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Colonial Cases

Minor Cases 1878

The North China Herald, 3 January 1878

LAW REPORTS.

CIVIL SUMMARY COURT.

Shanghai, 28th Dec.

Before R. A. MOWAT, Esq.

YA-SING v. THOMAS FURNEAUX.

   This was a claim for $32 for goods supplied.

   Defendant, who was formerly second officer of the schooner Lulu, admitted the debt, but said he was unable to pay it at present.

   Judgment was entered for the amount claimed, with costs.

 

The North China Herald, 17 January 1878

SUMMARYOF NEWS.

   Judgment has been delivered by the hon. G. Wiley Wells, United States Consul-General, in the case of the Rev. J. S. Roberts v. Captain R. Delano, of the American ship Golden State.  It will be remembered that plaintiff claimed $200, damage to a consignment of goods brought for him by the Golden State, in the winter of 1874-75, from New York.  Defendant pleaded that the damage arose from stress of weather, and that, therefore, he was exempt from liability.  The Court held that the damage arose, not from bad weather, but from improper stowage of the goods, and accordingly gave a verdict for $150 and the costs.

 

The North China Herald, 17 January 1878

   We print, elsewhere, the minutes of an arbitration case decided last week before H.M Vice-Consul, Mr. C. T. Gardner.  The case is simply this.

   On the 29th October last the steamer Hanyang, owned by Mr. McBain but worked by the China Merchants' Steamer Co. - collided with a junk while hauling alongside the jetty.  It was a little complicated as the (English) owner of the steamer is absent, while she is chartered to a Chinese Company, and the captain is a Dane.  The petitioners first appealed to the Mixed Court, believing that the steamer belonged to the company under which she is running - and it is significant of the power of the Company that the magistrate, Chen, was very much afraid to interfere while under the same persuasion; the Mangers of the Company repudiating all responsibility.  The discovery, however, that the steamer was English-owned removed all difficulty; for Mr. McBain, directly he heard of the affair, gave the petitioner every facility for prosecuting the claim by asking Mr. Gardner to act as arbitrator. N The latter gentleman asked the assistance of Lieut. Fane, R.N., and of the magistrate of the Mixed Court, who readily gave it.  The conclusion arrived at is that the accident was unavoidable, and that the steamer shall pay $50 solatium to the owner of the junk.

 

The North China Herald, 31 January 1878

LAW REPORTS.

H.B.M.'s SUPREME COURT.

Shanghai, 30th Jan.

Before R. A. MOWAT, Esq. Acting Judge.

H. EVANS & CO. v. E. PALLISTER.

   This was an action to recover $120 for goods supplied.

   Defendant did not appear.  The case was not  originally put down for hearing to-day, and there was doubt as to whether he had been officially informed of the alteration; but plaintiff and his clerk both expressed their belief that defendant did know of the altered time of hearing, and explained that he had suggested that an arrangement should be made without coming to Court.

   His LORDSHIP said he would now hear the case, but if it appeared that defendant had not as a fact received the notice of the alteration in the day of hearing, plaintiff would have to come again to Court and the case would be reheard.

   Plaintiff deposed that he had supplied defendant with goods to the implant of the claim, and that he had not received payment.  He had frequently demanded payment, but without success.

   His Lordship said he would enter judgment for the amount claimed with costs.

 

The North China Herald, 14 February 1878

CIVIL SUMMARY COURT.

Shanghai, 8th Feb.

Before R. A. MOWAT, Esq.

R. J. CAIN v. H. D. WOOLFE.

   Plaintiff, who belongs to the steamer Hankow, sued to recover $24.40 value of some tea he procured for defendant at Hankow, in May or June last, and which had not been paid for, although defendant had made repeated promises to pay.

   Defendant appeared, and admitted the debt.

   His HONOUR asked defendant when he could pay the money?

   Defendant replied that as soon as he had satisfied a previous judgment, he would take this one in its turn.

   In answer to further questions as to what property he possessed, defendant said he had some goods under lien to the Chartered Mercantile Bank, which they had allowed him to sell; and as soon as he realised the profits, her would be in a better position to pay.

   The USHER informed the Court that he believed those goods were now in the hands of Messrs. Frazar and Co.

   Defendant said that Head-constable Barnes knew all about his ownership of those goods, and also as to their being now in the hands of Messrs. Frazar and Co.  With respect to the tea for which he was now sued, he procured it for another person, who was now in London, and who had paid him only half the money for it.

