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The Green Bag

have to submit to its enforcement. The railroad companies refused to submit without a struggle in the courts. The case is found in the 35 Wis. 425, and is there entitled The Attorney-General v. The Chicago 6" Northwestern Railway Company. A similar action was pend ing against the Chicago, Milwaukee and St. Paul Railway Company, and both cases were considered as one action as the identical legal questions were in volved in them. Substantially the same questions were raised in the case of Peik v. Chicago & Northwestern Railway Company and reported in the 94 U. S. Reports, on page 164. It may be said, however, that the opinion of Chief Jus tice Ryan in the Wisconsin court is far more able and exhaustive than is the opinion of the Supreme Court of the United States. Indeed, it may be said of Justice Ryan's opinion that he left nothing more to be said upon the subject of which it treats. It at once placed its author in the front rank of the great American jurists of the country. The legal questions considered by the Wisconsin court were numerous, were vital and were vastly important to the material interests of the population of the state. They included the original jurisdiction of the Supreme Court and its exercise in injunctional proceedings; the legislative regulation of railroad tolls and the extent of its power to alter railroad charters and limit charges under the provisions of the Constitution; in formations by the Attorney-General in volving new questions of practice. All of these matters were brought to the professional attention of Mr. Sloan, who was the Assistant Attorney-General at the time. And how well he acquitted himself in that litigation will appear, in a small way, in what follows. His argu ments in that contest are spoken of by those who heard the case before the

court as among the ablest ever made by any lawyer in the Wect. In this case, Mr. Sloan was very in sistent in his claim that the Supreme Court has original jurisdiction in equity to the extent of issuing writs of injunc tion to restrain the commission of unlaw ful acts under sec. 3 of Art. VII of the Constitution. He cited a number of cases in our state court which adhere to this view. But the decisions in other state courts were also cited to show the same view. This he follows with the statement that courts of equity can re strain by injunction a corporation from exceeding its corporate powers, and if the exercise of the usurped power causes special injury to the property or rights of an individual, he can maintain a suit in equity to enjoin the exercise of such power. These propositions he forti fies with well-considered authorities. To the suggestion that there is a remedy at law in the instant case he answers as follows: "The information in the nature of quo warranto to forfeit the charter of a corporation is in the nature of punish ment, and the proceeding was formerly regarded as strictly criminal, and is still quasi criminal. But the remedy by injunction is for the prevention of in jury, and not for punishment. The ground of the application is not that the act is crime, but that it occasions irreparable injury to several persons. The defendants, in order to succeed, must establish the principle that be cause the act is crime it is entitled to favor and protestation in a court of equity." See also Attorney-General v. Cleaver, 18 Ves. 214. Mr. Sloan argues exhaustively and quotes authorities without number to show that the instant case is properly before the right court and that the correct proceeding is now seeking adjudication. Discussing the validity of the law of