Thornton v. Schreiber - 124 U.S. 612 (1888)
U.S. Supreme Court
Thornton v. Schreiber, 124 U.S. 612 (1888)
Thornton v. Schreiber
Argued January 19-20, 1888
Decided February 13, 1888
124 U.S. 612
An employee of a business house who, having a principal place in the establishment, is entrusted by his employers under their direction and on their behalf with the custody and possession, but in a building occupied by them and subject to their control, of printed copies of a copyrighted photograph, printed in violation of the provisions of Rev.Stat. § 4965, has not such possession of them as will entitle the proprietor of the copyright to proceed against him for a forfeiture of one dollar for every sheet under that section.
The words "found in his possession" in § 4965 of the Revised Statutes do not relate to the finding of the jury that the articles in question were in the defendant's possession, but require that there should be a time before the cause of action accrues at which they are found in his possession. Whether the provision in Rev.Stat. § 4965 that one-half of the profit shall go "to the proprietor and the other half to the use of the United States" does not relate solely to the "case of a painting, statue, or statuary," quaere.
The case is stated in the opinion of the Court.