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Opinion of the Court.

of itself amount to a delivery of the cotton to the steamship company, constructive or otherwise. Nor was it a delivery on the steamship's pier, as between the shipper and the railway company, within the language of clause twelve, and for the reasons herein stated the notice to the steamship company did not relieve the railway carrier from liability.

The uncontradicted evidence shows that the cotton came to the railway pier under these circumstances: The pier was built by the railway company and was in its sole and absolute control and possession. Not a bale of cotton could be taken from it without the action of that company; its own watchmen were in charge of the pier at all times, and when a steamship came to the pier it was only under a permit or an order from an officer of the railway company that the cotton was taken. It was pointed out by the servants of the railway company and, within the custom of the port of New Orleans, it had to be brought within the reach of the ship’s tackle before the ship was called upon to take it. The expression, “ship’s tackle,” ineans “where the ship's ropes can get on to it so that the ship’s winches can pull the cotton in.” The custom was that after a steamship company returned the transfer sheets which had been sent it by the railway company, an order was made out by the railway officials on the Westwego office of the defendant, to deliver to the steamship company's agents such cotton as was ordered. It does not appear that any such order was given. Prior to the time of the arrival of the vessel which was to take the cotton and the arrival of the stevedores, the steamship company had no charge of any of the cotton on the pier. There was no particular spot on the pier at which, if cotton were there deposited, it was understood between defendant and the steamship companies to have been deposited in the care, control or possession of any of such companies, but, on the contrary, the whole pier was covered by cotton destined indiscriminately for transportation to different European ports by different lines of steamers, not one of which could take a bale of cotton away without the order of the railway company.

Before the ship took the cotton it gave a mate's receipt for it, although sometimes the receipt would not come as soon as

Opinion of the Court.

that, and the cotton would be delivered before the receipt was given. The cotton which came in on the cars of the defendant was placed all along the pier, and that which was destined for any particular company had to be pointed out and selected from a large mass of cotton on the pier. The railway company had contracts with various steamship companies; with the West India and Pacific, the French line, the lines for which Miller & Company were agents, the Hamburg-American line, and some others, and the cotton for all these various lines was unloaded upon this pier of the railway company and was distributed all over the wharf, so that, when a steamship came to the dock upon which the cotton was, that which was intended for the particular steamship then at the pier would be brought out to it or within reach of its tackle by the railway employés, depending upon where the cotton was and how far away from the ship, and it was understood between the steamship and railway companies that the railway company would get out the cotton when necessary to do it, and by getting out the cotton was meant dragging it from where it was stored on the wharf out in front or near enough in front to enable the steamship people to get it without having to go around through the bales of cotton.

The connection of the steamship companies with the transportation of the cotton was the subject of special contracts between those companies and the railway company. The initiation would be an agreement between a steamsbip company and the railway company for a certain charge for freight across

for a stated amount of cotton from New Orleans to Liverpool or Bremen, or whatever other foreign port it might be, and no particú ir cotton was specified. Having obtained this agreement as to price and number of bales, the railway company would then agree with the shipper in Texas for a through rate froin the point in Texas at which the cotton was to be taken to the port abroad, and it would then give a bill of lading such as was given in evidence in this case, providing for the through rate and the liabilities of the various carriers by rail and by sea; but it was only after an arrangement bad been made and a contract entered into between the railway and a

Opinion of the Court.

steamship company that the latter company would send a steamer to the Westwego pier. The evidence is uncontradicted in regard to what the steamship lines had to do under the agreeinents they had with the defendant; in some cases they were not under any obligation to come to the pier unless the defendant had at least 1500 or 2000 bales of cotton ready for them, while in another case the steamship company which had a contract to take 20,000 bales of cotton from the railway coinpany was not to be called on to go to the wharf unless there were at least five hundred bales ready to deliver to it, and by the bill of lading the railway company inight, under certain contingencies, if it deemed necessary, forward the cotton by some steamer of another line than that mentioned in the bill. The steamship companies took their own time in coming to the Westwego pier for the cotton. If they had no special contract with the railway company, they did not come at all. It was not the case of a regular delivery by the railway company to a connecting carrier at the pier of the latter.

