1. A Washington statute (c. 50, Laws 1921,) disqualifies aliens
who have not in good faith declared intention to become citizens of
the United States from taking or holding interests in land in the
State for farming or other purposes not excepted, and provides that
upon the making of such prohibited conveyance the land shall be
forfeited to the State and the grantors be subject to criminal
punishment, and the alien also, if he fails to disclose the nature
and extent of his interest. Citizens owning land in Washington and
an alien Japanese, desirous of consummating a lease to the alien
for farming, sued to enjoin the state attorney general from taking
criminal and forfeiture proceedings, as he threatened
Page 263 U. S. 198
if the lease were made, alleging that the restriction violated
the federal and state constitutions and conflicted with a treaty
that the suit was within the equity jurisdiction
of the District Court. P. 263 U. S.
2. State legislation withholding the right to own land in the
State from aliens who have not in good faith declared their
intention to become citizens of the United States does not
transgress the due process or equal protection clauses of the
Fourteenth Amendment as applied to those alien who, under the
naturalization laws of Congress, are ineligible to citizenship, or
as applied to citizens who desire to lease their land to such
aliens. P. 263 U. S. 216
Truax v. Raich, 239 U. S. 33
3. The treaty between the United State and Japan of February 21,
1911, 37 Stat. 1504, in granting liberty to the citizens and
subjects of each party
"to enter, travel and reside in the territories of the other, to
carry on trade, . . . to own or lease and occupy houses,
manufactories, warehouses and shops, . . . to lease land for
residential and commercial purposes, and generally to do anything
incident to or necessary for trade upon the same terms as native
citizens or subjects,"
does not include the right to own, lease, or have any title to
or interest in land for agricultural purposes, and the Washington
statute above cited is not in conflict with it. P. 263 U. S.
4. As determined by the Supreme Court of the State, the
Washington statute above cited is not in conflict with § 33, Art.
II of the state constitution. P. 263 U. S.
274 Fed. 841 affirmed.
Appeal from a decree of the District Court dismissing a bill
brought by the appellants to enjoin the attorney general of
Washington from enforcing the state Alien Land Law.
Page 263 U. S. 211
MR. JUSTICE BUTLER delivered the opinion of the Court.
Appellants brought this suit to enjoin the Attorney General of
Washington from enforcing the Anti-Alien Land Law of that State
(chapter 50, Laws 1921), on the grounds that it is in conflict with
the due process and equal protection clauses of the Fourteenth
Amendment, with the treaty between the United States and Japan, and
with certain provisions of the Constitution of the State.
The appellants are residents of Washington. The Terraces are
citizens of the United States and of Washington. Nakatsuka was born
in Japan of Japanese parents, and is a subject of the emperor of
Japan. The Terraces are the owners of a tract of land in King
county which is particularly adapted to raising vegetables, and
which, for a number of years, had been devoted to that and other
agricultural purposes. The complaint alleges that Nakatsuka is a
capable farmer, and will be a desirable tenant of the land, that
the Terraces desire to lease their land to him for the period of
five years, that he desires to accept such lease, and that the
lease would be made but
Page 263 U. S. 212
for the act complained of; and it is alleged that the defendant,
as Attorney General, has threatened to and will take steps to
enforce the act against the appellants if they enter into such
lease, and will treat the leasehold interest as forfeited to the
State, and will prosecute the appellants criminally for violation
of the act; that the act is so drastic and the penalties attached
to its violation are so great that neither of the appellants may
make the lease even to test the constitutionality of the act; and
that, unless the court shall determine its validity in this suit,
the appellants will be compelled to submit to it, whether valid or
invalid, and thereby will be deprived of their property without due
process of law and denied the equal protection of the laws.
The Attorney General made a motion to dismiss the amended
complaint upon the ground that it did not state any matters of
equity or facts sufficient to entitle the appellants to relief. The
District Court granted the motion and entered a decree of dismissal
on the merits. The case is here on appeal from that decree.
