In re Keasbey & Mattison Co. - 160 U.S. 221 (1895)
U.S. Supreme Court
In re Keasbey & Mattison Co., 160 U.S. 221 (1895)
In re Keasbey and Mattison Company
No. 6, Original
Submitted October 14, 1895
Decided December 16, 1895
160 U.S. 221
By virtue of the Act of March 3, 1887, c. 373, as corrected by the Act of August 13, 1888, c. 866, a corporation incorporated by a the Union cannot be compelled to answer to a suit for infringement of a trademark under the Act of March 3, 1881, c. 138, in a district in which it is not incorporated and of which the plaintiff is not an inhabitant, although it does business and has a general agent in that district.
This was a petition for a writ of mandamus to the judges of the Circuit Court of the United States for the Southern District of New York to command them to take jurisdiction and proceed against the E. L. Patch Company upon a bill in equity, filed in that court on January 26, 1895, by the petitioner, described in the bill as a corporation organized and existing under the laws of the State of Pennsylvania, against the E. L. Patch Company, alleged in the bill to be a corporation organized and existing under the laws of the State of Massachusetts and having its principal office and place of business in the City and State of New York, and against Henry E. C. Kuchne and Edward H. Lubbers, alleged to be citizens of the United States and of the State of New York, and managing or general agents of the E. L. Patch Company in that state, for infringement of a trademark, owned by the petitioner, registered in the Patent Office under the laws of the United States, and used in commerce between the United States and several foreign nations named in the bill, and alleging that
"this is a suit of a civil nature in equity where the matter in dispute exceeds, exclusive of interest and costs, the sum or value of two thousand dollars, and arising under the laws of the United States, and also in which there is a controversy between citizens of different states within the intent and meaning of the statute in such case made and provided."
Upon the filing of the bill in equity, a subpoena addressed to all the defendants was issued and was served in the City of New York upon the E. L. Patch Company by exhibiting the original and delivering a copy to Kuchne, one of its managing agents in the district, and was also served upon Kuchne and Lubbers individually.
Upon the return of the subpoena, the E. L. Patch Company, by its solicitor, appearing specially for this purpose, moved to set aside the alleged service of the subpoena upon the company, and the circuit court, upon a hearing, ordered that the motion be granted, and that service set aside as null and void, and the company relieved from appearing to plead or answer to the bill.