Lapas attēli

Opinion of the Court.

court is ignorant of the history of the enterprise; it sustains the application and appoints a receiver, and the rolling stock is taken possession of by that receiver. Can it be held that such possession, taken at the instance of the trustee, casts no burden on the road, either for purchase price or rental prior to the claim of the original mortgage? Can the trustee, forcibly, through the power of a court, compel an appropriation of this rolling stock for the benefit of the property subject to its lien without compensation? Does not its application for possession carry with it an assent that rental for such rolling stock shall be first paid, as one of the expenses of the receivership which it has invoked? But one answer can be made to this inquiry, and that is that its application is a consent to the payment of reasonable rental during the possession of the receiver -- a rental not based upon the use actually made by the receiver, but on the ordinary value of the rental of such property. So, although it may be true, as claimed by counsel, that more was taken possession of than was needed, and that there was only a limited use of each car and engine, yet the case is to be taken as though all were needed and full use made of all; and that sum which would be reasonable rental value for such use should be paid. Such value is not to be determined by the amount of actual use, but by what, in the first instance and before the use had been had, would be adjudged a reasonable rental value. Upon such basis no complaint can be made of the amount fixed by the court, reducing as it did the amount reported by the master.

These are the only matters which, by the exceptions filed to the master's report respecting rentals, were reserved for our consideration. Our conclusion, therefore, in the two cases is, that the decrees must be Reversed, and the cases remanded with instructions to strike

out all allowances for rental prior to December 1, 1883, the time when the receiver was appointed at the instance of the mortgagees, and to allow the rentals as fixed for the

time subsequent thereto. Counsel for the Grant claims expressly stated, in open court,

in his argument, that in case certain appeals from the

Statement of the Case.

Sixth Circuit were affirmed there might result a double allowance to his clients, which they did not insist upon. As the details and sum are not clearly presented, we can only say that this matter must be taken into account in the subsequent disposition of the cases.

Mr. JUSTICE BRADLEY dissented.










No. 1190.

Submitted October 28, 1889. – Decided May 19, 1890.

An agency of a line of railroad between Chicago and New York, established

in San Francisco for the purpose of inducing passengers going from San Francisco to New York to take that line at Chicago, but not engaged in selling tickets for the route, or receiving or paying out money on account of it, is an agency engaged in interstate commerce; and a license-tax imposed upon the agent for the privilege of doing business in San Francisco is a tax upon interstate commerce, and is unconstitutional.

Order No. 1589 of the board of supervisors of the city and county of San Francisco, “imposing municipal licenses” provided among other things, as follows:

“Sec. 1. Every person who shall violate any of the provisions of this order shall be deemed guilty of a misdemeanor, and upon conviction thereof shall be punished by a fine not more than one thousand dollars or by imprisonment no more than six months or by both.”

“Sec. 10. The rates of license shall be according to the following schedule :

“Subdivision XXXIII. "First. For every railroad agency, twenty-five dollars per quarter."

Argument for Defendant in Error.

The plaintiff in error, J. G. McCall, was an agent in the city and county of San Francisco, California, for the New York, Lake Erie and Western Railroad Company, a corporation having its principal place of business in the city of Chicago, and which operated a continuous line of road between Chicago and New York. He had not taken out a license for the quarter ending March 31, 1888, as required by the provisions of the aforesaid order. As such agent his duties consisted in soliciting passenger traffic in that city and county over the road he represented. He did not sell tickets to such passengers over that road or any other, but took them to the Central Pacific Railroad Company, where the tickets were sold to them. The only duty he was required to perform for such company was to induce people contemplating taking a trip East to be booked over the line he represented. He neither received nor paid out any money or other valuable consideration on account thereof.

