PENNSYLVANIA R. CO. V. JONES, 155 U. S. 333 (1894)

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U.S. Supreme Court

Pennsylvania R. Co. v. Jones, 155 U.S. 333 (1894)

Pennsylvania Railroad Company v. Jones

Nos. 40, 41

Argued October 26, 29, 1894

Decided December 10, 1894

155 U.S. 333


It is the duty of a railroad company, running its trains in connection with other lines, and taking passengers and freight for transportation to points upon connecting lines, to carry them safely to the end of its own

Page 155 U. S. 334

line, and there deliver them to the next carrier in the route beyond, and, in the absence of a special agreement to extend its liability beyond its own lines, such liability will not attach, and such agreement will not be inferred from doubtful expressions or loose language, but it must be established by clear and satisfactory evidence.

The evidence in this case is reviewed, and it is held not to establish a special undertaking by the Pennsylvania Railroad Company that the plaintiffs should be safely carried in the train of the Virginia Midland Railway Company while proceeding along the road of the Alexandria and Washington Railroad Company between the cities of Alexandria and Washington, but that there was evidence which would warrant a jury in finding that the Baltimore and Potomac Railroad Company, the Alexandria and Washington Railroad Company, and the Alexandria and Fredericksburg Railway Company had made such a special undertaking, and were jointly liable to the plaintiffs under it.

An advertisement by a railroad company that it runs or connects with trains of another company so as to form through lines, without breaking bulk or transferring passengers, does not tend to show a contract between the companies to share profits and losses.

When a railroad for which a receiver has been appointed is practically managed and controlled by the agents and employees of the company, and the receiver's function as to business with connecting lines is restricted to the receipt of its share of the net earnings, and a passenger who receives an injury while being transported upon it to a connecting line brings an action against the company and other connecting lines to recover damages therefor, there is no. error in instructing the jury that if they shall find the company guilty of negligence their verdict will be against it.

In this case, the Alexandria and Fredericksburg Railway Company further set up that at the time of the happening of the injury causing the damages sued for, the road was in the hands of mortgage trustees, and that it therefore was not then a common carrier. Held, there was evidence which justified the court in submitting the question of the exclusive possession by the trustees to the jury, and that there was no error in instructing the jury that in order to acquit the company from responsibility, it should be shown that the management and operation of the road was conducted by the trustees to the entire exclusion of the company, its officers, and board of directors, and that this fact was notorious and could be presumed to be known to the public.

The case is stated in the opinion.

Page 155 U. S. 335

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