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15TH CONGRESS, HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES. , Mis. Doc. 3d Session. }
PROPERTY IN METAL CASTINGS.
MARCH 3, 1879.-Committed to the Committee of the Whole House on the state of
the Union and ordered to be printed.
Mr. WILLIAM E. SMITH, from the Committee on Patents, submitted the
following as the
VIEWS OF THE MINORITY:
[To accompany. bill H. R. 4665.] Our objections may be briefly stated. During the present session of Congress, several gentlemen interested in the manufacture of stoves appeared before the Committee on Patents, and appealed for a remedy for what they called piracy of their stove-patterns. They stated, substantially, that, to get up a new stove, the wooden patterns usually cost from $3 to $8, and that after the stove had been placed on the market, became popular, and in demand, unprincipled stove manufacturers would purchase a genuine stove, file off the ornamentations, supply other designs, and then, from the several parts of this stove, cast an imitation and put it on the market, and thus get the benefit of their wooden patterns without their consent and without consideration.
They further claimed that this imitation so cast from the several parts of the genuine stove is a greatly inferior article, and thus, while injuring the sale of the genuine stove, they impose upon and cheat the public.
This is the evil complained of, and we are free to admit that such stove manufacturers are injured, and perhaps the public too, by such practices of imitators.
The first inquiry that naturally arises is as to what the law now is that it does not afford protection.
In the present advanced state of stove manufacturing it is almost impossible to obtain a patent for stove designs. The only part of a stove that can be patented is its ornamentation. The imitators, to avoid infringing these patents, file off the original ornaments and substitute others, thus, and in fact, using nothing of the genuine stove except bare plates or parts. The imitators duplicate the genuine stove without its ornaments. For this wrong, the law of patents as it now stands affords no sufficient protection.
We believe that section 4937 of the Revised Statutes of the United States relating to trade-marks affords a complete protection to this class of wrongs, and that further legislation is unnecessary.
This effort on the part of these complaining stove manufacturers is really one to secure for them patents for articles not patentable, and cannot be patented. We respectfully submit, too, that while the bill proposed by a majority of the committee may effect the desired result, it goes entirely too far. It not only covers original patterns for stoves, but it covers every conceivable original pattern for metal castings. It covers plows, cutlery, engines, and kinds of machinery. It includes all
kinds of metals from the softest to the hardest, from the most worthless to the most valuable. It includes the useless as well as the useful. It includes by its very terms original patterns for metal castings for inventions the patents of which have long since expired. What is there in the bill that would prevent the owners of the original wood pattern for Newbold's cast-iron plow from registering it and claiming the protection and remedies offered by this bill? And if they, why may not every other designer or inventor? Practically, it prevents the parchaser of such a casting, where a part from accident is broken, from rsing t, broken part as a pattern to supply its place. It is a bill to protect all sorts of patterns for metal castings now in existence, and not to encourage the production of useful ones in the future. In fine, the first section of the bill is nothing more or less than an attempt to extend the patent laws to pattern-makers of metal castings.
While we admit that Congress has power to promote the progress of the useful arts by securing to inventors for a limited time exclusive property in their inventions, still we cannot shut our eyes to the fact that many original patterns for metallic castings do not promote the useful arts. Those that are new and tend to promote the useful arts can be patented, and those that are old and do not, should not be protected. In the case of stoves, there cannot be anything new; and if there should be, it can be patented. In the making of these wooden patterns there is nothing new. There is no invention. If there be new designs of ornaments, they can be patented.
Besides, we submit, that unless there is something new, some discorery made or something invented, Congress has no power to secure an exclusive property, in the nature of a patent, to pattern-makers or to the proprietors thereof. We deny, too, the right of a seller of a store or plow or other casting not patentable, after he has conveyed the same to a purchaser, to control its use in any way or for any purpose in the hands of such purchaser.
The law of trade-marks and patents is sufficient, in our judgment, and we recommend that the bill do not pass.
WM. E. SMITH.
I concur in the foregoing adverse report.
R. W. TOWNSHEND.
APPROPRIATIONS, NEW OFFICES, ETC.
I. APPROPRIATIONS MADE DURING THE THIRD SESSION OF THE FORTY
WITH THE AMOUNT OF SUCH INCREASE, DURING THE SAME
MARCH 3, 1879.
PREPARED UNDER THE DIRECTION OF THE SECRETARY OF THE SENATE AND
PURPOSES," APPROVED JULY 4, 1836.
Appropriations made during the third session of the Forty-fifth Congress.
By the act making appropriations for the support of the Military Academy for the fiscal year ending June
30, 1880, and for other purposes.
87, 000 00 21, 000 00 7, 213 33
900 00 4, 000 00
1, 500 00 2, 400 00
300 00 1, 500 00 150, 000 00
1, 080 00 8, 999 00
11, 000 00 40, 000 00
12, 000 00
600 00 3, 000 00 300 00
600 00 1, 750 00
500 00 1, 200 00 1, 200 00
900 00 500 00
For pay of two professors, at $3,500 per annum each
as first lieutenants
pay as second lieutenants
slate, tin, sheet-lead, zinc, nails, screws, locks, hinges, glass, paint, turpentine, oils,
pairs of steam-beating apparatus
of the same
mucilage, wax, wafers, folders, fasteners, files, and ink
struments, $25; text-books, books of reference, and stationery for instructors, $175; in
ing-hall and gymnasium, $300; repairing camp-stools and camp-furniture, $50 ; furni-
of instruments, text-books, books of reference, and stationery for the use of instruct-
room, $1,000 : models and diagrams, books of reference, text-books, and stationery for
the use of instructors, 815; in all For department of practical military engineering : For mining materials and for profil.
ing; telegraphing and signaling materials; stationery and text-books and repairs of in
struments For department of French : For text-books and stationery for the use of instructors,
books of reference, and for printing examination-papers.
to illustrate the laws in mechanics, optics, and acoustics. $1,000: books of reference,
text books, repairs, and materials. $400 for pay of mechanic, 81,000; in all.... For expenses of the Board of Visitors, including mileage For miscellaneous and contingent expenses: For gas-coal, oil, candles, lanterns, matches,
and wicking for lighting the academy, cadet-barracks, mess-hall, shops, hospital, offices, stable, and sidewalks, $3,500 ; water pipes, plumbing, and repairs, $1,500 ; cleaning public buildings (not quarters), $500 ; brooms, brushes, pails, tubs, soap, and cloths, $200 ;
1, 000 00
1, 065 00
40 00 100 00
2, 400 00 3, 000 00
292, 707 33