Section 33 [Footnote 1
Article II of the Constitution of Washington prohibits the
ownership of land by aliens other than those who in good faith have
declared intention to become citizens of the United States, except
Page 263 U. S. 213
instances not here involved. The act [Footnote 2
] provides in substance that any such alien
shall not own, take, have or hold the legal or equitable title, or
right to any benefit of any land as defined in the act, and that
land conveyed to or for the use of aliens in violation of the state
constitution or of the act shall thereby be forfeited to the State,
and it is made a gross misdemeanor, punishable by fine or
imprisonment or both, knowingly to transfer land or the right to
the control, possession or use of land to such an alien. It is also
made a gross misdemeanor for any such alien having title to such
land or the control, possession, or use thereof, to refuse to
disclose to the Attorney General or the prosecuting attorney the
nature and extent of his interest in the land. The Attorney General
and the prosecuting attorneys of the several counties are charged
with the enforcement of the act.
Page 263 U. S. 214
1. The Attorney General questions the jurisdiction of the court
to grant equitable relief even if the statute be unconstitutional.
He contends that the appellants have a plain, adequate and speedy
remedy at law; that the case involves but a single transaction, and
that, if the proposed lease is made, the only remedy which the
State has, so far as civil proceedings are concerned, is an escheat
proceeding in which the validity of the law complained of may be
finally determined; that an acquittal of the Terraces of the
criminal offense created by the statute would protect them from
further prosecution, and that Nakatsuka is liable criminally only
upon his failure to disclose the fact that he holds an interest in
The unconstitutionality of a state law is not of itself ground
for equitable relief in the courts of the United States. That a
suit in equity does not lie where there is a plain adequate and
complete remedy at law is so well understood as not to require the
citation of authorities. But the legal remedy must be as complete,
practical and efficient as that which equity could afford.
Boise Artesian Water Co. v. Boise City, 213 U.
, 213 U. S. 281
Walla Walla v. Walla Walla Water Co., 172 U. S.
, 172 U. S. 11
Equity jurisdiction will be exercised to enjoin the threatened
enforcement of a state law which contravenes the federal
Constitution wherever it is essential in order effectually to
protect property rights and the rights of persons against injuries
otherwise irremediable, and, in such a case, a person who is an
officer of the State is clothed with the duty of enforcing its laws
and who threatens and is about to commence proceedings, either
civil or criminal, to enforce such a law against parties affected
may be enjoined from such action by a Federal court of equity.
Cavanaugh v. Looney, 248 U. S. 453
248 U. S. 456
Truax v. Raich, 239 U. S. 33
239 U. S. 37
See also Ex parte Young, 209 U. S. 123
209 U. S. 155
209 U. S. 162
Adams v. Tanner, 244 U. S. 590
244 U. S. 592
Greene v. Louisville &
Page 263 U. S. 215
Railroad Co., 244 U. S. 499
244 U. S. 506
Home Telephone & Telegraph Co. v. Los Angeles,
227 U. S. 278
227 U. S. 293
Philadelphia Co. v. Stimson, 223 U.
, 223 U. S. 621
Western Union Telegraph Co. v. Andrews, 216 U.
; Dobbins v. Los Angeles, 195 U.
, 195 U. S. 241
Davis & Farnum Mfg. Co. v. Los Angeles, 189 U.
, 189 U. S.
The Terraces' property rights in the land include the right to
use, lease and dispose of it for lawful purposes (Buchanan v.
Warley, 245 U. S. 60
245 U. S. 74
and the Constitution protects these essential attributes of
property (Holden v. Hardy, 169 U.
, 169 U. S.
), and also protects Nakatsuka in his right to earn a
livelihood by following the ordinary occupations of life (Truax
v. Raich, supra; Meyer v. Nebraska, 262 U.
). If, as claimed, the state act is repugnant to
the due process and equal protection clauses of the Fourteenth
Amendment, then its enforcement will deprive the owners of their
right to lease their land to Nakatsuka, and deprive him of his
right to pursue the occupation of farmer, and the threat to enforce
it constitutes a continuing unlawful restriction upon and
infringement of the rights of appellants, as to which they have no
remedy at law which is as practical, efficient or adequate as the
remedy in equity. And assuming, as suggested by the Attorney
General, that, after the making of the lease, the validity of the
law might be determined in proceedings to declare a forfeiture of
the property to the State or in criminal proceedings to punish the
owners, it does not follow that they may not appeal to equity for
relief. No action at law can be initiated against them until after
the consummation of the proposed lease. The threatened enforcement
of the law deters them. In order to obtain a remedy at law, the
owners, even if they would take the risk of fine, imprisonment, and
loss of property, must continue to suffer deprivation of their
right to dispose of or lease their land to any such alien until one
is found who will join them
Page 263 U. S. 216
in violating the terms of the enactment and take the risk of
forfeiture. Similarly Nakatsuka must continue to be deprived of his
right to follow his occupation as farmer until a land owner is
found who is willing to make a forbidden transfer of land and take
the risk of punishment. The owners have an interest in the freedom
of the alien, and he has an interest in their freedom, to make the
lease. The state act purports to operate directly upon the
consummation of the proposed transaction between them, and the
threat and purpose of the Attorney General to enforce the
punishments and forfeiture prescribed prevents each from dealing
with the other. Truax v. Raich, supra.
