shelton, 11 this suit A conveyed a portion of the lands to C, who Paige, 29. The record of the assignment is notice to intervened as co-plaintiff, and asked that this portion others than those acquiring rights in the mortgage might be set off to her. The case was tried and subitself. It shows to all title out of the assignor and in- mitted. Before decision A was adjudicated a bankcapacity to discharge. An assignment which contains rupt, and his assignee was substituted as plaintiff, and the name of the mortgagor and of the assignor, and the lands still standing in A's name were set off to his the date of the mortgage, and a covenant as to the assignee, but no question was raised as to the validity amount due, is sufficiently certain when there is no of the conveyance from A to C. Subsequently A's other mortgage to the assiguor bearing the same date. assignee filed a bill against C to have the conveyance There need not be a description of the lands to make set aside as a fraud upon A's creditors. IIeld, that the it the duty of the clerk to record. It is not the duty | proceedings in Iowa were not an estoppel. District, E. of the clerk to note the record of an assignment in the D. Michigan, June 14, 1880. Radford v. Folsom. Opinmargin of a mortgage. Moore v. Stevens, 50 Barb. 442, ion by Brown, D, J. was not rightly decided. Judson got no greater rights

PATENT– INVENTION IN FORM OF A BOOK - MUNICIthan Hubbard, by the assignment. The doctrine is

PAL CORPORATION LIABLE FOR INFRINGEMENT. — (1) A fully established that the assignee of a mortgage takes

bond and coupon register, in the form of a book, with not only subject to the equities existing between the

a page or pages spaced for each bond and its coupons original parties, but also subject to the latent equities

of any series of coupon bonds, and with the spaces which exist in favor of third persons against the mort

numbered and designated to show what bonds and gagor. Bush v.,Lathrop, 22 N. Y. 535; Schaeffer v.

coupons they are for, while any of them are outstandReilly, 50 id. 61; Trustees of Union College v. Wheeler,

ing, and for receiving them for safe-keeping as vouch61 id 88; Green v. Warnick, 64 id. 220. In this case

ers, or memoranda, when any of them are taken up or Judge Earl states the rule with accuracy in the terse

paid, held to be a legal subject for a patent. It is not phrase of Lord Thurlow in Davis v. Austin, 1 Ves. 247,

a proper subject for copyright, as although the plan is that “a purchaser of a chose in action must abide by

the same for registers for different bonds of a series, the case of the person from whom he buys." The case

and for different series of bonds, the registers are not was not affected by the fact that the mortgage given to

copies of one another, and the right to multiply copies Hubbard was without consideration and never had

would afford no protection at all. A copyright is a inception until its assignment to Judson, who was a

right to copy merely, as the word imports, and covers purchaser. (2) Viele knew of the discharge of Vaughn

only the multiplication of copies. Perris v. Hexamer, but took no steps to correct the record or to foreclose

99 U. S. 674; Baker v. Selden, S. C. U. S., Oct. 7, 1879, his mortgage. Held, that he was not estopped from

20 Alb. L. J. 168. There is no difference because the asser: ing his mortgage against Judson. In the case

contrivance is in the form of a book, although books of Cornish v. Abington, 4 Hurl. & Norm. 550, which

are commonly copyrighted. Hawes v. Washburn, 5 0. was followed by the court below, the sileuice of one

G. 491. (2) A city is liable in its corporate capacity for party, knowing facts, operated as a fraud and actually,

the infringement of a patent. Circuit, S. D. New itself, misled the other party. In this case all the facts

York, June 15, 1880. Munson v. Mayor of New York, was upon the record and Judson was not misled by Opinion by Wheeler, D. J. the silence of Viele. A proper search of the record

PATENT LICENSE — BREACH OF COVENANT DOES NOT would have shown the invalidity of the assignment. Judgment of General and Special Term reversed and

FORFEIT. - A breach of covenant by the licensee does new trial ordered. Bryan, appellant, v. Judson. Opin

not per se work a forfeiture of a patent license. A ion by Finch, J.

few patent cases beginning with Brooks v. Stolley, 3 [Decided Sept. 21, 1880.]