Now upon these facts we regard it as entirely clear that at the time this cotton was lost there had been no delivery, actual or constructive, to the steamship company só as to divest the defendant of its common law liability for the loss of this cotton.

Within clause 12 of this bill of lading there was no delivery of the property by the defendant either to the steamship, her master, agents or servants, or to the steamship company or on the steamship company's pier at the port of New Orleans, even upon the assumption that the pier at Westwego was the point agreed upon between the railway and the steamship companies where the delivery of the cotton was to be made when it was delivered. Ilow can it be said that there was a delivery to this steamship company upon the facts above detailed when, by agreement between the parties, the company was not to take the property until it sent a steamship to the pier for that purpose? Until it was delivered to it at the steamer's side the steamer had neither possession nor control over it. By the bill of lading the defendant could in certain contingencies and at any time before delivery to the ship send the cotton by another

Opinion of the Court.

steamer. Until the ship did come to the pier, there can be no question of actual delivery in this case.

Nor does the notification to the steamship company that there was cotton at the pier a waiting or ready for delivery to it, make such notification a constructive delivery of the cotton and terminate the liability of the railway coinpany. Ilere was a pier containing thousands of bales of cotton, destined to various European ports, and by various lines of steamers, with a special right to the railway company, mentioned in clause 11, to send the cotton mentioned in any particular bill of lading by a steamer of a line other than the one mentioned in the bill, and no obligation of the steamship company to send for the cotton until there was a quantity of 500 bales in some cases, and in others until there were fronı 1500 to 2000 bales ready for the particular steainer. A notification to a steamship coinpany by means of a "transfer sheet,” which was taken to be a notice that there was cotton at the pier ready for delivery to a steamer when it caine, did not necessarily take away the right of the railway company to send that cotton by another steamer, and the company which was notified and sent a steamer would have no ground of complaint if, upon the arrival of the steamer at the pier, other cotton consigned to the same port were given it to the same amount. There being only this conditional obligation to send for cotton on the part of the steamship company, and none upon the part of the defendant to at all events deliver the specified cotton to the former, and the steamship company not having sent a ship to the pier, there was no limitation of the defendant's liability wrought by the notification.

Whatever may generally be the effect of a notice to a connecting carrier, upon the question of terminating or altering the liability of a preceding carrier for the goods, it is quite clear that it has no effect in diminishing the liability until actual delivery in a case where the preceding carrier still continues to have full control over the goods and has a choice as between connecting carriers, and may, notwithstanding such general notice, deliver the goods under certain circumstances to another



carrier for further transportation. Until actual delivery in such case, the preceding carrier is not divested of his liability.

The case Pratt v. Railway Company, 95 U. S. 43, and the other cases referred to by counsel in his argument at the bar, have no application in the view we take of the facts. The Pratt case was fully commented upon in Texas &c. Company v. Clayton, 173 U. S. supra, in the course of the opinion of the court, and it seems to be too clear for argument that the case does not justify an inference that the facts which we bave just detailed in regard to this cotton constitute a delivery, either constructive or actual, to the steamship company or to the pier of that coinpany.

We are, therefore, of opinion that the court below did not err in directing a verdict for the plaintiffs for the value of the cotton, and the judgment in their favor is,






No. 49. Argued October 24, 1901.-Decided January 13, 1902.

The trustees of The Sun Association are to be charged with knowledge of

the extent of the power usually exerted by its managing editor, and must be held to have acquiesced in the possession by him of such authority, even though they had not expressly delegated it to him, and he is held to

bave been vested with such power. An authority to charter a yacht for the purpose of collecting news was

clearly within the corporate powers of the association. It is impossible to assume in this case that the relation of The Sun Associa

tion to the hiring of the yacht was simply that of a security for Lord as a hirer of the yacht on his personal account, and the two papers in evidence are in legal effect but one contract, and must be interpreted to

gether. As the trustees of The Sun Association must be presumed to have exercised

a supervision over the business of the corporation, they are to be charged

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