They are not
obliged to take the risk of prosecution, fines and imprisonment and
loss of property in order to secure an adjudication of their
rights. The complaint presents a case in which equitable relief may
be had, if the law complained of is shown to be in contravention of
the federal Constitution.
2. Is the act repugnant to the due process clause or the equal
protection clause of the Fourteenth Amendment?
Appellants contend that the act contravenes the due process
clause in that it prohibits the owners from making lawful
disposition or use of their land, and makes it a criminal offense
for them to lease it to the alien, and prohibits him from following
the occupation of farmer; and they contend that it is repugnant to
the equal protection clause in that aliens are divided into two
classes -- those who may and those who may not become citizens, one
class being permitted, while the other is forbidden, to own and as
Alien inhabitants of a State, as well as all other persons
within its jurisdiction, may invoke the protection of these
clauses. Yick Wo v. Hopkins, 118 U.
, 118 U. S. 369
Truax v. Raich, supra, 239 U. S. 39
The Fourteenth Amendment, as against the arbitrary and capricious
or unjustly discriminatory action of the State, protects the owners
Page 263 U. S. 217
right to lease and dispose of their land for lawful purposes and
the alien resident in his right to earn a living by following
ordinary occupations of the community, but it does not take away
from the State those powers of police that were reserved at the
time of the adoption of the Constitution. Barbier v.
Connolly, 113 U. S. 27
113 U. S. 31
Mugler v. Kansas, 123 U. S. 623
123 U. S. 663
Powell v. Pennsylvania, 127 U. S. 678
127 U. S. 683
In re Kemmler, 136 U. S. 436
136 U. S. 449
Lawton v. Steele, 152 U. S. 133
152 U. S. 136
Phillips v. Mobile, 208 U. S. 472
208 U. S. 479
Hendrick v. Maryland, 235 U. S. 610
235 U. S.
-623. And, in the exercise of such powers, the State
has wide discretion in determining its own public policy and what
measures are necessary for its own protection and properly to
promote the safety, peace, and good order of its people.
And, while Congress has exclusive jurisdiction over immigration,
naturalization and the disposal of the public domain, each State,
in the absence of any treaty provision to the contrary, has power
to deny to aliens the right to own land within its borders.
Hauenstein v. Lynham, 100 U. S. 483
100 U. S. 484
100 U. S. 488
Blythe v. Hinckley, 180 U. S. 333
180 U. S. 340
Mr. Justice Field, speaking for this court (Phillips v.
Moore, 100 U. S. 208
said (p. 100 U. S.
"By the common law, an alien cannot acquire real property by
operation of law, but may take it by act of the grantor, and hold
it until office found; that is, until the fact of alienage is
authoritatively established by a public officer, upon an inquest
held at the instance of the government. [Footnote 3
Page 263 U. S. 218
State legislation applying alike and equally to all aliens,
withholding from them the right to own land, cannot be said to be
capricious or to amount to an arbitrary deprivation of liberty or
property, or to transgress the due process clause.
This brings us to a consideration of appellants' contention that
the act contravenes the equal protection clause. That clause
secures equal protection to all in the enjoyment of their rights
under like circumstances. In re Kemmler, supra; Giozza v.
Tiernan, 148 U. S. 657
148 U. S. 662
But this does not forbid every distinction in the law of a State
between citizens and aliens resident therein. In Truax v.
Corrigan, 257 U. S. 312
this court said (p. 257 U. S.
