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It is made to appear by samples, and otherwise, that velvet cloth commonly imported for the manufacture of velvet buttons, is punctured so as to produce four to five times as many like holes within the same space as the cloth in question. Our conclusion, as matter of fact, is that the velvet under consideration is fitted for various other uses than the manufacture of buttons, and for this reason does not fall within paragraph 382, above cited.

The decision of the collector is affirmed.

(10571.-G. A. 221.)

Wool-Dress goods, silk-warp Henriettas.

NEW YORK, December 20, 1890.

Before the Board of United States General Appraisers at New York, December 1890.

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In the matter of the protests of George B. Mudge, Nos. 60, 61, and 62 a, against the rate of duty assessed by the collector of customs at New York on certain so-called "silk and worsted goods," imported at dates and in vessels named in accompanying schedule.

Opinion by Somerville, General Appraiser.

The appraiser returns the goods as "silk-warp Henrietta," composed of wool or worsted in part, and silk in part, in the lower grades of which silk is the component material of chief value, and in the higher grades the wool is of chief value. They are invoiced as "dress goods, silk warps, and Henriettas," and are stated to consist of women's and children's dress goods composed of silk in the warp and worsted in the weft. The goods were classified by the collector under paragraph 365 of the tariff law of 1883, and assessed accordingly.

The only contention presented by the importer in his protest is that silk is the component material of chief value, and that the merchandise should be assessed at 50 per cent. ad valorem, under paragraph 383, which levies that rate of duty on "all goods, wares, and merchandise, not specially enumerated or provided for in this act, made of silk, or of which silk is the component material of chief value."

Admitting the truth of the fact claimed as to the relative value of the silk material in these dress goods, they can not properly be classified under T. I., 383, because they are specially provided for by the more particular designation of "women's and children's dress goods composed in part of wool, worsted," etc., under T. I., 365. This fact

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takes the goods out of the operation of the other paragraph describing them only by the chief value of the component material of silk. This view was taken by the Treasury Department as far back as October, 1883, as will appear by Synopsis of Treasury Decisions No. 5953, and the uniform customs practice has been in accordance with that ruling. The collector's decision must be affirmed.

(10572.-G. A. 222.)

Wool knit goods, silk chief value.

NEW YORK, December 20, 1890.

Before the Board of United States General Appraisers at New York, December-, 1890.

In the matter of the protest, 411 a, of Gutmann & Leopold, against the assessment of duty by the collector of customs at New York on certain so-called "silk and wool goods," imported per La Normandie, June 24, 1890.

Opinion by Somerville, General Appraiser.

The goods are stated to be composed of silk and wool, and are commercially known as "ladies' vests, knit goods." They were classified as worsted "knit goods" under paragraph 363 of the tariff act of 1883, Schedule K, relating to "wool and woolens." That paragraph enumerates "flannels, blankets, hats of wool, knit goods, and all goods made on knitting-frames, balmorals, woolen and worsted yarns, and all manufactures of every description, composed wholly or in part of worsted, the hair of the alpaca, goat, or other animals (except such as are composed in part of wool), not specially enumerated or provided for in this act," meaning the act of March 3, 1883.

"Knit goods" by that designation are also excepted from the provision made for "wearing apparel of every description" by paragraph 366.

The contention of the importers is that silk enters into these goods as the component material of chief value, and for this reason they should be classified under paragraph 383 of said act.

Commercial designation is the first and most important inquiry, and when this fails resort must next be had to common designation. (Robertson vs. Solomon, 130 U. S., 412.)

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The phrase "knit goods," whether one of commercial or common designation, is more minute in description than a description of the material from which an article is manufactured, or of the component material of chief value. Although, therefore, the goods are made in part of silk, and silk be conceded to be the component material of chief value, they do not come within the scope of paragraph 383, because they are provided for otherwise in paragraph 363 under the more specific description "knit goods" composed in part of worsted. The decision of the collector is affirmed.

(10573.-G. A. 223.)

Guns, incomplete-Duty on.

NEW YORK, December 22, 1890.

Before the Board of United States General Appraisers at New York, December 22, 1890.

In the matter of the protest, No. 3169 a, of Schoverling, Daly & Gales, against the rate of duty assessed by the collector at the port of New York on certain so called "breech-loading shot-guns," imported per Amsterdam, October 20, 1890.

Opinion by Somerville, General Appraiser.

The merchandise is described in the entry as "12 finished gun-stocks, with locks and mountings." The report of the assistant appraiser states that the articles are "gun-stocks, with mountings complete, ready for attachment to the barrels, which arrived by another shipment," and that "the gun-stocks and barrels, when attached, make breech-loading shot-guns complete."

