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of the defendant's preceding this were read, which marked his sentiments of propriety, respect and affection for the plaintiff: in one of them he said, “I pray God that the law may bring us together for our mutual comfort;” and it was proved that in a conversation respecting her, he had said, “ She is a pious, God-fearing young woman”—“She is a spiritual and gracious young woman.” On the part of the defendant it was stated, that he was in very narrow circumstances and much involved; his father had a numerous family besides. The salary he enjoyed as a preacher could not exceed 50l. per annum, as he had expended all the money he could raise in
fitting up the chapel. However, .
he abandoned all attempt to throw any imputation on the character of the lady.
The Chief Justice summed up the case, and the jury found a verdict for the plaintiff—damages 150l.
courtT OF KING’s-BENCH, THURSDAY, DEc. 23.
Butcher v. Campbell and others. —This was an action brought by the owner of a fishing smack called the Mercury, against the owners of a West India trading vessel called the Contest, for "running down the plaintiff's ship, whereby she was sunk. The accident took place on the 27th March, 1818, off Fair Lights, -about mine miles from the shore. The master of the smack gave in evidence, that on the morning in question, between eight and nine,
the Mercury, with five men on board, was sailing down the Channel at about two knots an hour, with their sails slack; the wind was strong in the north. He and his crew saw the Contest coming down the Channel with full sail, at the rate of eight knots an hour. They saw the Contest first at a quarter of a mile distant. They hailed her several times before she came upon them. She was bearing down upon them. If there had been any one in the forecastle of the ship he must have heard the hail; no answer was given to it. They did not put the helm of the Mercury up after seeing the Contest. It was up before. They had trawling nets out at the stern. If the crew of the Contest had heard the hail, they might have avoided running on the Mercury. The Contest did not alter her course. The Contest struck the Mercury on the stern and split her; one of her crew was drowned, and another cut in two. The remaining three got on board the Contest. When they got on board there was nobody on deck except the man at the helm. The captain then came from below upon the deck. The master of the smack told him that two of his men were killed. The captain said he was sorry for it, and confessed that it was his fault. He said he had sent down one watch and the other had not come up; they were all at breakfast together. The captain then, at the request of the master of the smack, gave him a letter to the defendants, in which he said that he was sorry for an accident that had happened in his running down a vessel at
eight in the morning; he did not see the vessel that was trawling before them till close upon her, and putting down the helm he ran her down, the wind strong in the north. He also wrote therein that he had sent the letter by one of the crew of the smack, and requested the defendants to make the owners a compensation. This evidence of the master was confirmed by the other two men who were on board at the time of the accident. A person on board another fishing smack, called the Chamelion, swore that there were no persons on the deck of the Contest at the time she passed his vessel; he had taken particular notice in consequence of her having nearly run down his vessel: it was a few minutes before the accident. This evidence was directly contradicted by the captain and four of the crew of the Contest, who swore that there were several persons on deck, including the captain, at the time of the accident. They saw the Mercury a-head steering the same course as the Contest. They did not perceive her trawling-lines, but took her for a 'coasting-vessel. The Contest was sailing from five to six knots an hour. The captain told the helmsman to put the helm up, in order to pass the Mercury to leeward. The Mercury then steered to leeward across the course of the Contest, when the captain ordered the helm of the Contest to be put down, to pass the other vessel to the windward. When the helm was first put up, the Contest was 300 yards off the Mercury. If the helm of the Contest had been put up sooner,
she would have run against two vessels that were off her bows. If the smack had made way, the
' Contest would have passed her.
She was prevented making way by her trawling-lines. The luff of the Contest's lee struck the Mercury's quarter. The trawling-rope took the bow of the Contest; if this had been slacked a foot she would have passed. If the Contest had not gone to the windward when the Mercury did, she must have struck her in the middle. The accident happened at nine; the time of changing the watch . and of breakfast was eight; the watch had been changed an hour. The Lord Chief Justice said it was for the jury to say whether a proper watch was kept by the crew of the defendants' vessel. He observed, that the letter written by the captain at the time of the accident was more likely to contain an accurate account than his testimony given at a remote period. The account there given was consistent with the plaintiff's case. The jury gave a verdict for the Pli: Damages to be ascertained out of court.
HIGH court of ADMIRALTY, DEC. 10.
