The Corsica - 76 U.S. 630 (1869)
U.S. Supreme Court
The Corsica, 76 U.S. 9 Wall. 630 630 (1869)
76 U.S. (9 Wall.) 630
Where two vessels, moving under steam, are crossing so as to involve a risk of collision, if the ship which has the other on her starboard does keep out of the way of the other, as a ship in that position is directed to do by the Rules of Navigation adopted by Congress, by the Act of April 29, 1864, and a collision occurs, from the other vessel's not having kept on her course -- as under the said rules, it is impliedly her duty in such a state of movements to do -- the obligation rests on this last vessel to show sufficient causes existing in the particular case which rendered a departure from the rule necessary to avoid an immediate danger.
Appeal from the Circuit Court for the Southern District of New York, affirming a decree of the district court of said district, in which latter court Samuel Schuyler, owner of the steamer America, had libeled the steam propeller Corsica, one of the steamers of the Cunard line, for damages which his vessel had suffered by being, as he alleged, run into by the Corsica, in the harbor of New York. The collision occurred on the 9th of September, 1865, about midday; the weather having been clear, and the vessels for some time previously in plain sight of each other. The libeled vessel, the Corsica, laid the blame of the disaster wholly on the other steamer. The district court decreed for the libellant; the circuit court affirmed that decree, condemning the Corsica in $33,000 damages and costs. Whereupon the owners of the Corsica appealed to this Court.