93 N.Y. 331, Royal Baking Powder Co. v. Sherrell

Citation:93 N.Y. 331
Party Name:THE ROYAL BAKING POWDER COMPANY, Respondent, v. GEORGE SHERRELL et al., Appellants.
Case Date:October 02, 1883
Court:New York Court of Appeals
 
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Page 331

93 N.Y. 331

THE ROYAL BAKING POWDER COMPANY, Respondent,

v.

GEORGE SHERRELL et al., Appellants.

New York Court of Appeal

October 2, 1883

Argued June 22, 1883.

Page 332

COUNSEL

Charles M. Marsh for appellants. The term 'trade-mark' has been applied to a name, symbol or design put on to distinguish the origin or ownership of goods, and to the label or manner of packing them. (Hier v. Abrahams, 82 N.Y. 523; Congress Spring Co. v. High Rock Congress Spring Co., 45 Id. 291; Morgan Sons Co. v. Schwachofer, 5 Abb. N. C. 265; Amoskeag Co. v. Spear, 2 Sandf. 599; Binninger v. Wattles, 4 Abb. [ N. S.] 206.) Only such words as are not in ordinary use in the English language, or are used to express origin or ownership, can be used as a trade-mark. (Corwin v. Daly, 7 Bosw. 233; Caswell v. Davis, 58 N.Y. 233; Amoskeag Co. v. Spear, 2 Sandf. 599; Binninger v. Wattles, 78 How. 206; Taylor v. Gillies, 59 N.Y. 334; Wotherspoon v. Gray, 36 Scott. L. Jour. 24.) The word 'Royal' is an adjective, and as such qualifies or expresses the quality of the essence mentioned in the label, and cannot be used as a trade-mark. (Richardson, Worcester, Webster; Corwin v. Daly, 7 Bosw. 233.) The fact that defendants made the name 'Royal Standard' on certain goods--e. g., mustard, gave them a right to apply it to other goods embraced within the ordinary scope of their business. (Amoskeag Co. v. Garner, 4 Am. L. T. R. [ N. S.] 176.) It matters not that the form of words or phrases adopted as a trade-mark also indicate the origin and maker of the article. The combination of words must express only the latter. (Caswell v. Davis, 58 N.Y. 233, 234.) The question being an important one, and there being some evidence upon it, the refusal of the court to find either way is an error of law for which the judgment must be reversed. (Code, § 993.)

John M. Bowers for respondent. A trade-mark can consist

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of a word, and in such case the use of the same word on similar substances, in any shape, manner or form, or in connection with any words, will be restrained. No imitation is necessary. (Hier v. Abrahams, 82 N.Y. 519; Am. Grocer v. Grocer Pub. Co., 25 Hun, 398.)The word 'Royal' can properly be used as a trade-mark. (Burton v. Stratton, 12 F. 696; Ford v. Foster, L. R., 7 Ch. App. 611; Braham v. Bustard, 1 Hen. & M. 447; Lee v. Haley, L. R., 5 Ch. 155; Meserole v. Tynberg, 36 How. 14; Caswell v. Davis, 58 N.Y. 223, 234; Van Beel v. Prescott, 82 Id. 630; Taylor v. Gibbs, 59 Id. 331; Amoskeag Co. v. Spear, 2 Sandf. 599; Corwin v. Daly, 7 Bosw. 233; Binninger v. Wattles, 28 How. 206; Meserole v. Tynberg, 36 How. Pr. 14; Newman v. Alvord, 49 Barb...

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