   Plaintiff asked why, if defendant found any difficulty in obtaining payment for the tea, he did not return it, ad he (plaintiff) might have disposed of it elsewhere?

   Defendant replied that he had hoped to obtain the money.

   His HONOUR - Did you pay the plaintiff the half - the money you received?

   Defendant. - No, I did not.

   His HONOUR said that was very bad, and but little short of dishonesty.  What goods were those defendant spoke of?

   Defendant said they were harness and leather, and had been put into the hands of Messrs. Frazar and Co. for realization.

   His HONOUR said all he could do in the case was to enter judgment for plaintiff, for the amount claimed with $3 costs.  Plaintiff's best course would be to go and enquire about the goods defendant said were his, and endeavour to arrange that on their being sold, any surplus after the charges upon the were defrayed, should not be handed over to defendant, but held towards satisfying plaintiff's claim.

 

The North China Herald, 14 February 1878

NAVAL COURT.

Amoy, 15th Jan.

Before GEO. PHILLIPS, President; C. HEYWARD, Nav.-Lieut. H.M.S. Magpie; ROBERT FIRTH, Master, barque Rachel; R. H. ABBOTT, Master, barque Parmenio.

   A Naval Court was held at the British Consulate on the 15th January, to investigate the circumstances under which the barque Novelty, of Sydney, was wrecked near the Keelung, Formosa.  The following is the finding of the Court.

That the Court is of opinion that when the master lost his kedge anchor and found the ship drifting on to the shore, he should have at once anchored with the bower, and paid out a good length of cable; instead of waiting, as he did, until he was sufficiently close to the rocks and unable to veer sufficient chain to keep her from dragging.

   The Court hereby expresses its dissatisfaction at the want of a good hawser on board the vessel, as, id she had been provided with one, she might have been warped out clear of danger.

   Taking into consideration that the master stayed by the ship as long as there was a chance of saving her and her cargo, his certificate is hereby returned to him.

That the clerk of the Court be allowed a fee of £2, and that a similar fee be paid to the Nautical Assessors for their attendance.

 

The North China Herald, 20 April 1878

   The Malay, Batchow, recently tried at the Supreme Court and found guilty of wounding Alexander Brash, with intent to do him grievous bodily harm, and upon whom  sentenced was deferred, has been sentenced to two years' imprisonment, to pay the costs of prosecution as far as his wages will allow, and to be deported on expiry of  sentence.

 

The North China Herald, 25 May 1878

U.S. CONSULATE-GENERAL.

Shanghai, 18th May.

Before JULIUS SAHEL, Esq., Vice-Consul-General and Judge of the court, and J. O. FULLER and E. W. RICE, Assessors.

Messrs. R. MACKENZIE & Co. v. E.  M. SMITH.

   This was an action to recover Tls. 4,500 on a promissory note.

   Plaintiff produced the promissory note signed by the defendant, together with two other notes from him, acknowledging his indebtedness and applications for payment.

   Defendant acknowledged the note, but explained that plaintiff was in error, as the goods for which he gave the note, were purchased at six months' credit, and it was only a question of waiting until the end of June.

   The COURT  said the note spoke for itself, and it was payable on the 1st May.

   There was no further evidence adduced,  and the Court took a recess to consider its decision.  After an absence of about five minutes, judgment was given as follows:

   This is an action to recover an amount due and remaining unpaid on a certain promissory note given by defendant to plaintiff.  Defendant acknowledges the execution of said nitre, and the Court, therefore, orders that judgment be entered for the plaintiff for Tls. 4,500, the value of the promissory note, with interest and costs.

 

The North China Herald, 13 July 1878

SUMMARY OF NEWS.

T.  W. Eckfeldt, who was on the 16th May, 1876, convicted in the Court of the U.S. Consulate-General at Shanghai, of robbing his employers, Messrs. Russell and Co., and sentenced to three years' imprisonment, has been pardoned by the President.  The papers arrived on Thursday night, by the American mail.

 

The North China Herald, 7 November 1878

UNITED STATES CONSULATE GENERAL.

Shanghai, 1st Nov., 1878

Before DAVID H. BAILEY, Esq., U.S. Consul General.

KWAN AN-NAN v. JOHN E. ROBERTSON.