McLean, 523, hold otherwise. But Hartell v. Tilghman, 99 U. S. 547, overrules these. Until put an end

to in a proper way the contract still exists. It cannot UNITED STATES CIRCUIT AND DISTRICT be treated as ended, as a legal consequence of a failure COURT ABSTRACT.*

to pay royalties. To this effect are the authorities,

even before the case of Hartell v. Tilghman. See WilFORMER ADJUDICATION - WHAT DOES AND WHAT

son v. Sandford, 10 How. 99; Hartshorn v. Day, 19 id. DOES NOT CONSTITUTE – ESTOPPEL. - Where a question 211; Goodyear v. Union R. Co., 4 Blatchf. 63; Blanchis distinctly put in issue, and tried and decided, the

ard v. Sprague, 1 Cliff. 288; Merserole v. Union Paper

Collar Co., 6 Blatchf. 356-7. Circuit, Massachusetts, * Appearing in 3d Federal Reporter.

July 24, 1880. White v. Lee. Opinion by Lowell, C. J. PENNSYLVANIA SUPREME COURT AB- under him, impress it with any character he should STRACT.

see proper. There is no particular sanctity in the natu

ral bed of a stream, which is perpetually changing its LUNATIC - DEED OF, WHEN AVOIDED -- RATIFICA

course from accidental causes." And in speaking of TION — WHEN CONTRACT IIELD VALID. — It is a general the rule, that water shall flow ubi currere solebat et rule that a grantor in a deed may avoid his conveyance consuevit, he says it applies rather to the duty of reby proof that he was non compos mentis at the time of turving it than to the channel through which it flows. its execution. Bensell v. Chancellor, 5 Whart. 371; 2 And so in Sutclife v. Booth, 32 L. J. Q. B. 136, it was Kent's Com. 451; Gibson v. Loper, 6 Gray, 279. Like held per Wightman, J., that a water-course, though the deed of an infant, a lunatis's deed may be ratified artificial, may have been originally made under such and confirmed. Where there is no evidence of ratifi- circumstances, and have been so used as to give all the cation after restoration to reason, it is impossible, upon rights that the riparian proprietors would have had legal principles, that the estate passed to the grantee

had it been a natural stream. Of like import is the in the deed. An insane person is incapable of making case of Nuttall v. Bracewell, L. R., 2 Exchq. 1, in a valid deed for he wants the consenting mind. In

which the chancellor says: "I see no reason why the Moulton v. Camroux, 2 Exch. 487, an action to recover law applicable to ordinary running streams should not money paid for annuities, it was held that when a per- be applicable to such a stream as this, for it is a natu: son of apparently sound mind, and not known to be ral flow or stream of water, though flowing in an artiotherwise, enters into a contract for the purchase of ficial channel.” So, also, on a similar footing he puts property which is fair and bona fide, and which is exe- the case where two adjoining riparian owners should cuted and completed, and said property has been paid by agreement so alter or divert a stream that it shall for and enjoyed, and cannot be restored so as to put run in two channels instead of one. In such case he the parties in statu quo, such contract cannot after- holds that a grantor of land on the new stream would ward be set aside, either by the alleged lunatic or those have all the rights of a riparian owner. See, also, who represent him. A like doctrine prevailed in Beals Stockport Waterworks Co. v. Potter, 32 L. J. Q. B. v. Lee, 10 Barr, 56. The decision in Lancaster Nat. 136; City of Reading v. Althouse. Opinion by GorBank v. Moore, 28 P. F. S. 407, rests on the same prin- don, J. ciple - there was neither fraud nor knowledge of the [Decided March 22, 1880.) insanity. Without inconsistency, in Moore v. Hershey, 36 Leg. Int. 412, it was ruled that it is competent in an MASSACHUSETTS SUPREME JUDICIAL action by an indorser of a note made by a lunatic, for

COURT ABSTRACT. the lunatic to defend, either by showing that the indorser had knowledge of the lunacy, or that the note

JULY, 1880. was originally obtained fraudulently, or without proper CONFLICT OF LAW - JURISDICTION AS TO CLAIMS FOR consideration. Paxson, J., said: “I know of no case

MONEYS STOLEN FROM MAJLS AND RECOVERED- TRUST in which it has been held that a lunatic, when sued

