Thompson v. Perrine
ERROR to the Circuit Court of the United States for the Southern District of New York:
This action was commenced on the first day of May, 1876, by Perrine, against the town of Thompson, a municipal corporation in Sullivan County, New York, for the amount of coupons attached to certain bonds, signed by G. M. Benedict, N. S. Hamilton, and W. H. Cady, county commissioners, and issued by them in the name of the town under date of May 1, 1869. They were purchased by him of Gulick & Van Kleeck, July 20, 1875, he paying cash therefor. Each bond is payable to bearer on the 1st of March, 1899. It recites that it 'is a valid security, being issued by virtue of an act entitled 'An Act to authorize certain towns in the counties of Sullivan and Orange to issue bonds and take stock in any company now organized, or that may hereafter be organized within three years after the passage of this act, for the purpose of building a railroad from the village of Monticello in the county of Sullivan through the towns of Thompson and Forestburgh in said county, and the town of Deerpark in the county of Orange, to Port Jervis, Orange County,' passed May 4, 1868, and of the act amendatory thereof, passed April 1, 1869.' And that the pom ise to pay that sum is 'by virtue and in pursuance of the acts above entitled and referred to, and for value received in the stock of the Monticello and Port Jervis Railway Company.'
Those acts authorized the commissioners who might be appointed, in the mode therein prescribed, on behalf of any town along the route of the proposed road from Monticello to Port Jervis, to borrow, on its credit, such sums of money, not exceeding thirty-three per cent of the valuation of the town, to be ascertained by its assessment rolls for 1867, for a term not exceeding thirty years, at not exceeding seven per cent interest per annum, and 'to execute bonds therefor under their hands and seals,'-such debt not, however, to be contracted, and such bonds not to be issued, until there was obtained the written consent of the majority of the taxpayers, appearing upon the last assessment roll, as shall represent a majority of the taxable property, not including lands owned by non-residents; nor until a certain amount of the capital stock of the company had been subscribed in good faith, and paid, by individuals or corporations. The statute required the fact that the persons so consenting represented the proper number of taxpayers, should be supported by the affidavit of one of the town assessors or the town clerk,-the consent and the affidavit to be filed in the offices of the county and town clerks respectively, a certified copy whereof 'shall be evidence of the facts therein contained and certified in any court of this [that] State, and before any judge or justice thereof.'