Charge of Assault.

   Complainant, a Chinaman, cook of the American ship Quickstep, charged the first officer of that vessel with an assault of which he b ore unmistakable evidence of about the head and face.  He stated that defendant had taken a revolver from his galley, and on his warning defendant for having done so, received a beating.  Two of the crew were brought forward as witnesses of the assault, but it took place in the galley where no one saw it.  Defendant admitted that he had committed the assault, but affirmed that complainant had seized a knife, wherewith to attack him, also that he had taken possession of the revolver by the captain's orders, because it was loaded.  Bedsides, he stated he had reason to fear that the complainant intended to kill him, having threatened to do so in the presence of Mrs. Fake, wife of the Capgtain.

   Mr. BAILEY very considerately, retired from the Court, and took the lady's evidence in Chambers in the presence of her husband and complainant.  On re-appearing in Court, Mr. Bailey dismissed the case, having had ample evidence that the defendant had reason to apprehend murder from complainant.

 

Daily Alta California, 3 December 1878

A Statement.

Alexander Johnson, first mate of the British ship Simla, informs us that the British Consular Court in the case of that vessel, did not withdraw the certificates of himself and Hugh Kemp, second mate, and the Court censured all the officers.  He and Kemp received their full wages and a discharge from the ship.

 

The North China Herald, 14 December 1878

CIVIL SUMMARY COURT.

Shanghai, 11th Dec.

Before R. A. MOWAT, Esq.

AH-CHIN v. JAMES HALY.

   This was an action to recover $64 for goods sold and delivered by the plaintiff, who is a tailor, &c., in Hongkew.

   Defendant did not appear, and personal service of the summons was proved by the Usher.

   It was explained that the defendant belonged to the curfew of the Costa Rica barque Martha, which has been arrested by the Court of the United States Consulate General for debt and is advertised to be sold.  The crew have been paid off at their various Consulates, and the day the summons was issued defendant received his wages at H.H.'s Shipping Office, and, after paying his bill at the Sailors' Home, he had a balance of over $60.

   His HONOUR gave judgment for the amount claimed with costs, and ordered a judgment summons to be issued forthwith.

 

The North China Herald, 14 December 1878

CIVIL SUMMARY COURT.

Shanghai, 11th Dec.

Before R. A. MOWAT, Esq.

SUI-KOW v. J.  A. TAYLOR.

   Defendant is the manager of the Chartered Mercantile Bank of India, London and China, and plaintiff, who was formerly in his service as cook, sought to recover $10, wages he alleged to be due.   Plaintiff deposed that he entered the defendant's service on the 1st May last, his wages being fixed at $10 per month.  St the end of June he asked for an advance of wages, and defendant agreed to pay him $12 per month, and he was afterwards paid at that rate.  At the end of November, he was dismissed and paid off with $2; and he now claimed $10 as the balance of his wages for that month.

   Defendant explained that he agreed at first to pay the plaintiff $10 per month wages, and that at the end of his second month's service he voluntarily promised him a "cunshaw" of $2 a month on condition that he attended well to his duties and did no squeezing.  Plaintiff had not fulfilled these conditions, and therefore he had deducted the "cumshaws" from his last month's wages, which still gave him $70 for his seven month's service.

   His HONOUR considered that the $2 was in effect added to plaintiff's wages, and not given as a "cumshaw;" but even if it were treated as such, defendant could not get back the earlier sums - at the most he could only stop that for the month of November.  He (His Honour) would enter up judgment for the amount claimed with costs, and advised the defendant not to take any proceedings in the Mixed Court of the kind he talked of.

AH-CHIN v. JAMES HALY.

   This was an action to recover $64 for goods sold and delivered by the plaintiff, who is a tailor, &c., in Hongkew.

   Defendant did not appear, and personal service of the summons was proved by the Usher.

   It was explained that the defendant belonged to the curfew of the Costa Rica barque Martha, which has been arrested by the Court of the United States Consulate General for debt and is advertised to be sold.  The crew have been paid off at their various Consulates, and the day the summons was issued defendant received his wages at H.H.'s Shipping Office, and, after paying his bill at the Sailors' Home, he had a balance of over $60.

   His HONOUR gave judgment for the amount claimed with costs, and ordered a judgment summons to be issued forthwith.

Published by Centre for Comparative Law, History and Governance at Macquarie Law School