Elastic Fabrics Company v. Smith

Court Documents

United States Supreme Court

100 U.S. 110

Elastic Fabrics Company  v.  Smith

APPEAL from the Circuit Court of the United States for the District of Massachusetts.

This is a bill in equity, filed Nov. 19, 1868, by William Smith against the Glendale Elastic Fabrics Company, wherein he alleges that he is the original and first inventor of certain new and useful improvements in corded and elastic fabrics, for which letters-patent of the United States No. 9653, dated April 5, 1853, were, in due form, issued to him; that the letters, after they were extended, March 28, 1867, for seven years, were finally reissued in three parts,-reissue No. 2848, Jan. 14, 1868, division A, for improvements in weaving; reissue 3014, June 30, 1868, division B, for improvements in woven fabrics; and reissue No. 2844, Jan. 14, 1868, division C, for improvements in looms for weaving; that the company has infringed the rights secured to him by divisions A and C. He therefore prays for an injunction and an account.

The company denies the allegations of the bill as to novelty and infringement, and claims that the reissues were illegal.

Smith, Jan. 22, 1870, filed in the Patent Office a disclaimer alleging that the specifications and claims of division B are too broad, and include that whereof he is not the inventor.

The court below, on the cause being set down for hearing, adjudged that the letters as reissued in division A and division C were valid; that Smith was the original and first inventor of the improvements therein described; that he recover of the company the profits received or made by it from the use, manufacture, or sale of the patented improvement; that a master take and report an account of such profits; and that an injunction be awarded.

The master reported that the company had made no profits, and the court, Jan. 27, 1876, passed a decree against the company for costs of suit. The company thereupon appealed.

Mr. Benjamin Dean for the appellant.

Mr. R. P. Lowe for the appellee.

MR. CHIEF JUSTICE WAITE delivered the opinion of the court.


This work is in the public domain in the United States because it is a work of the United States federal government (see 17 U.S.C. 105).