Stephens v. Cady - 55 U.S. 528 (1852)
U.S. Supreme Court
Stephens v. Cady, 55 U.S. 14 How. 528 528 (1852)
Stephens v. Cady
55 U.S. (14 How.) 528
Where the copyright of a map was taken out under the act of Congress, and the copperplate engraving seized and sold under an execution, the purchaser did not acquire the right to strike off and sell copies of the map.
The court below decided that an injunction to prevent such striking off and selling could not issue without a return of the purchase money. This decision was erroneous.
A copyright is a "property in notion, and has no corporeal tangible substance," and
is not the subject of seizure and sale by execution. It can be reached by a creditor's bill in chancery, but in such case the court would probably have to decree a transfer in the mode pointed out in the act of Congress.
The facts are stated in the opinion of the Court.