DEED OF PROPERTY STOLEN. - Plaintiff executed a upon his contract, may not show want of considera

deed to defendant, Burt, who was postmaster at Bostion." After speaking of the rule which had been

ton, conveying certain real and personal property in urged in favor of the plaintiff, he adds: “We place trust, to apply the proceeds to pay all claims growing our ruling upon the broad ground that the principle of

out of money and property stolen by the plaintiff from commercial law above referred to does not apply to the

letters in the Boston post-office, and return any balcase of commercial paper made by a madman." In

ance remaining to the grantor. It appeared that all Elliott v. Ince, TM De G. M. & G. 475 (487), it is said that

the property was the proceeds of money aud property Moulton v. Camroux was called a decision of neces

stolen by plaintiff from the mails. By the United sity, and it is suggested that the same principles might

States statutes (U. S. R. S., S$ 4050, 4058), “all moneys apply to sales of land or mortgages. But in this coun

taken from the mails of United States by robbery, try the rule is not universally extended to sales of per

theft or otherwise, which come into the possession or sonalty, and is not applied to conveyances of real

custody of any of the agents of the post-office departestate. Crauford v. Scovell. Opinion by Trunkey, J.

ment, or any other officers of the United States, or any [Decided March 22, 1880.]

other person, shall be paid to the order of the postSURETYSHIP- FORBEARANCE DOES NOT DISCHARGE master-general, to be kept by hiin as other moneys of SURETY. – Mere forbearance, however prejudicial to the post-office department to and for the use and benethe surety, will not discharge him. This rule applies fit of the rightful owner, to be paid whenever satisfacwhere a creditor suffers a judgment to lose its lien for tory proof thereof shall be made," etc. Held, that the want of revival against the principal debtor, and trust in the deed could not be enforced. By the prothereby subsequent creditors are enabled to take the visions referred to the postmaster-general has the ex: land. United States v. Simpson, 3 P. & W. 437. Winton clusive right to the custody of money or other property v. Little. Opinion by Trunkey, J.

stolen from the mails and which comes into the pos[Decided May 3, 1880.]

session of any officer of the United States or other WATER-COURSE

person, and the exclusive jurisdiction to determine WHEN ARTIFICIAL TREATED AS

who are the rightful owners and to distribute among NATURAL COMPENSATION FOR APPROPRIATION

them. No court and no individual by an agreement EMINENT DOMAIN. – A provision of statute that com

with the thief can take away this right or defeat this pensation shall be made for damages to owners of land upon which a spring or stream of water is situated, by jurisdiction. The case is not altered by the fact that

the deed did not convey the identical property or reason of the permanent appropriation of the same under the power of eminent domain, held to apply to

money stolen from the mails. When plaintiff's propan artificial water-course of such long continuance

erty was transferred to Burt the jurisdiction of the "that the memory of man runneth not to the con

postmaster-general attached, and this court has no

rigbt to determine who is entitled to the property. trary.” Such a stream, for all practical purposes, is a

Laws v. Burt. Opinion by Morton, J. natural water-course prescriptively, and therefore legally it is so. The right to it could be no better were CRIMINAL LAW - FORGERY – MATERIAL ALTERAit natural. As was said by Gibson, C. J., in Seibert v. TION CONSTITUTES. — The material alteration of a Levan, 8 Barr, 383: “Whilst the grantor was lord of genuine written instrument is forgery. Accordingly the whole, he might assign a permanent channel to the where defendant was indicted for forgery of a certaiu stream, and as regards himself and those who claim receipt and it was shown that he had merely added

certain words and figures to a genuine receipt so as to petency or its sufficiency as matter of law. Parrott v. increase the amount, held, that there was no variance. Thacher, 9 Pick. 4:26; Vail v. Rice, 5 N. Y. 155; ParThe crime of forgery at common law is defined to be tridge y. Forsyth, 29 Ala. 200; Robinson v. United the fraudulent making or alteration of a written in- States, 13 Wall. 363. Jones v. Hoey. Opinion by strument to the prejudice of apother's right. 4 Bl. Gray, C. J. Com. 247. It is not necessary to the offense that the whole instrument should bo fictitious. A fraudulent insertion of additional words, or an alteration in a

