Township of East Oakland v. Skinner - 94 U.S. 255 (1876)
U.S. Supreme Court
Township of East Oakland v. Skinner, 94 U.S. 255 (1876)
Township of East Oakland v. Skinner
94 U.S. 255
1. This Court concurs in opinion with the Supreme Court of Illinois that the fifth section of the Act of the general assembly of that state approved Feb. 18, 1861, conferred no authority upon a municipal corporation to subscribe to the capital stock of the Paris & Decatur Railroad Company.
2. The Township of East Oakland subscribed to that capital stock without being thereunto authorized, and its bonds, bearing date April 20,1871, and reciting that they are issued in payment of such subscription, are void.
3. Where there is a total want of authority to issue municipal bonds, there can be no bona fide holding of them.
This was an action of assumpsit on fifty-four coupons cut from certain bonds issued by the Township of East Oakland, Ill., in payment of its subscription of $75,000 to the capital stock of the Paris & Decatur Railroad Company.
The election authorizing the subscription was held Feb. 1, 1870, and the subscription made Aug. 15 of that year. The bonds bear date April 20, 1871. The other facts and the provisions of the statute applicable to the case are set forth in the opinion of the Court.
The case was tried by the court below without a jury, and resulted in a judgment for the plaintiff for $9,207.32 and costs. The township thereupon brought the case here.