The collector reports that the articles were returned to him by the appraiser, upon the face of the invoice, as "breech-loading shot-guns." valued at not over $6 each, and he assessed them at the rate of 35 per cent. ad valorem and a specific duty of $1.50 each, under the provisions of paragraph 170 of the tariff act of October 1, 1890, which levies these rates of duty on "all double-barreled, sporting, breech-loading shotguns, valued at not more than $6 each;" and on "single-barrel, breech-loading shot-guns, $1 each and 35 per cent. ad valorem."

The importers' protest presents but one contention, and this is, that a gun-stock, complete or incomplete, is not a fire-arm, and can not therefore be classified as a gun, either breech or muzzle loading; that the gun-stocks in question are simply parts of guns, and should be as

sessed as manufactures in part of steel, under paragraph 215 of the act of October 1, 1890.

If the importation in question was simply one of gun-stocks, without the gun-barrels required to make a complete fire-arm, and the case rested here, the articles could not be regarded as completed guns, so as to justify their classification as such under paragraph 170 of the present tariff law. Parts of guns, it may be admitted, are not completed guns, any more than parts of musical instruments are completed musical instruments, and the latter proposition has been decided negatively by the Supreme Court of the United States in Robertson vs. Gerdau, October term, 1890, and many times re-affirmed by this Board in its decisions. Gun-stocks, or other parts of guns, bona fide and separately imported, then, would ordinarily be classified as manufactures of wood or metal, according to the relative value and predominance of the material from which they are manufactured. (Synopsis Treasury Decisions 4969 and 6307; tariff law 1890, paragraphs 215 and 230.) But the present case is peculiar in its facts, and differs materially from any other which has come before this Board, or which has been decided by the courts, so far as we can discover.

The testimony of a member of the firm of Schoverling, Daly & Gales, the protestants in the present case, discloses the following facts: 1. That the said firm has imported the gun-stocks in question.

2. That the said firm had an agreement with another firm by which the latter were to order the barrels for these goods, with the mutual expectation that the stocks and barrels after arriving at the port of New York were to be put together so as to make complete guns.

3. That Mr. A. Schoverling, one of the appellants, was a member of both of these firms or co-partnerships thus colluding together.

The question then is this: Congress has declared that an import duty shall be levied on all guns imported into the United States. Is it permissible for two firms, having a common partner interested in each, to collude together to separately import the stocks and the barrels of guns with the understanding that the parts shall be put together after arrival so as to make completed guns, and this done for the manifest purpose of getting the merchandise at a less rate of duty? Would this not be a legal fraud on the revenue laws of the Government? Our opinion is that the law does not encourage its own infraction by such a subterfuge. It is a maxim that the law abhors fraud in every phase, and experience shows its forms are legion. It is also a maxim that the law does not allow that to be done indirectly which can not be lawfully done directly.

With every disposition to construe the tariff laws favorably to importers, so far as to give them the benefit of all reasonable doubts, we can safely reach no other conclusion than that such a mode of evading the payment of duties can not be safely tolerated. It would lead to the encouragement of a low standard of commercial morality, and operate with injustice upon the interest of other importers who are disposed to deal fairly with the Government by refusal to resort to such subterfuges.

The decision of the collector is affirmed.

(10574.-G. A. 224.)

Leather cases containing combs-Duty on.

NEW YORK, December 24, 1890.

Before the Board of United States General Appraisers at New York, December 24, 1890.

In the matter of the protest, 1198 a, of W. H. Schiefflin & Co., against the assessment of duty by the collector of customs at New York on coverings for merchandise, imported per La Bourgogne, July 31, 1890. Opinion by Somerville, General Appraiser.

The coverings in question are leather cases containing pocket combs. They were returned by the appraiser as coverings "for use other than in the transportation of the goods to the United States," and duty was assessed on them at the rate of 100 per cent. ad valorem, under section 7 of the tariff act of March 3, 1883.

There is no claim in the protest that these coverings are free of duty, but it is contended that they are dutiable at the rate of 30 per cent. under paragraph 419 of said act, which imposes that rate of ad valorem duty on "combs of all kinds."

It has been held, and we think correctly so, that if such coverings are dutiable at all under the provisions of section 7 of the act of March 3, 1883 (22 Stat., 523), they are dutiable at the rate of 100 per cent. ad valorem without regard to the rate levied by law on the goods contained in the coverings. In other words, the coverings are either free or subject to 100 per cent. duty. (United States vs. Thurber, 28 Fed. Rep., 56; Meyers vs. Shurtleff, 23 Id., 577.)

The ground of objection taken in the protest not being well taken, it must be overruled, and the collector's decision affirmed.

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