Mammoth Mining Co. v. Salt Lake Foundry - 151 U.S. 447 (1894)
U.S. Supreme Court
Mammoth Mining Co. v. Salt Lake Foundry, 151 U.S. 447 (1894)
Mammoth Mining Company v. Salt Lake
Foundry and Machine Company
Submitted December 21, 1893
Decided January 29, 1894
151 U.S. 447
When the Supreme Court of a territory, in a suit in the nature of an equity suit, determines that the findings of the trial court were justified by the evidence, this Court is limited to the inquiry whether the decree can be sustained on those findings, and cannot enter into a consideration of the evidence.
The admission of evidence, under exceptions, complained of did not constitute reversible error.
Taylor and another brought suit against the Mammoth Mining Company in the District Court of the First Judicial District of Utah Territory to foreclose a mechanic's lien under the statute of Utah in that behalf, and the Salt Lake Foundry & Machine Company, having been made a party defendant, filed its cross-complaint therein against its codefendant, the Mammoth Mining Company, for the enforcement of a similar lien for materials furnished and work done in and about the construction of certain buildings of the mining company, and situated on its land and premises. The Mammoth Mining Company did not deny that the materials were furnished and the work done, but insisted that this was not under any contract between it and the foundry company, or at its request. The cause was heard by the court without a jury, which made the following findings of fact and conclusions of law:
"1. That at all the times hereinafter stated the said Salt Lake Foundry and Machine Company and the said Mammoth Mining Company were corporations, organized and existing under the laws of Utah Territory."
"2. That on the ___ day of January, A.D. 1883, the said Salt Lake Foundry and Machine Company contracted with the said Mammoth Mining Company, through its agents, to furnish to
said Mammoth Mining Company castings, to construct and repair machinery at current prices, and to do other work within the scope of said machine company's business, all of which was to be used and was used by the said mining company in the erection and construction of the refineries, mills, brick kilns, and smelters of the said defendant mining company, which said refineries, mills, brick kilns, and smelters were situate upon the southeast quarter of the northeast quarter of the southeast quarter of § twenty-one (21), and the northwest quarter of section twenty-two (22), in township eleven (11) south, of range three (3) west of Salt Lake meridian, in Juab County, Utah."
"3. That, in pursuance of said contract, the said foundry and machine company from time to time from ___ day of January, A.D. 1883, until the 26th day of March, A.D. 1883, furnished castings, made and repaired machinery, worked for and furnished material to the said Mammoth Mining Company to be used in the construction of the buildings, etc., above referred to at the special instance and request of said company."
"4. That the total value of the materials furnished and work done so as aforesaid was thirty-six hundred and six and 4/100 dollars at the prices agreed upon between the said mining company and the said foundry and machine company."
"5. That no part of said sum has been paid excepting the sum of five hundred (500) dollars, and the balance thereof, to-wit, the sum of $3,106.04 dollars remains due and unpaid, together with interest thereon at the rate of ten (10) percent per annum from the said 26th day of March, A.D. 1883."
"6. That on the 27th day of March, A.D. 1883, the said Salt Lake Foundry and Machine Company caused to be recorded in the office of the County Recorder of Juab County, Utah, their claim for a lien on the premises above described, containing a statement of its demand after deducting all just credits and offsets, with the name of the owner, to-wit, the said Mammoth Mining Company, and a statement of the time given, terms and conditions of the contract, and a description of the premises sought to be charged with the lien; the facts stated
in said notice of lien being in all respects the facts set forth in the foregoing findings of facts."
"7. That this action was brought to foreclose said lien within the time allowed by law for that purpose."
"From the above findings of facts the court finds the following conclusions of law:"
"1. That the said Salt Lake Foundry and Machine Company is entitled to a judgment against the said Mammoth Mining Company in the sum of three thousand one hundred and six and 4/100 ($3,106.04) dollars, with interest thereon from March 26, 1883, at the rate of ten percent per annum, amounting in all to the sum of five thousand and eleven and 54/100 ($5,011.54) dollars, and for costs of this suit, and that execution issue therefor."
"2. That said Salt Lake Foundry and Machine Company is also entitled to a decree establishing the said judgment as a lien upon the premises mentioned in the complaint and findings heretofore filed, and foreclosing the same according to the law and practice of this Court."
Decree having been entered accordingly, the case was carried by appeal to the supreme court of the territory, where errors were assigned to the sufficiency of the evidence to sustain the special findings, and to the admission of certain evidence, and the allowance of certain questions against defendant's objection. The supreme court held that the evidence justified the findings, and that there was no error in the rulings in relation to the testimony, and affirmed the decree. 6 Utah 351.
Thereupon an appeal was taken to this Court, and like errors assigned here.