Barnes v. Chicago, Milwaukee & St. Paul Ry.,
122 U.S. 1 (1887)

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U.S. Supreme Court

Barnes v. Chicago, Milwaukee & St. Paul Ry., 122 U.S. 1 (1887)

Barnes v. Chicago, Milwaukee and St. Paul Railway

Argued March 22-24, 1887

Decided May 23, 1887

122 U.S. 1


If a decree in equity be broader than is required by the pleadings, it will be so construed as to make its effect only such as is needed for the purpose of the case made by the pleadings and of the issues which the decree decides.

The decree entered in accordance with the opinion of this Court in James v. Railroad Co., 6 Wall. 752, when properly construed, invalidated the foreclosure of the mortgage made by the La Crosse and Milwaukee Railroad Company to the plaintiff in error only as to the creditors of the company subsequent to the mortgage who assailed it in that suit, but did not affect it as to the rights of the plaintiff in error or of the bondholders secured by the mortgage, which were acquired under that foreclosure.

The consent of bondholders required by the statute of Wisconsin to enable the plaintiff in error to commence proceedings for the foreclosure of the mortgage of the La Crosse and Milwaukee Railroad was duly given, and the outstanding bonds which were not actually surrendered and exchanged for stock were held by persons who in law must be regarded as consenting by silence to the proceedings, and the present holders took them with full notice of that fact.

The plaintiff in error has no title under which he can maintain a bill in

Page 122 U. S. 2

equity to take advantage of alleged frauds or irregularities in the foreclosure of prior liens upon the La Crosse and Milwaukee Railroad, or to recover money paid by the Milwaukee and Minnesota Railroad Company to redeem the Bronson and Soutter mortgage of that railroad.

In equity. Decree dismissing the bill. Complainant appealed. The case is stated in the opinion of the Court.

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