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DENNISTOUN V. STEWART, 59 U. S. 565 (1855)

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U.S. Supreme Court

Dennistoun v. Stewart, 59 U.S. 18 How. 565 565 (1855)

Dennistoun v. Stewart

59 U.S. (18 How.) 565


Where questions are certified up to this Court in consequence of a division in opinion between the judges of the circuit court, they must be questions of law, and not questions of fact; not such as involve or imply conclusions or judgment by the judges upon the weight or effect of testimony or facts adduced in the cause.

The questions must also be distinctly and particularly stated with reference to that part of the case upon which such questions shall have arise.

The points stated must be single, and must not bring up the whole case for decision.

The case was before the Court at the preceding term, and is reported in 58 U. S. 17 How. 606.

The certificate of division commenced as follows, namely:

"Certificate of Division of Opinion"


"Southern Dist. of Ala."




"Upon the trial of this cause in the circuit court aforesaid, the defendant, among other defenses to the case of the plaintiffs, insisted that the plaintiffs had surrendered to one Byrne, a bill of lading for ten hundred and fifty-eight bales of cotton on The

Page 59 U. S. 566

Windsor Castle, whereby the said Byrne was enabled to dispose of the said cotton and apply the proceeds otherwise than for the payment of the bill upon which this suit was brought, against the rights and interests of the said defendant, whereby he was injured to the whole amount of the bill. And upon the point of this defense the depositions of Joseph Bramwell, Robert Barrett, Robert Winthrop, A. E. Byrne, Orlando Jones, Andrew Stewart, Charles Livingston, Moses Joynson, T. D. Anderson, and Wm. Moreland, which are hereunto attached, were read to the jury and formed the testimony relied on by the parties in reference to such defense. And upon the instructions proper to be given to the jury upon the said defense, the following questions arose, and upon which the members of the court were opposed and divided in opinion:"

Then followed the questions as they are stated in the opinion of the Court

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