"In adjusting legislation to the need of the people of a State,
the legislature has a wide discretion, and it may be fully conceded
that perfect uniformity of treatment of all persons is neither
practical nor desirable, that classification of persons is
constantly necessary. . . . Classification is the most inveterate
of our reasoning processes. We can scarcely think or speak without
consciously or unconsciously exercising it. It must therefore
obtain in and determine legislation; but it must regard real
resemblances and real differences between things, and persons, and
class them in accordance with their pertinence to the purpose in
The rights, privileges and duties of aliens differ widely from
those of citizens, and those of alien declarants differ
substantially from those of nondeclarants. Formerly, in many of the
States, the right to vote and hold office was extended to
declarants, and many important offices have been held by them. But
these rights have not been granted to nondeclarants. By various
acts of Congress, [Footnote
Page 263 U. S. 219
declarants have been made liable to military duty, but no act
has imposed that duty on nondeclarants. The fourth paragraph of
Article I of the treaty, invoked by the appellants, provides that
the citizens or subjects of each shall be exempt in the territories
of the other from compulsory military service either on land or
sea, in the regular forces, or in the national guard, or in the
militia; also from all contributions imposed in lieu of personal
service, and from all forced loans or military exactions or
contributions. The alien's formally declared bona fide
intention to renounce forever all allegiance and fidelity to the
sovereignty to which he lately has been a subject, and to become a
citizen of the United States and permanently reside therein
distinguishes him from an ineligible alien or an eligible alien who
has not so declared.
By the statute in question, all aliens who have not in good
faith declared intention to become citizens of the United States,
as specified in section 1(a), are called "aliens," and it is
provided that they shall not "own" "land," as defined in clauses
(d) and (b) of section 1 respectively. The class so created
includes all, but is not limited to, aliens not eligible to become
citizens. Eligible aliens who have not declared their intention to
become citizens are included, and the act provides that unless
declarants be admitted to citizenship within seven years after the
declaration is made, bad faith will be presumed. This leaves the
class permitted so to own land made up of citizens and aliens who
may, and who intend to, become citizens, and who in good faith have
made the declaration required by the naturalization laws. The
inclusion of good faith declarants in the same class with citizens
does not unjustly discriminate against aliens who are ineligible
Page 263 U. S. 220
against eligible aliens who have failed to declare their
intention. The classification is based on eligibility and purpose
to naturalize. Eligible aliens are free white persons and persons
of African nativity or descent. [Footnote 6
] Congress is not trammeled, and it may grant or
withhold the privilege of naturalization upon any grounds or
without any reason, as it sees fit. But it is not to be supposed
that its acts defining eligibility are arbitrary or unsupported by
reasonable consideration of public policy.
The State properly may assume that the considerations upon which
Congress made such classification are substantial and reasonable.
Generally speaking, the natives of European countries are eligible.
Japanese, Chinese and Malays are not. Appellants' contention that
the state act discriminates arbitrarily against Nakatsuka and other
ineligible aliens because of their race and color is without
foundation. All persons of whatever color or race who have not
declared their intention in good faith to become citizens are
prohibited from so owning agricultural lands. Two classes of aliens
inevitably result from the naturalization laws -- those who may and
those who may not become citizens. The rule established by Congress
on this subject, in and of itself, furnishes a reasonable basis for
classification in a state law withholding from aliens the privilege
of land ownership as defined in the act. We agree with the court
below (274 Fed. 841, 849) that:
"It is obvious that one who is not a citizen and cannot become
one lacks an interest in, and the power to effectually work for the
welfare of, the State, and, so lacking, the State may rightfully
deny him the right to own and lease real estate within its
boundaries. If one incapable of citizenship may lease or own real
estate, it is within the
Page 263 U. S. 221
realm of possibility that every foot of land within the State
might pass to the ownership or possession of noncitizens."
And we think it is clearly within the power of the State to
include nondeclarant eligible aliens and ineligible aliens in the
same prohibited class. Reasons supporting discrimination against
aliens who may but who will not naturalize are obvious.
