Idaho Irrigation Co., Ltd. v. Gooding
265 U.S. 518 (1924)

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U.S. Supreme Court

Idaho Irrigation Co., Ltd. v. Gooding, 265 U.S. 518 (1924)

Idaho Irrigation Company, Ltd. v. Gooding

Nos. 324 and 336

Argued April 11, 14, 1924

Decided June 9, 1924

265 U.S. 518

Syllabus

1. A contract by a water company in Idaho granting a water right of so much water per acre is to be read with and controlled by statutes of the state limiting allowances to the amount used for beneficial purposes, and forbidding a water right owner to use more than good husbandry requires. P. 265 U. S. 523.

Page 265 U. S. 519

2. A state, through contract with an Irrigation Company, undertook to reclaim public lands under the Carey Act, and applied for and obtained from the Secretary of the Interior a patent for an area fixed by him upon evidence that an ample supply of water was actually furnished to reclaim it as contemplated by the act. Held that the action of the Secretary, regarded as an adjudication that the supply was adequate for all the land included, did not bind settlers on the project who purchased water rights from the company and who sought to enjoin it from violating their contracts by selling more rights in excess of the water actually available. P. 265 U. S. 523.

3. Owners of water right shares in a Carey Act project in Idaho held bound to share water proportionately with others who were sold like shares by the water company in excess of the water supply, but entitled to enjoin the company from disposing of additional rights. P. 265 U. S. 524.

4. An Idaho water company which sold water rights on a Carey Act project in excess of the water supply held properly to be enjoined from reselling other shares which it had sold and reacquired through foreclosure, even though appurtenant, under Comp.Stats., Idaho, § 3018, to land owned by itself, since, under the Carey Act and the Idaho law, water rights are distinct property not inseparably attached to the land for the irrigation of which they were acquired. P. 265 U. S. 525.

285 F. 453 affirmed in part and reversed in part.

Appeal and cross-appeal from a decree of the circuit court of appeals affirming, with modifications, a decree of injunction entered by the district court in a suit brought by owners of water rights (with whom the State of Idaho joined by intervention) to prevent the above-named Irrigation Company and other defendants from disposing of further water rights in an irrigation "project" in violation of the plaintiffs' contracts. The suit came into the district court by removal from a court of Idaho.

Page 265 U. S. 520

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