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U.S. Supreme Court

Milk Wagon Drivers v. Meadowmoor Dairies, Inc., 312 U.S. 287 (1941)

Milk Wagon Drivers Union of Chicago, Local 753

v. Meadowmoor Dairies, Inc.

No. 1

Argued December 13, 16, 1940

Decided February 10, 1941

312 U.S. 287


1. A State is at liberty under the Fourteenth Amendment to use injunctive powers vested in its courts for the prevention of violence by labor unions in industrial disputes. P. 312 U. S. 292.

2. And where the controversy is attended by peaceful picketing and by acts of violence, and the violence has been such that continuation of the picketing will operate coercively by exciting fear that violence will be resumed, an injunction by a state court forbidding the picketing as well as the violence does not infringe the Fourteenth Amendment. P. 312 U. S. 294.

3. The master in the state court found "intimidation of the customers . . . by the commission of the acts of violence," and the supreme court of the State justified its injunction against picketing because picketing,

"in connection with or following a series

Page 312 U. S. 288

of assaults or destruction of property, could not help but have the effect of intimidating the persons in front of whose premises such picketing occurred and of causing them to believe that noncompliance would possibly be followed by acts of an unlawful character."

Held that it is not for this Court to make an independent valuation of the testimony before the matter or to substitute its judgment for that of the state court resolving conflict in the testimony or its interpretation. P. 312 U. S. 294.

4. In determining whether acts of violence accompanying an industrial controversy were attributable to a labor union, rather than to irresponsible outsiders, a state court is not confined to the technicalities of the laws of agency. P. 312 U. S. 295.

5. The present decision does not bar resort to the state court for a modification of the terms of the injunction should that court find that the passage of time has deprived the picketing of its coercive influence. P. 312 U. S. 298.

6. Thornhill v. Alabama, 310 U. S. 88, and Carlson v. California, 310 U. S. 106, distinguished. P. 312 U. S. 297.

371 Ill. 377; 21 N.E.2d 308, affirmed.

Certiorari, 310 U.S. 655, to review a decree directing a permanent injunction against acts of violence and picketing by a labor union.

Page 312 U. S. 291

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