174 Mass. 212 (1899), Hector v. Boston Elec. Light Co.

Citation:174 Mass. 212, 54 N.E. 539
Opinion Judge:MORTON, J.
Attorney:[54 N.E. 539] S.L. Whipple and W.M. Noble, for plaintiff. E.W. Burdett and C.A. Snow, for defendant.
Case Date:September 07, 1899
Court:Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts

Page 212

174 Mass. 212 (1899)

54 N.E. 539




Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts, Suffolk.

September 7, 1899


Page 213

[54 N.E. 539] S.L. Whipple and W.M. Noble, for plaintiff.

E.W. Burdett and C.A. Snow, for defendant.



After the former decision in this case, reported in 161 Mass. 558, 37 N.E. 773, the plaintiff amended his declaration by adding an allegation that the defendant was wrongfully maintaining its wires over 41 Temple Place, without any right or possession from the owners or occupants thereof, and went to trial on the declaration as thus amended. At the conclusion of the plaintiff's evidence the learned chief justice of the superior court ruled that the plaintiff could not recover, and directed a verdict for the defendant. The case comes here now on the plaintiff's exceptions to this ruling and order. The plaintiff contends that the evidence at the last trial differed favorably to him in material respects from what it was at the former [54 N.E. 540] trial, and therefore that the grounds on which the court decided that case are not applicable to this. But, while it is true that there are some differences, we do not think that they affect the substantial grounds on which the decision in that case was placed. Those grounds were, in brief, that the defendant owed no duty to the plaintiff to have its wires properly insulated at the place where he was injured, or to have them supported so far above the roof of No. 41 that the plaintiff would not come in contact with them, and that the defendant was not required, for the protection of the servants of the telephone company, to maintain an effectual insulation of its wires over other buildings than that on which the standard was placed at places where the defendant had no reason to expect that they would go in using its standard, and where the defendant had neither invited nor licensed them to go. It was assumed in the opinion that the defendant had permitted the telephone company to use its standard on building No. 45 Temple Place, and that the plaintiff, as the servant of that company, had an implied license, through the defendant, from the owner or occupant, to go upon the roof of No. 45, and attach telegraph and telephone wires to the standard. The fact, if it was a fact, that the right of the telephone company to attach its wires to the...

To continue reading