RECENT ENGLISH DECISIONS. material part of a true document, by which another may be defrauded, is a forgery, and is well described AGENCY - FRAUD OF AGENT, LIABILITY OF UNINas such. The Gen. Stats., ch. 162, § 1, imposes punish- CORPORATED SOCIETY FOR.- By the rules of an uninment upon any one who falsely makes, alters, forges corporated building society the directors were authoror counterfeits certain written instruments therein ized to borrow money for the purposes of the society, named. When this statute was passed, it had been

but the total amount borrowed was at no time to settled by the law of England under similar statutes, exceed a certain limited amount. The plaintiffs lent that a forgery of the whole instrument and a material 1001. to the society, paying it in the ordinary course to alteration of it were not distinct offenses, and that the the treasurer. At the time of the loan the amount latter act was well charged in criminal proceedings as authorized to be borrowed by the directors had been a forgery of the whole. There are several cases in largely exceeded. The treasurer having embezzled tho which the English rule has been followed by the courts money, both the society and the directors denied their of this country, but none in which it appears to have liability. The jury having found that the treasurer been departed from. See Commonwealth v. Wood, 10 had been held out both by the directors and by tho Gray, 478; Commonwealth v. Butterick, 100 Mass. 12; society as a person authorized to receive the money, State v. Flye, 26 Me. 312; State v. Floyd, 5 Strobh. 58; held, that the society as well as the directors were State v. Weaver, 13 Ired. 491; State v. Maxwell, 47 equally liable for the frauds committed by him in tho Iowa, 454; State v. Marvels, 2 Harring. (Del.) 527. course of his employment, and therefore both were Commonwealth of Massachusetts v. Boutwell. Opinion liable to repay to the plaintiffs the amount advanced. by Colt, J.

Held, also, that the society were liable, although at the STATUTE OF FRAUDS

time the plaintiffs advanced the money the amount the CONTRACT INVALID BY, CAN

directors were authorized by the rules to borrow had ONLY BE AVOIDED BY PARTIES TO — MARINE INSUR

been largely exceeded. Barwick v. Joint Stock Bank, ANCE — INSURABLE INTEREST. -- Machado, who had by a verbal contract agreed to purchase a vessel for

LR., 2 Exch. 259; Mackay v. Commercial Bank of New

Brunswick, L. R., 5 P. C. 394. C. P. Div., April 24, $11,000, payable on the execution of a proper bill of

1880. Charles v. Brunswick Permanent Building Socisale, no part of the money being then paid, caused the vessel to be insured. Shortly after the bill of sale was

ety. Opinion by Coleridge, C. J., 42 L. T. Rep. (N. executed to a third person in trust for Machado, and

S.) 741. a part of the purchase-money paid. In an action upon


WHEN NOTICE OF MORTGAGE TO SOLICITOR the policy for a loss thereafter occurring, it was set up NOT NOTICE TO CLIENT — EQUITABLE INTEREST.- A in defense that Macbado had not, at the time of the solicitor, who was the sole trustee of certain settled insurance, an insurable interest in the vessel, the con

funds, advanced them to the tenant for life, and acted tract for its sale to him not being valid under the

as his solicitor, on his purchasing therewith land, statute of frauds, and being incapable of enforcement.

which was conveyed to the tenant for life, in his own Held, that the defense would not avail. The oral

name, in fee simple. There was no power under the contract to purchase was not void or illegal by reason

settlement to invest the trust funds in the purchase of of the statute of frauds. Indeed, the statute presup

land. The land was subsequently mortgaged by the poses an existing lawful contract; it affects the remedy

tenant for life, who received and appropriated the only as between the parties, and not the validity of the

money advanced to C., the trustee of the settlement contract itself; and, where the contract has actually

acting as solicitor for both mortgagor and mortgagee, been performed, even as between the parties them- and the mortgage containing absolute covenants for selves, it stands unaffected by the statute. It is there

title in fee by the mortgagor. The land was subsefore to be “treated as a valid subsisting contract

quently mortgaged to several persons, subject to the when it comes in question between other parties for

prior mortgage or mortgages, but without notice of purposes other than a recovery upon it." Townsend the trust. Held, that the circumstances were such v. Hargraves, 118 Mass. 325. Machado had, under his as to repel the construction or imputation of notice to oral agreement, an interest in the vessel, and would the solicitor-trustee being notice to C., and that he have suffered a loss by her injury or destruction.