Sir William Scott gave sentence in the case of a mariner late of the ship Elizabeth; out of which a question arose as to the liability .# owners to the payment of seamen's wages for the full voyage, when from some accident (not of misbehaviour) they shall have been discharged on the
T 2 course,
course and before the completion of the voyage. The seaman who here sued for his wages entered on board the ship Elizabeth at the port of London, bound to Petersburgh and Lisbon ; but when off the coast of Scotland she met with a violent storm, and with o kept the sea. They at lengt worked the vessel into a harbour; and the captain finding that her repairs would necessarily occupy a considerable time, and could not be completed before the ice set in in those latitudes, accepted a proposition which is declared by him to have proceeded from the crew, viz. that he should discharge them at that port, paying them their wages up to the period of their quitting the ship. The men asserted a different tale, pleaded their great exertions for the salvation of the ship and cargo, and made it appear that the offer, to which they reluctantly acceded in preference to the inconvenience and uncertainty of remaining in a remote and unfrequented corner of the island, came from the captain; that they were conveyed to Wiessbay and Elsineur and thence to London, where they arrived in the beginning of the succeeding year. They asserted that wages were due to them up to the time of their return home from London to Lisbon. The marine law of every country was averse to the discharging of seamen at foreign ports. Looking to the evidence on both sides of the case, the Court could not accept this as a voluntary discharge on the part of the men. For how was it proposed? In a form which admit
ted of no probability of refusal; for had they not accepted of it, they must have been left to starve in a foreign country. It would be purely idle, a mere abuse of terms, to call their's a voluntary act. The learned judge then entered into a distinction which it was necessary to draw between the contract of the mariner and that of the master; for it had been said that an analogy existed between them; and that it was no more competent for the master to dismiss the men from the observance of their contract, than it was for the men to discharge the master from the observance of his. But there was this great and material difference in the case: that while the engagement as between the mariner and the owners was a stipulated compensation, pro opere et labore, that between the captain and his owners was for services of a higher order—the guidance and direction of the ship. Then again, the mariner was bound to follow his directions whatever course they might take; that course it was not competent to the mariner in the slightest degree to alter. But the master might alter, re-arrange and totally desert the voyage at first proposed to the mariner, upon whom it would still be incumbent to obey his orders. As to the claim of the full wages of the voyage, no law ever provided, and no court of equity ever could suggest, that that which was a hard misfortune upon the owners should be turned into an unexo advantage to the seamen. or was it ever meant, that in a case where they could be of no service service for a long period to the ship, they should receive the wages of industry to spend in unoccupied idleness, keeping holyday upon the calamity which had befallen the owners. There was one item, however, which he found deducted from the wages said to be due, which he could not allow. The men were charged with their overland passage, in one instance, to their ports of embarkation. Now passage-money it was clearly for the owners to advance, whether the men moved by sea or land: if by land, it was only a change of vehicle; but the same interests were still to be protected. On the whole view of the case, the Court decreed to the parties their wages up to their arrival in England, their passage expenses, and, under the insufficient tender which had been made them, all the expenses of this appeal.
court of KING's-BENCH, MoMDAY, DEC. 20.
Special Jury.—Wallace, Executrix, v. Good.—This action was brought by Mrs. Wallace, as executrix of her late husband, on a policy of insurance underwritten by the defendant on the ship Isabella, at and from Newfoundland to Genoa: the interest was stated to be in Mr. Wallace the deceased; the loss by perils of the seas. The interest was admitted to be as laid; the ship sailed from Newfoundland on the 21st of October, for Genoa, and was lost on her passage. The defence set up was the concealment of a material letter. This
letter was written by the deceased from Newfoundland on the 20th of October, to the plaintiff, his then wife, wherein he informed her that the ship in question was nearly loaded. This letter was received by the plaintiff about the 10th of December. The plaintiff resided at Workington, and at the end of January in the following year she gave orders to an insurance-broker to effect the insurance, which was done accordingly. The broker swore, that the average voyage from Newfoundland to Genoa was three months; and the course of the post from Genoa to London was three weeks or a month. At the time he effected the policy he knew of the receipt of the letter by the plaintiff, but had never seen it. At that time he had no suspicion of the ship being lost, nor an knowledge of her having i. The letter was not shown to the underwriters. The defendant called a merchant who had been some years in the habit of trading to Newfoundland. He swore, that the average voyage from Newfoundland to Genoa in the month of October was about a month; he had rarely known it exceed 35 days; it was often done in 25 days. He stated that the course of post from Genoa to London was 12 days on the average; that if he had seen the letter dated the 20th of October, from St. John's, Newfoundland, stating the ship to be nearly loaded, he should have concluded that she must be out of port in three or four days; the port lies near the ocean, and a fair wind of half an hour will carry carry out a vessel. In January following he should certainly have considered her out of time, and would not have underwritten the policy at any premium.
Mr. Pitcairn, an insurancebroker, proved that in November he had done policies on the Isabella at the usual premium. On the 19th of January following he received orders from #. to effect further insurances. At this time he was aware that the ship had sailed on the 21st of October, which circumstance he communicated to the underwriters, who, in consequence, demanded from 25l. to 35l. per cent. premium. He stated the average voyage from Newfoundland to Genoa to be 35 days. ~
The lord chief justice told the i. that there did not seem to 2e any fraud on the part of the po in concealing the letter, ut that made no difference: if the letter were material, the plaintiff could not recover, whether the concealment arose from ill-design or ignorance. It was for them to consider whether the letter were material or not. He then recapitulated the evidence, and the jury gave a verdict for the defendant.
court of cHANCERY, Dec. 23.
Curtis v. Kingdom.—The Attorney General this day moved to dissolve an injunction which had been obtained by the plaintiff, who stated himself to be the author of an Account of the Colon of the Cape of Good Hope, wit a view to the information of emi
grants, and who complained that the defendant, in a publication on America and the British colonies, had pirated his work. The learned counsel contended, that as the plaintiff had compiled his work from other authors, it was not to be considered such an original work as the Court would protect, and even supposing it were such, yet that the defendant was as much at liberty to compile from those authors as the plaintiff; and that, in fact, the defendant had compiled from those authors, and had not copied from the plaintiff's work. Mr. Horne followed on the same side, distinguishing this case from those that had been previously decided, and pointing out the difference between the works themselves. The defendant's work was published at half-a-guinea, and contained the comparative merits of the various points of emigration; while the plaintiff's, published at a less price, contained only information relating to the Cape. Mr. Pemberton, also for the defendant, contended that the plaintiff’s work not having been entered at Stationers'-hall was not protected by the statute ; and to show the different nature of the works, he pointed out the opposite conclusions to which the authors had arrived. The plaintiff stated that he sat down to his task with considerable prejudices against the Cape as a point of emigration, but had risen from it with very different impressions. The defendant, on the contrary, having himself entertained some intention of emigrating, after weighing the various climes of i. the