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GIBSON V. SHUFELDT, 122 U. S. 27 (1887)

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U.S. Supreme Court

Gibson v. Shufeldt, 122 U.S. 27 (1887)

Gibson v. Shufeldt

Submitted April 11, 1887

Decided May 23, 1887

122 U.S. 27


In a suit in equity brought in the circuit court by two or more persons on several and distinct demands, the defendant can appeal to this Court as to those plaintiff's only to each of whom more than $5,000 is decreed.

A debtor having made an assignment of his property to a trustee to secure a preferred debt of more than $5,000, other creditors filed a bill in equity in the Circuit Court against the debtor, the trustee, and the preferred creditor; the defendants denied the allegations of the bill, but asked no affirmative relief, and the decree adjudged the assignment to be fraudulent and void as against the plaintiffs, and ordered the property to be distributed among them. Held that this Court had no jurisdiction of an appeal by the defendants, except as to those plaintiffs who had recovered more than $5,000 each.

This was a motion to dismiss an appeal in equity. The material facts appearing by the record were as follows:

Jenkins made a deed of assignment of a large amount of property to Watkins, in trust to sell it and to apply the proceeds to the chanroblesvirtualawlibrary

Page 122 U. S. 28

payment of his debts, first to Gibson for more than $20,000, next to other persons named, and lastly, to his creditors generally. Shufeldt & Co. filed a bill in equity in the circuit court against Jenkins, Watkins, and Gibson to have the assignment set aside as fraudulent and void against themselves and other unpreferred creditors of Gibson, and for general relief. The Mill Creek Distilling Company filed a similar bill. The defendants answered severally, denying the allegations of the bills and praying to be dismissed with costs. By consent of the parties and order of the court, the two bills and intervening petitions of other unpreferred creditors were heard together as one cause. At the hearing upon pleadings and proofs, a receiver was appointed, the assignment was adjudged to be fraudulent and void as to the plaintiffs and petitioners, and the case was referred to a master, and upon the return of his report, a final decree was entered for the distribution of the fund in the receiver's hands, paying $6,756.22 to the Mill Creek Distilling Company, $3,943.21 to Shufeldt & Co., and a less sum to each of the petitioning creditors. Gibson and Watkins appealed to this court, and the appellants now moved to dismiss the appeal as to all of themselves except the Mill Creek Distilling Company.

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