Hawley v. Fairbanks,
108 U.S. 543 (1883)

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U.S. Supreme Court

Hawley v. Fairbanks, 108 U.S. 543 (1883)

Hawley v. Fairbanks

Decided May 7, 1883

108 U.S. 543


An act of the State of Illinois authorizing subscriptions by municipalities to the stock of a railroad company required the town clerks to transmit to county clerks transcripts of votes authorizing subscriptions, and the amount voted and the rate of interest to be paid, and after issue of bonds, certificates of the amount of bonds issued, the rate of interest thereon, and the number of each bond. It also required the county clerk, after the execution and delivery of the bonds, to annually compute and assess upon the township enough to pay the accruing interest and cost of collection, and a fund for redemption. A subsequent statute authorized holders of such bonds to register them with the state auditor of public accounts, and made it the duty of the auditor to estimate the amount of assessment necessary to meet the interest &c., and to inform the county clerk.


That the object of each act was to provide a mode for information to reach the county clerk as to the amount of money necessary to be raised for these purposes, and that certified copies of judgments recovered in the circuit court of the United States by such bondholders upon their bonds lodged with the county clerk, had the same force and effect as information derived

Page 108 U. S. 544

in the modes provided by law, and made it the duty of the clerk to proceed with the computation and assessment of the tax.

Where a state court enjoined a municipal officer from enforcing a tax to pay a municipal obligation, and subsequently to the injunction a judgment for payment of the interest which it was agreed should be made by the assessment and collection of the tax was recovered in a circuit court of the United States, the injunction cannot stand in the way of the enforcement of the tax by the circuit court, to carry its judgment into execution.

When distinct causes of action are united in one suit for convenience, and to save expense, and the sum at issue in some of the causes is insufficient to give jurisdiction, and in others is sufficient to give it, those cases in which it is insufficient will be dismissed for want of jurisdiction, and those in which it is sufficient will be retained for adjudication.

Petition for mandamus to a county clerk, to compel the assessment of a tax to pay judgments recovered upon municipal bonds issued to pay subscriptions to stock in a railroad corporation.

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