Conro v. Crane (94 U.S. 441)
MOTION to dismiss an appeal from the Circuit Court of the United States for the Northern District of Illinois.
Fox & Howard were adjudged bankrupts by the District Court for the Northern District of Illinois, June 5, 1875. Bradford Hancock was appointed provisional assignee, June 16; and, June 19, an order was entered in the bankruptcy proceedings, directing him to receive bids for the purchase of certain personal property belonging to the estate of the bankrupts, which had come into his possession. Under this order, bids were tendered by various persons, and, among others, one by Jefferson Hodgkins, for $40,000. All were reported by Hancock to the District Court, July 2, with the recommendation that the one of Hodgkins be accepted; and thereupon an order was made that all persons interested show cause by July 9 why this recommendation should not be complied with. Notice of this order was given by mail and publication; and, on the day named, the bid was accepted, the sale approved, and Hancock anthorized, on the receipt of the purchase-money, to execute an appropriate bill of sale, and deliver possession of the property. Hancock again reported, July 12, that, although demanded, the purchase-money had not been paid, and that he had received another bid from Conro & Carkin, the present appellants, for $40,500. He thereupon asked that the order of confirmation to Hodgkins be set aside, the sale revoked, and that he be authorized to sell and deliver the property to Conro & Carkin, at their bid. An order was made to this effect on the same day; and Hancock at once received the purchasemoney, executed a bill of sale, and delivered the property to Conro & Carkin.
On the 18th of August, Hodgkins and Charles S.C.rane, for whom, as is alleged, Hodgkins acted as agent in the purchase, filed their petition in the bankrupt court, asking that the order of July 12 be set aside, and Conro & Carkin, Hanc ck, and the bankrupts be directed to deliver the property to them, and account for the moneys realized by its use. Upon the filing of this petition, a rule was entered, requiring Hancock, Conro & Carkin, and the bankrupts to show cause by Aug. 27 why the order asked for should not be granted. Hancock and Conro & Carkin appeared in obedience to this rule, and answered. The matter was then referred to one of the registers in bankruptcy to take testimony; and, on the 6th of March, the District Court, upon full hearing, dismissed the petition. On the same day, Hodgkins and Crane presented to the circuit judge of the circuit their petition, under sect. 4986, Rev. Stat., for 'the revision and reversal of the action of the District Court sitting as a court of bankruptcy.' The Circuit Court, April 24, after hearing, reversed the order of July 12, and continued that of July 9 in force. The District Court was also directed to order the assignee to execute and deliver to Hodgkins the necessary papers to show title, and to cause the property to be delivered to Hodgkins or Crane. The District Court was also ordered to return to Conro & Carkin, subject to certain specified conditions, the purchase-money paid by them.
From this order an appeal by Conro & Carkin was allowed to this court, which Hodgkins and Crane moved to dismiss for want of jurisdiction.
Mr. P. Phillips and Mr. John S.C.ooper in support of the motion.
Mr. F. H. Kales in opposition thereto.
MR. CHIEF JUSTICE WAITE delivered the opinion of the court.