On the 3d of June, 1888, the plaintiff in error was convicted of misdemeanor in the police judge's court of the city and county of San Francisco for violation of the provisions of the aforesaid order, and on the 16th of November of that year, after a motion for a new trial and a motion in arrest of judgment had both been denied, the court sentenced him to pay a fine of twenty dollars, and in default of the payment thereof to imprisonment in the county jail of the city and county until the same should be paid, for a period not exceeding twenty days. Upon appeal to the Superior Court of the city and county of San Francisco that court affirmed the judgment below, and this writ of error was then sued out.

Mr. Joseph P. Kelly for plaintiff in error.

Mr. James D. Page for defendant in error.

The solicitation of business under the circumstances cannot be interstate commerce, as it relates to something wholly outside of the State in which solicitation is made, and has not for an end the introduction of anything into the State. In that

Argument for Defendant in Error.

respect this case differs from Robbins v. Shelby County Taxing District, 120 U. S. 489.

The municipal license tax sought to be recovered by this action is not a tax upon the business of the railroad represented, but a license tax for the privilege of maintaining an agency in the city of San Francisco. There is an essential difference between this case and that of Leloup v. Port of Mobile, 127 U. S. 640. It comes directly within the principles decided by the Supreme Court of Pennsylvaņia in Norfolk & Western Railroad v. Pennsylvania, 114 Penn. St. 256. See also Pembina Mining Co. v. Pennsylvania, 125 U. S. 181; Paul v. Virginia, 8 Wall. 168 ; and Smith v. Alabama, 124 U. S. 465.

In the drummers' cases the connection of the avocation with interstate commerce is immediate. Goods are to be sent to the State where the drummer is working from another State. He secures orders for them to be sent, i.e., arranges the contract for sending them. The sending is commerce, interstate commerce,

and the contract to send is immediately connected with this commerce and essential to its existence; for one of the two States to prevent the contract would be to prevent the commerce.

But the railroad here in question is operated wholly between two States distant from California. The commerce which it does is exclusively between those distant States namely, transporting persons and goods between them.

A man in California soliciting business for such a road is at best very remotely connected with interstate commerce, and to hinder his work cannot directly binder the interstate commerce of the road. That commerce is elsewhere, and his business is not essential to its existence, but only very remotely, if at all accessory to its prosperity. The constitutional provision was intended to remedy an unfortunate condition of things, in which States to or through which commerce passed or would pass subjected that commerce to burdens and hindrances. The sweeping away of these burdens and hindrances was the object to be effected, and the Constitution should not be construed to restrict the rights of the States further than is necessary to get rid of substantial hindrances to commerce.

Opinion of the Court.

Matters which, in a very remote degree, and in a State in which the commerce itself does not go, affect not the freedom of the commerce but its volume, should be regarded as still within the control of each State. California can levy no prohibitive tax in this case, for the commerce is wholly without California and beyond her reach. Neither can she “regulate” it, for the same reason. Neither can she interfere with any of the usual means and instruments of carrying on such a commerce as a railroad carries on, still for the same reason. A person distant from the road, soliciting others to travel over it when they get to it, is not one of the usual — certainly not one of the necessary — instruments of a railroad company's commerce. The essential commerce is the carrying; whereas this defendant does none of the carrying nor even of the contracting to carry – he is a mere advertisement.

It is not claimed that the ordinance providing for a license from railway agencies conflicts with the laws of the State of California, nor that it is an unwarrantable exercise of police power on the part of the board of supervisors, except in so far as it is claimed that it conflicts with the Constitution of the United States and the laws of Congress.

I respectfully submit that the right sought to be enforced is a proper one, and that under the cases cited there is no interference with commerce nor interstate commerce in so doing.

MR. JUSTICE LAMAR, after stating the case as above reported, delivered the opinion of the court.

There are three assignments of error which are reducible to the single proposition that the order under which the plaintiff in error was convicted is repugnant to clause 3 of section 8, article 1, of the Constitution of the United States, commonly known as the "commerce clause" of the Constitution, in that it imposes a tax upon interstate commerce, and that therefore the court below erred in not so deciding and in rendering judgment against the plaintiff in error.

This proposition presents the only question in the case, and if it appears from this record that the business in which the

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