Raymond v. Tyson,
58 U.S. 53 (1854)

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U.S. Supreme Court

Raymond v. Tyson, 58 U.S. 17 How. 53 53 (1854)

Raymond v. Tyson

58 U.S. (17 How.) 53


A charter party is an informal instrument, often having inaccurate clauses, which ought to have a liberal construction in furtherance of the real intention of the parties and usage of trade.

Cases cited to illustrate and explain this rule.

Though the owner of a ship, of which the charterer is not the lessee, but freighter only, has a lien upon the cargo for freight, properly so called, and also for a sum agreed to be paid for the use and hire of the ship, his lien may be considered as having been waived, without express words to that effect, if there are stipulations in the charter party inconsistent with the exercise of the lien, or when it can fairly be inferred that the owner meant to trust to the personal responsibility of the charterer. The American and English cases upon this subject examined.

Where a ship was chartered for a voyage from London direct or from thence to Cardiff in Wales, if required, to load for a port or ports on the Pacific, where she was to be employed between such ports as the charterers might elect, thence to be returned back either to New York or Great Britain, at their option, the time for her employment being to the full term of fifteen months, with a privilege to the charterers to extend it to twenty-four months, the charterers paying two thousand dollars per month, payable in New York semiannually, the circumstances of the case indicate that the owner meant to waive his lien upon the cargo for freight and trust to the personal responsibility of the charterer.

The ship having arrived at San Francisco with a cargo of coal, a libel filed to hold the cargo responsible for the freight ought to have been dismissed.

The libel was filed in the district court, held by Mr. Ogden Hoffman, Jr., who decreed that the libellant, Tyson, had a lien upon the cargo of coal for the sum of twelve thousand dollars. The libellant was

Page 58 U. S. 54

part owner and agent and ship's husband of the ship Orphan, and resided in New York. The claimant appealed to the circuit court, which was also held by Mr. Ogden Hoffman, Jr., where the decree of the district court was affirmed. The claimant then appealed to this Court.

The nature of the case is fully stated in the opinion of the Court.

Page 58 U. S. 57

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