was entitled to his mortgage for the money intended Eastern Railroad v. Relief Ins. Co., 98 Mass. 420.

to be thereby secured. Held, also (following Lewis v. Amsink v. American Insurance Co. Opinion by Endi

Maddocks, 17 Ves. 48), that the interest of the person cott, J.

beneficially entitled in remainder under the settle

ment was an equitable estate or interest, that as such USAGE — AS TO SALE OF TOBACCO BY WEIGHT AT

it was different from a mere equity, as distinguished in TIME OF PACKING INSTEAD OF AT THAT OF SALE-ONE

Phillips v. Phillips, 5 L. T. Rep. (N. S.) 655; 4 D. F. & WITNESS MAY PROVE USAGE. — (1) Where tobacco was

J. 208, and following the last-named case, that being sold by sample and by weight, without more specific

prior in date to the equitable interests of the subseagreement, held, that evidence of a general usage was

quent mortgagees, it prevailed over them, notwithadmissible to show that the weight was to be computed

standing they were purchasers for value without noas previously ascertained at the time of packing and

tice of the trust. Ch. Div., April 27, 1880.

Cave v. marked on the cases, and not by the actual weight at

Cave. Opinion by Fry, J., 42 L. T. Rep. (N. S.) 730. the time of the sale. Bottomley v. Forbes, 6 Scott, 866; Barry v. Bennett, 7 Metc. 354; Miller v. Stevens, TITLE — TO GOODS PLEDGED UNDER UNREGISTERED 100 Mass. 518. (2) Notwithstanding the dictum in BILL OF SALE — BONA FIDE PURCHASER. — By tho Boardman v. Spooner, 13 Allen, 353, 359, there can be no terms of an unregistered bill of sale of stock-in-trade doubt, at the present day, that the circumstance that granted by a tradesman to the plaintiff to secure a but one witness testifies to a usage is important only as loan, it was provided that the money was to be repaybearing upon the credibility and satisfactoriness of his able on demand, but until default the grantor was to testimony in point of fact, and does not affect its com- hold, make use of, and possess the goods assigned, without hindrance of the plaintiff. Before any de- reference in the instrument to the exact nature of mand was made, the grantor fraudulently and not in the estate conveyed. We have looked at the cases the ordinary course of his business sold the whole of

cited by Scribner under this head, and find that they the stock-in-trade to the defendants, who purchased bona fide and without knowledge of the fraud. Held,

hold in substance nothing more than that there must that the desendants acquired no property in the goods, be express words of release or of grant, in such a deed. and that the fact that they purchased bona fide was The deed carries the interest of the wife in the premimmaterial. C. P. Div., May 3, 1880. Taylor v. Mc

ises. In addition to the case cited by our correKeand. Opinion by Coleridge, C. J., and Denman, J.,

spondent, this is the holding in Learned v. Cutler, 42 L. T. Rep. (N. S.) 833.

18 Pick. 9, and Dustin v. Steele, 27 N. H. 431.

We think this principle is the universal one, and can CORRESPONDENCE.

find no case making any exception to it. — ED. ALB.

L. J.] “ APPARENTLY INCONSISTENT DATA" EXPLAINED. Editor of the Albany Law Journal:

Editor of the Albany Law Journal: The cases of Armstrong v. Cummings, 20 Hun, 313,

I wish to call your attention to section 1725 of tho and People ex rel. Denhardt v. Kelly, id. 549, are en

new Code, and also to subdivision 2 of section 1762. tirely consistent with each other.

What is the policy of the former, or what benefit can In the first case the premises were described as No.

arise to the defendant by reason of it? 149 West Forty-fifth street, and as all of West Forty

In subdivision 2 of the latter section should not the fifth street was contained in one judicial district, and

words “former" and "latter” be transposed? Tho as the names of the streets and parts of streets con

substitution of the words “defendant" and "plainttained in the several wards and districts in the city of

iff” for the “husbaud” and “wife" of the R. S. was New York could be ascertained from the public laws,

an improvement; but may not the commissioners or the court held that they would take judicial potice of

engrossers have made an error in the latter part of the the number of the district in which the premises were

subdivision ?

