Manigault v. Springs

Court Documents

United States Supreme Court

199 U.S. 473

Manigault  v.  Springs

 Argued: November 2, 1905. --- Decided: December 4, 1905

This was a bill in equity filed March 4, 1903, by Manigault, to enjoin the damming or otherwise obstructing Kinloch creek, in the county of Georgetown, South Carolina. A demurrer to the bill was sustained, and the bill subsequently dismissed. See 123 Fed. 707.

It seems that, in 1898, the plaintiff and the two defendants, Springs and Lachicotte, together with one Ford, were adjoining riparian owners on the Santee river, at the mouth of Kinloch creek. The creek furnished access as a highway to all the proprietors on its banks. At that time the defendants constructed a dam across the creek for their own purposes. Objection was made to this by plaintiff and by Ford as an interference with their rights of passage and irrigation. Plaintiff also complained that the effect was to compel him to raise the dikes around his lands. As a result of long negotiations, a compromise was effected and a contract entered into in August, 1898, between defendants under the name of S. M. Ward & Company, of the first part, and plaintiff and Ford, of the second part, whereby it was agreed that the obstructions should continue until December 31 of that year, when they should be removed, so as to give the parties complaining a clear passage through the creek.

This removal was effected and matters allowed to remain as they were until 1903, when the general assembly of the state passed an act reciting the necessity of draining the lowlands on the Santee river, whereby their taxable value would be greatly enhanced. Authority was given to the defendants by name to erect and maintain a dam across Kinloch creek, with a proviso that they should be liable for all such damages as might be established in any court of competent jurisdiction by any landowner claiming that his land had been damaged by reason of the erection of the dam.

Mr. Henry A. M. Smith for appellant.

[Argument of Counsel from pages 474-477 intentionally omitted]

Mr. Theodore G. Barker for appellees.

Statement by Mr. Justice Brown:

Mr. Justice Brown 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).