THE GLIDE, 167 U. S. 606 (1897)

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U.S. Supreme Court

The Glide, 167 U.S. 606 (1897)

The Glide

No. 89

Argued May 1, 1896

Decided May 24, 1897

167 U.S. 606


The enforcement in rem of the lien upon a vessel, created by the Public Statutes of Massachusetts, c.192, §§ 14-19, for repairs and supplies in her home port is exclusively within the admiralty jurisdiction of the courts of the United States.

This was a petition to the Superior Court of the County of Suffolk and State of Massachusetts, under section 17 of chapter 192 of the Public Statutes of Massachusetts (the material provisions of which are copied in the margin *), by the Atlantic

Page 167 U. S. 607

Works, a corporation established by the laws of that state, and having its usual place of business at Boston, in that county, to enforce a lien upon the tugboat Glide, whose home port was Boston, for labor performed and materials furnished in

Page 167 U. S. 608

repairing her at that port, under a contract between the petitioner and Jonathan Chase, one of her owners, all of whom resided in Boston, and were named in the petition.

Upon the filing of the petition, the court issued a writ commanding the sheriff to attach the vessel and to summon her owners to answer. The vessel was attached accordingly, and her owners appeared and moved to dismiss the petition for want of jurisdiction because the subject matter was a matter of admiralty and maritime jurisdiction, and therefore within the exclusive jurisdiction of the courts of the United States. The court granted the motion and dismissed the petition. The petitioner appealed to the Supreme Judicial Court of the state, the majority of which held that the state court had jurisdiction of the proceedings under the statute, and therefore reversed the order dismissing the petition. 157 Mass. 525.

The respondents thereupon filed an answer, without waiving their motion to dismiss, and at the trial requested the court to rule that it had no jurisdiction for the reason stated in that motion. But the superior court ruled that it had jurisdiction, rendered judgment for the petitioner, and ordered a sale of the vessel in accordance with the statute, and exceptions to the ruling were overruled by the Supreme Judicial Court. 159 Mass. 60. The respondents sued out this writ of error, addressed to the superior court, in which the record remained.

Page 167 U. S. 609

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