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U.S. Supreme Court

Valvoline Oil Co. v. United States, 308 U.S. 141 (1939)

Valvoline Oil Co. v. United States

No. 25

Argued October 19, 1939

Decided November 13, 1939

308 U.S. 141


1. An oil company owning and operating a pipeline through which it transports to its own refineries for its own refining purposes, partly across state lines, oil which it purchases from producers at the mouths of their wells, is an interstate "pipeline company" and a "common carrier" within the meaning of § 1(1)(b), and (3), of the Interstate Commerce Act, and, under § 19a(a) and (e), may constitutionally be required by the Commission to furnish maps, charts, and schedules of its pipeline properties for use in valuing such properties under that section. P. 308 U. S. 143.

2. In § 1(b)(3) of the Interstate Commerce Act, which provides that the term "common carrier" shall include

"all pipeline companies; express companies; sleeping-car companies, and all persons, natural or artificial, engaged in such transportation or transmission

Page 308 U. S. 142

as aforesaid as common carriers for hire,"

the final clause is conjunctive, not a modifier, and does not affect the generality of the first clause as to pipeline companies. P. 308 U. S. 145.

3. The valuation provisions, § 19a(a) and (e), are so far separable from the regulatory provisions of the Act that, in a suit to set aside an order under that section, the question whether the pipeline owner, if subjected to regulation of its rates, etc., as a common carrier would be deprived of property without due process does not properly arise. P. 308 U. S. 146.

4. The validity of the provisions of § 19a(a) and (e) of the Act does not depend upon the extent of a pipeline company's operations. Id.

25 F.Supp. 460 affirmed.

Appeal from a decree of the District Court of three judges, which dismissed a bill to set aside an order of the Interstate Commerce Commission.

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