J. H. N. situated. In the second case the premises were described as

[1. Mr. Commissioner Throop states that this is a No. 341 Fifth avenue, aud as Fifth avenue does not lie

substitute for the practice of stating in the answer wholly within any one district, but extends through several, the court held that they could not from the the disposition that has been made of the property number of the bouse determine upon what portion of and demanding a judgment for its return, such the avenue it stood, and hence could not determine in practice being inconsistent with the existing mode which of the several districts through which that ave

of procedure and the proper functions of an answer. nue extends it was located. The difference between the two cases is clearly stated

2. We think the language is correct as it stands, alin the second paragraph of the head-note to The People though perhaps the other way would be equally corex rel. v. Kelly.

L. G. H. rect. - ED. ALB. L. J.]
ALBANY, Sept. 29, 1880.


Editor of the Albany Law Journal:
Editor of the Albany Law Journal :

The suggestion of your correspondent (p. 239) as to In examining a title I have encountered a deed by a

the reporting of authorities cited by counsel ought not husband owning the fee in which the wife is joined,

to meet with the approval of the profession. The obwhich contains the usual full covenants and is properly

ject of law reporting, as we understand it, is to preacknowledged, but the usual words, “dower and right

serve the opinions of the court, and not the briefs of of dower” are omitted, and there are no other words

counsel. Mr. Lee's idea is certainly opposed to the which might operate as a release eo nomine. I have reform which is so much needed in this department. been greatly surprised at the diversity of opinion

We want contraction and not expansion in our reamong lawyers of the highest standing here, upon the


Very respectfully yours, question as to whether express words must be used to

A. TAUSIG. bar any claim for dower. I have exhausted authori

PITTSBURG, PENN., Sept. 28, 1880. ties and treatises bearing upon the subject, and have found that there are decisions in point in many of the States except New York; notably among the many Editor of the Albany Law Journal: cases is that of Smith v. Handy, 16 Ohio, 191, which

In reply to the wish expressed by you in the ALBANY holds flatfooted in favor of the deed as stated. But I

LAW JOURNAL of 18th inst., “that some of our Lonam unable to satisfy myself that the law in this State is the same, and while I am convinced that the law as

don contemporaries would supply us with statistics

showing the number of judicial officers and the laid down in the case cited is sound, yet I hesitate to

amount of litigated business in England," I, though pass upon the subject owing to the fact that so many of our best conveyancers here hold firmly to an oppo

not a London contemporary, have endeavored to comsite view

ply with the first part of your requisition. I have no If not too much trouble, will you kindly publish

means of ascertaining “the amount of litigated busi

ness in England," but judging from the statistics conyour views upon the subject, not only for my benefit,

tained in the current number of the Law Magazine but for the informatiou of many others who are

and Review, to which I used to be a contributor, relatgreatly interested in a solution of the question, and oblige Very truly yours,

F. L. M.

ing to the county courts during the year 1877, and NEW YORK, Sept. 29, 1880.

taking into account my own experience as a practicing

barrister in England so late as the year 1874, and the [It would seem that the joining of the wife with

accounts which I receive still from professional friends

there, I should say that the cases tried in the Superior the husband in a conveyance of the premises to a

Courts and at the Assizes, and in sundry local courts, third person should bar her dower, without express would amount to doublo the number tried in tho

county courts alone. This, however, is mere conjecture, as I have no means at hand to test such belief, but the difficulty experienced by the judges, so late as last year, in reducing the arrears, confirms my view. I have, however, much pleasure in fạrnishing you with the inclosed. It is an abstract of the approximate cost of all judicial officers in England and Wales :

SUPERIOR COURTS. About forty judges, including the ex-chancellors and retired judges (who give good valuo for their pensions by rendering their services and matured experience available in tbe House of Lords, if peers, and in the judicial committee of the Privy Council) discharge the law business of the Superior Courts of England and Wales at an aggregate cost somewhat exceeding $1,000,000. The statistics are as follows:

Supreme Court of Judicature. Lord Chancellor ....

