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Page:Harvard Law Review Volume 1.djvu/413

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RECENT CASES.

Agency—Authority of Town Treasurer.—The plaintiff loaned money to the defendant town, and took certain notes from its treasurer, which he had authority to give. A statute was then passed taking from towns the power to borrow money except for certain purposes, which do not cover this case. The treasurer then gave the plaintiff a new note for the amount of the old ones. Held, the plaintiff cannot recover, since the new note was a new contract which the town at that time had no right to make; and, further, the treasurer had no authority to renew a note which he had given with full authority. Abbott v. North Andover, 14 N.E. Rep. 754 (Mass.).

Assignment of Unearned Salaries.—A Territorial commissioner of immigration assigned a quarter’s salary before it was due. Held, that the assignment was void as being contrary to public policy. King v. Hawkins, 16 Pac. Rep. 434 (Ariz.).

Bill of Exchange—Bona Fide Purchaser.—The plaintiff drew a sight bill on a party in Wheeling, W. Va., where the defendant bank is located. It was drawn to the order of the Penn Bank. The Penn Bank indorsed it to the defendant bank, with which it kept a reciprocal account of funds arising from collections. The defendant collected the money and put it to the credit of the Penn Bank, after which there was still due from the Penn Bank to the defendant a considerable sum. The Penn Bank failed, and plaintiff sues the defendant in assumpsit on the ground that the bill was left with the Penn Bank simply for collection. Held, he cannot recover. He should have written “For collection” upon the bill in order that defendant should have notice that it was not the bill of the Penn Bank, but of the plaintiff. Carroll v. Exchange Bank, 4 S.E. Rep. 440 (W. Va.).

Carriers—Liability for Personal Baggage only.—The plaintiff bought a ticket of the defendant, and had his valise checked by the baggage-master. The valise contained merchandise and no personal baggage. Held, he cannot recover for the loss of the valise. Blumenthal v. Maine Cent. R. Co., 11 Atl. Rep. 605 (Me.).

Constitutional Law—Act Impairing the Obligation of Contracts.—The act of the legislature of the State of Iowa, which exempts the homestead of a pensioner purchased with pension money from execution upon a debt due before the purchase, is unconstitutional as impairing the obligation of contracts. Two judges dissent. Foster v. Byrne, 35 N.W. Rep. 513 (Iowa).

Constitutional Law—Interstate Commerce.—Writ of habeas corpus by an engineer upon a railroad extending through several States, imprisoned for violation of statutes requiring locomotive engineers in that State to be examined and licensed by a board appointed by the Governor for that purpose. A moderate license fee was exacted. Held, the statute was not unconstitutional on the ground of interfering with interstate commerce, in the absence of congressional legislation upon the subject. The statute was treated as a part of the State law of carriers, affecting commerce only indirectly and remotely. Bradley, J., dissented. Smith v. State of Alabama, U.S. Supreme Court, Jan. 30, 1888, 16 Wash. L. Rep. 101; s. c. 37 Alb. L.J. 172.

Constitutional Law—Police Power—Medical Practice Act.—The certificate of a physician cannot be revoked by a State board under a statute authorizing revocation for unprofessional or dishonorable conduct, because he has advertised. The statute which gives the board such arbitrary power is unconstitutional, for a great variety of reasons. People v. McCoy, 37 Alb. L. J. 113; 20 Chi. Leg. News, 151 (Cook county, Ill.).

Contract—Tender of Performance Unnecessary.—The defendants, before the time for performance, notified the plaintiffs that they would not receive the property contracted for. Held, the plaintiffs may sue at once, and the defendants cannot retract their renunciation of the contract. Windmuller v. Pope, 14 N.E. Rep. 436 (N.Y.).

Curtesy.—The husband is not entitled to curtesy in lands bought with property settled by him upon the wife. Dugger’s Children v. Dugger, 4 S.E. Rep. 171 (Va.). Contra, Seltan v. Seltan, 6 S.W. Rep. 95 (Mo.).