Randolph v. Ware
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7 U.S. 503 (1806)
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U.S. Supreme Court
Randolph v. Ware, 7 U.S. 3 Cranch 503 503 (1806)
Randolph v. Ware
A promise by a merchant's factor that he would write to his principal to get insurance done does not bind the principal to insure.
Ware, the executor of Jones, surviving partner of the house of Farrel & Jones, British merchants, had in the same court, at June term, 1800, obtained a decree against William Randolph, administrator de bonis non with the will annexed of Peyton Randolph for a large
sum of money, with liberty to William Randolph to file this bill against Ware for relief in regard to 50 hogsheads of tobacco, shipped in September, 177 in the ship Planter, Captain Cawsey, and consigned to Farrel & Jones, a credit for which had been claimed, but was by the decree disallowed.
The tobacco never came to the hands of Farrel & Jones, having been lost at sea without being insured.
The appellant contended that he was entitled to a credit for the customary insurance price of the tobacco, viz., 10 per hogshead with interest.
1. Because, from the usage of the trade between the Virginia planter and the British merchant, it was the duty of the latter to have insured the tobacco, and that, having failed so to do, he is responsible as insurer.
2. Because Thomas Evans, the appellee's agent for soliciting consignments and managing this business, having promised to get the insurance done, it is equivalent to the promise of his principals, Farrel & Jones, and they are responsible for the consequences.
3. It was contended, that the claim, under all circumstances disclosed in the record, if not fit to be decreed, according to the prayer of the bill, appears to be of a nature proper to be decided in a court of law, in pursuance of an order of the court of equity, and therefore that the decree should be reversed and an order made directing a trial at law to ascertain whether the appellee is not liable to the appellant for the value of the tobacco and interest from the month of September, 1772, as standing in the place of insurer thereof.