Truax v. Raich, supra,
does not support the appellants'
contention. In that case, the Court held to be repugnant to the
Fourteenth Amendment an act of the Legislature of Arizona making it
a criminal offense for an employer of more than five workers at any
one time, regardless of kind or class of work, or sex of workers,
to employ less than 80 per cent. qualified electors or native-born
citizens of the United States. In the opinion, it was pointed out
that the legislation there in question did not relate to the
devolution of real property, but that the discrimination was
imposed upon the conduct of ordinary private enterprise covering
the entire field of industry with the exception of enterprises that
were relatively very small. It was said that the right to work for
a living in the common occupations of the community is a part of
the freedom which it was the purpose of the Fourteenth Amendment to
In the case before us, the thing forbidden is very different. It
is not an opportunity to earn a living in common occupations of the
community, but it is the privilege of owning or controlling
agricultural land within the State. The quality and allegiance of
those who own, occupy and use the farm lands within its borders are
matters of highest importance, and affect the safety and power of
the State itself.
The Terraces, who are citizens, have no right safeguarded by the
Fourteenth Amendment to lease their land to aliens lawfully
forbidden to take or have such lease.
Page 263 U. S. 222
The state act is not repugnant to the equal protection clause,
and does not contravene the Fourteenth Amendment.
3. The state act, in our opinion, is not in conflict with the
treaty [Footnote 7
] between the
United States and Japan. The preamble declares it to be "a treaty
of commerce and navigation," and indicates that it was entered into
for the purpose of establishing the rules to govern commercial
intercourse between the countries.
The only provision that relates to owning or leasing land is in
the first paragraph of Article I, which is as follows:
"The citizens or subjects of each of the high contracting
parties shall have liberty to enter, travel and reside in the
territories of the other to carry on trade, wholesale and retail,
to own or lease and occupy houses, manufactories, warehouses and
shops, to employ agents of their choice, to lease land for
residential and commercial purposes, and generally to do anything
incident to or necessary for trade upon the same terms as native
citizens or subjects, submitting themselves to the laws and
regulations there established."
For the purpose of bringing Nakatsuka within the protection of
the treaty, the amended complaint alleges that, in addition to
being a capable farmer, he is engaged in the business of trading,
wholesale and retail, in farm products and shipping the same in
intrastate, interstate and foreign commerce, and, instead of
purchasing such farm products, he has produced, and desires to
continue to produce, his own farm products for the purpose of
selling them in such wholesale and retail trade, and if he is
prevented from leasing land for the purpose of producing farm
products for such trade he will be prevented from engaging in trade
and the incidents to trade, as he is authorized to do under the
Page 263 U. S. 223
To prevail on this point, appellants must show conflict between
the state act and the treaty. Each State, in the absence of any
treaty provision conferring the right, may enact laws prohibiting
aliens from owning land within its borders. Unless the right to own
or lease land is given by the treaty, no question of conflict can
arise. We think that the treaty not only contains no provision
giving Japanese the right to own or lease land for agricultural
purposes, but, when viewed in the light of the negotiations leading
up to its consummation, the language shows that the high
contracting parties respectively intended to withhold a treaty
grant of that right to the citizens or subjects of either in the
territories of the other. The right to "carry on trade" or "to own
or lease and occupy houses, manufactories, warehouses and shops,"
or "to lease land for residential and commercial purposes," or "to
do anything incident to or necessary for trade" cannot be said to
include the right to own or lease or to have any title to or
interest in land for agricultural purposes. The enumeration of
rights to own or lease for other specified purposes impliedly
negatives the right to own or lease land for these purposes. A
careful reading of the treaty suffices, in our opinion, to negative
the claim asserted by appellant that it conflicts with the state
But if the language left the meaning of its provisions doubtful
or obscure, the circumstances of the making of the treaty, as set
forth in the opinion of the District Court (supra,
Fed. 844, 845), would resolve all doubts against the appellants'
contention. The letter of Secretary of State Bryan to Viscount
Chinda, July 16, 1913, shows that, in accordance with the desire of
Japan, the right to own land was not conferred. And it appears that
the right to lease land for other than residential and commercial
purposes was deliberately withheld by substituting the words of the
treaty, "to lease land for residential and commercial purposes,"
for a more comprehensive clause
Page 263 U. S. 224
contained in an earlier draft of the instrument, namely, "to
lease land for residential, commercial, industrial, manufacturing
and other lawful purposes."
4. The act complained of is not repugnant to § 33 of Article II
of the state Constitution.
That section provides that "the ownership of lands by aliens . .
