Beverly v. Brooke
ERROR to the circuit court for the district of Columbia.
This suit was instituted by the plaintiff in the circuit court for the county of Alexandria, to recover the value of three slaves hired by the plaintiff to the defendant for a voyage to some part of Europe in the brig Sophila, of which the defendant was master, which slaves escaped from the vessel, and were lost to the owner. The claim was founded on the allegation that the master pursued a different voyage from that for which the slaves were hired, and that to this cause was to be ascribed the loss that had been sustained.
The cause was argued by Mr. Swann, for the plaintiff, and by Mr. Taylor, for the defendant. The latter cited Pothier on Obligations, part 1. c. 2. art. 3. to show that the party was only responsible for the ordinary results of his fault, unaccompanied with fraud,a and contended that the loss of the slaves was not a necessary consequence of the shipmaster's supposed misconduct, but was remote and unforeseen.
Mr. Chief Justice MARSHALL delivered the opinion of the court.