« AnteriorContinuar »
present term, it must be held that the cause of action in this case was not a maritime tort of which a District Court of the United States, as a court of admiralty, would have jurisdiction; and that the remedy belonged wholly to a court of common law; the substance and consummation of the wrong having taken place on land, and not on navigable water, and the cause of action not having been complete on such waters."
It is unnecessary to cite the numerous cases to the same effect to be found in the books. The rule stated has been accepted generally by bench and bar, and has never been overruled, though counsel express the hope that it may be because of our decision in The Blackheath, 195 U. S. 361. In that case Mr. Justice Brown, in concurring, announced the view that the effect of the decision was to overrule what had previously been laid down in the cases we have cited. But the court held that the opinion was not opposed to the prior adjudications, and, without entering into the elements of distinction between that case and The Plymouth, said (p. 367): “It is enough to say that we now are dealing with an injury to a Government aid to navigation from ancient times subject to the admiralty, a beacon emerging from the water, injured by the motion of the vessel, by a continuous act beginning and consummated upon navigable water, and giving character to the effects upon a point which is only. technically land, through a connection at the bottom of the sea.”
The case was a libel in rem against a British vessel for the destruction of a beacon, number 7, Mobile ship channel lights, caused by the alleged negligent running into the beacon by the vessel. The beacon stood fifteen or twenty feet from the channel of Mobile River, or bay, in water twelve or fifteen feet deep, and was built on piles driven firmly into the bottom. The damage was to property located in navigable waters, solely an aid to navigation and maritime in nature, and hav- . ing no other purpose or function.
In the present case damage to shore dock, and to bridge, protection piling and pier, by a vessel being forced against
each of them by the vessel proceeded against, as well as damage to shore dock, abutment, protection piling, pier and dock foundation by a wash said to be due to the increased current arising from partial damming of the stream by the three vessels, brought into such position by the alleged fault of the vessel proceeded against, was sought to be recovered. But the bridges, shore docks, protection piling, piers, etc., pertained to the land. They were structures connected with the shore and immediately concerned commerce upon land. None of these structures were aids to navigation in the maritime sense, but extensions of the shore and aids to commerce on land as such.
The proposition contended for is that the jurisdiction of the admiralty court should be extended to "any claim for damages by any ship,” according to the English statute; but we are not inclined to disturb the rule that has been settled for so many years because of some supposed convenience. Unless we do that, this decree must be affirmed and
It is so ordered.
APPEAL FROM THE DISTRICT COURT OF THE UNITED STATES FOR
THE WESTERN DISTRICT OF WISCONSIN.
No. 232. Submitted December 20, 1907.- Decided February 24, 1908.
Cleveland Terminal Co. v. Steamship Co., ante, p. 316, followed to effect that
the admiralty does not have jurisdiction of a claim for damages to a bridge which, although in navigable waters, is so connected with the land that it immediately concerns commerce on land.
The facts are stated in the opinion.
1 Docket title, No. 232, Duluth & Superior Bridge Company v. Steamer “Troy,” her Boilers, Engines, etc.
Mr. Charles E. Kremer and Mr. John A. Murphy for appellant.
Mr. Harvey D. Goulder, Mr. Frank S. Masten, Mr. H. A. Kelley, Mr. H. R. Spencer and Mr. S. H. Holding for appellee.
MR. CHIEF JUSTICE FULLER delivered the opinion of the court.
The Duluth and Superior Bridge Company owned and operated a bridge between the cities of Duluth, Minnesota, and Superior, Wisconsin, over the St. Louis River, a navigable stream. The bridge was equipped with a swinging span, supported on a turntable resting on a base of stone and piles driven into the bottom of the river, leaving a space for the passage of vessels on either side of the supporting structure. When closed its ends rested upon permanent abutments, forming a passageway over the stream for street cars and foot passengers, and when opened allowing the passage of the largest lake steamers.
On August 11, 1906, the merchant steamer Troy, inbound, struck the center pier protection and glanced into the draw of the bridge, inflicting heavy damage. The bridge company. filed a libel against the Troy in the Distriet Court for the Western District of Wisconsin in admiralty, claiming large damages. The Western Transit Company, owner of the Troy, filed exceptions to the libel, as follows:
“Ist. That it appears from the averments of the libel that the bridge alleged to have been injured was a structure on land, for purposes of land travel and convenience exclusively, not erected, maintained or operated in any sense or in any degree in aid of navigation, but, on the contrary, an obstruction and impediment to the navigation of a public navigable water channel and highway, a part of the public waters of the United. States, then and there navigable to ships engaged in commerce and navigation.
“2d. Thåt whatever of damage came to the bridge occurred
on land, and no part of the same occurred or was suffered on water in place or manner within the jurisdiction of an admiralty court of the United States.
“3d. That the claim of damage propounded in the libel fails to show a case within the admiralty jurisdiction of this honorable court, according to the grant of such jurisdiction in the Constitution of the United States and the course and practice in admiralty courts of the United States."
The court sustained the exceptions and dismissed the libel with costs, whereupon the case was brought by appeal to this court, the question of jurisdiction being certified.
The Cleveland Terminal & Valley Railroad Company v. The Cleveland Steamship Company, ante, p. 316, just decided, involved substantially the same questions of jurisdiction that are involved in this case. There the steamer Reis collided with the center protection of a bridge located in the navigable channel of the Cuyahoga River and injured it, and at the same time the abutment or shore end of the bridge, and the wharf or dock in the vicinity. In that case the bridge itself was not injured, while in this case the center protection and bridge were both injured. The views we have expressed in that case must govern the disposition of this case, and the
Decree is affirmed.
ARMSTRONG, AS LIQUIDATOR OF BOYSEN & COM
PANY, v. FERNANDEZ.
APPEAL FROM THE DISTRICT COURT OF THE UNITED STATES FOR
No. 114. Submitted January 17, 1908.-Decided February 24, 1908.
The power of the bankruptcy court over amendments is undoubted and rests in the discretion of the court. In this case that discretion was not abused in allowing amendments adding the name of the place to the jurat of the justice of the peace taking the verification, and an averment that the person proceeded against in bankruptcy did not come within the excepted
classes of persons who may not be declared bankrupts. Where the record of a proceeding to have a person declared a bankrupt
shows that detailed findings of the commission of acts of bankruptcy could have been supported by the evidence, the presumption is that such findings would have been made had appellant so requested; and, in the absence of such a request, the general finding that the party could be declared, and was adjudged, a bankrupt is sufficiently broad to cover any question involved upon the evidence as to the bankrupt’s occupation and the commission of acts of bankruptcy.
APPELLEES, residing in Juana Diaz, Porto Rico, filed on the twenty-ninth day of March, A. D. 1906, their petition in duplicate, praying that Pascasio Alvarado, also of Juana Diaz, be adjudged a bankrupt. They averred that Alvarado had, for the greater portion of six months next preceding the filing of the petition, his principal place of business at Juana Diaz, and owed debts to the amount of a thousand dollars, and that petitioners were his creditors and had provable claims amounting in the aggregate, in excess of securities held by them, to the sum of five hundred dollars, the nature and amount of each of said claims being specified.
The petition further stated "that said Pascasio Alvarado is insolvent, and that within four months next preceding the date of this petition the said Pascasio Alvarado committed an act of bankruptcy, in that he did heretofore, to wit, on the