. is prohibited in this State. . . ." Appellants assert that the
proposed lease of farm land for five years is not "ownership," and
is not prohibited by that clause of the state Constitution and
cannot be forbidden by the state Legislature. That position is
untenable. In State v. O'Connell,
121 Wash. 542, 209 Pac.
865, a suit for the purpose of escheating to the State an undivided
one-half interest in land, or the proceeds thereof, held in trust
for the benefit of an alien, a subject of the British empire,
decided since this appeal was taken, the Supreme Court of
Washington held that the statute in question did not contravene
this provision of the Constitution of that State. The question
whether or not a state statute conflicts with the Constitution of
the State is settled by the decision of its highest court.
Carstairs v. Cochran, 193 U. S. 10
193 U. S. 16
This court "is without authority to review and revise the
construction affixed to a state statute as to a state matter by the
court of last resort of the State." Quong Ham Wah Co. v.
Industrial Commission, 255 U. S. 445
255 U. S. 448
and cases cited.
The decree of the District Court is affirmed.
MR. JUSTICE McREYNOLDS and MR. JUSTICE BRANDEIS think there is
no justiciable question involved, and that the case should have
been dismissed on that ground.
MR. JUSTICE SUTHERLAND took no part in the consideration or
decision of this case.
"Section 33. The ownership of lands by aliens, other than those
who in good faith have declared their intention to become citizens
of the United States, is prohibited in this State, except where
acquired by inheritance, under mortgage or in good faith in the
ordinary course of justice in the collection of debts; and all
conveyances of lands hereafter made to any alien directly or in
trust for such alien, shall be void: Provided, that the provisions
of this section shall not apply to lands containing valuable
deposits of minerals, metals, iron, coal, or fire clay, and the
necessary land for mills and machinery to be used in the
development thereof and the manufacture of the products therefrom.
Every corporation, the majority of the capital stock of which is
owned by aliens, shall be considered an alien for the purposes of
"Section 1. In this act, unless the context otherwise
"(a) 'Alien' does not include an alien who has in good faith
declared his intention to become a citizen of the United States,
but does include all other aliens and all corporations and other
organized groups of persons a majority of whose capital stock is
owned or controlled by aliens or a majority of whose members are
"(b) 'Land' does not include lands containing valuable deposits
of minerals, metals, iron, coal or fire clay or the necessary land
for mills and machinery to be used in the development thereof and
the manufacture of the products therefrom, but does include every
other kind of land and every interest therein and right to the
control, possession, use, enjoyment, rents, issues or profits
thereof. . . ."
"* * * *"
"(d) To 'own' means to have the legal or equitable title to or
the right to any benefit of;"
"(e) 'Title' includes every kind of legal or equitable title. .
"Section 2. An alien shall not own land or take or hold title
thereto. No person shall take or hold land or title to land for an
alien. Land now held by or for aliens in violation of the
constitution of the State is forfeited to and declared to be the
property of the State. Land hereafter conveyed to or for the use of
aliens in violation of the constitution or of this act shall
thereby be forfeited to and become the property of the State."
In Fairfax's Devisee v. Hunter's
7 Cranch 603, 11 U. S. 609
11 U. S.
-620, it was said, per Story, J.:
"It is clear by the common law that an alien can take lands by
purchase, though not by descent; or, in other words, he cannot take
by the act of law, but he may by the act of the party. . . . In the
language of the ancient law, the alien has the capacity to
but not to hold,
lands, and they may be
seized into the hands of the sovereign."
1 Cooley's Blackstone (4th Ed.) 315, *372; 2
Kent's Commentaries (14th Ed.) 80, *54.
Act March 3, 1863, c. 75, 12 Stat. 731; Act April 22, 1898, c.
187, 30 Stat. 361; Act Jan. 21, 1903, c. 196, 32 Stat. 775; Act
June 3, 1916, c. 134, §§ 57, 111, 39 Stat. 197; Act May 18, 1917,
c. 15, § 2, 40 Stat. 76; Act July 9, 1918, c. 143, 40 Stat. 884;
Act Aug. 31, 1918, c. 166, 40 Stat. 955.
Act June 29, 1906, c. 3592, 34 Stat. 596, as amended, Act June
25, 1910, c. 401, 36 Stat. 829.
Act July 14, 1870, c. 254, § 7, 16 Stat. 256, as amended, Act
Feb. 18, 1875, c. 80, 18 Stat. 318; Ozawa v. United
States, 260 U. S. 178
United States v. Thind, 261 U. S. 204
37 Stat. 1504-1509.