£10,000 Two Lords of Appeal in Ordinary (£6,000 each)...

12,000 Three Chief Justices of Courts of Q. B.-C. P. and Exch. - aggregating

22,000 Master of the Rolls

6,000 Court of Appeal. Six ordinary Lords Justices of Appeal, aggregating

31,000 High Court of Justice. Four Judges of Chancery Division, one of

whom is also Chief Judge of Bankruptcy Court......

20,000 Four Puisne Judges of Court of Q. B..... 20,000

C. P.

20,000 Exch..

20,000 Two Judges of the Probate, Divorce and Admiralty Courts, aggregating....

10,000 Judge of the Arches and Church Discipline Court....

5,000 T'wo paid members of the Judicial Commit

tee of the Privy Council, aggregating...... 10,000 The ex-Chancellors and retired Judges who

give their services as before mentioned, aggregating, on the average, say..

25,000 Total cost of Superior Courts....

£211,000 Or....


There are also fifty-eight judges of county

courts, at a salary of £1,500 each, aggregat-
ing therefor.....

£87,000 The registrars of these county courts, having

judicial duties in undefended causes, number upward of 500, and their aggregate re

muneration cannot amount to less than.... 250,000 The recorders of cities and boroughs number

112, some of them having a civil jurisdiction for the trial of causes, and all possessing a quasi civil jurisdiction in matters of appeal in rating, assessments, granting or refusing licenses, bastardy cases, and appeals against summary convictions; their aggregate cost may be set down at about... 17,000 Magistrates of the Metropolitan Police

Courts. Twenty-three, aggregating.....

28,000 Other stipendiary magistrates throughout the

country, numbering 20, and aggregating about

17.000 Other judicial officers, such as the common

serjeant, commissioner and judge of sheriff's court in the city of London, assistant judge and deputy assistant judge of the Middlesex Sessions (having a like civil jurisdiction with all courts of quarter ses sions)...

7,000 Two Masters in Lunacy, aggregating.


£410,000 Or......

$2,070,000 This estimate does not embrace clerks of the

peace for counties and boroughs, numbering at least 200 or 250, high sheriffs or sheriffs and their deputies, though the latter exercise judicial duties in trying certain cases where damages alone have to be assessed, and also compensation cases. Neither does it include such judicial officers as vice-chancellors of the Duchy of Lancaster, of the county Palatine of Durham, the judge of the Hundred of Salford; the passage court of Liverpool; the vicewarden of Stannaries, and other local courts; nor yet the judges of the courts of survey; the wreck commissioners, nor the forty-three district registrars of the probate court, most of whom are paid by fees not

easily ascertainable. Barristers appointed to revise the list of

voters for Parliamentary elections, and numbering about 100, exercise judicial functions in investigating disputed property qualifications, and an appeal lies from their decisions to one of the Superior Courts. Their aggregate cost, together with two commissioners for the trial of municipal election petitions, amounts to about


Total ....

If to these are added Registrars of the Court

of Bankruptcy, who sit judicially and as connected with the above courts, the Queen's Remembrancer – the Masters of the Courts of Q. B. — C. P. and Exch., who exercise judicial duties as referees, a fur

ther sum must be computed, aggregating.. £24,000 And if, in addition, the chief clerks of the

Judges of the Chancery Division of the
High Court of Justice, who sit judicially to
take evidence and report the result to the
court, are taken into account, a further
sum must be computed of at least......... 6,000

Total extra cost of Superior Courts..... £30,000


[blocks in formation]

Assistant Commissioners of Assize, engaged

ou circuit trials and appointed pro hac vice as circumstances require, to supplement the Judges of the Superior Courts, at a probable aggregate cost of......


The chairmen of quarter sessions, who are generally gentlemen of cousiderable experience in the commis. sion of the peace, and sometimes counsel of eminence, county court judges or retired Q. C.'s, give their services to the country gratuitously or the cost of judicial offices would be still further increased.

Yours, respectfully,


Additional cost of tho samo. Or.....

£6,000 $30,000

« PreviousContinue »