97 U.S. 646 (1878), Robertson v. Cease

Citation:97 U.S. 646, 24 L.Ed. 1057
Case Date:November 18, 1878
Court:United States Supreme Court

Page 646

97 U.S. 646 (1878)

24 L.Ed. 1057




United States Supreme Court.

November 18, 1878


ERROR to the Circuit Court of the United States for the Western District of Texas.

The facts are stated in the opinion of the court.


Page 647

Mr. Halbert E. Paine for the plaintiff in error.

Mr. Philip Phillips, contra.

MR. JUSTICE HARLAN delivered the opinion of the court.

This action was instituted on the 25th of September, 1873, by Cease, as the assignee of a note for $4,190, executed in Texas by Robertson, plaintiff in error, on the 2d of October, 1860, and made payable July 1, 1861, to the order of W. J. Chamblin, with interest at the rate of ten per cent per annum from date.

Does it sufficiently appear from the record that the case is within the jurisdiction of the Circuit Court? That is the first question to be considered upon this writ of error.

The payee, Chamblin, a citizen of Illinois, died in that State on the 29th of April, 1871. In September, 1873, the note sued on was assigned by his administrators to Cease. It appears from the pleadings that the heirs and administrators of Chamblin were also citizens of Illinois, both when the note was assigned to Cease and at the commencement of this action. It is also averred that Robertson, when sued, was a citizen of Texas, but there is no allegation as to the citizenship of Cease. The averment as to him is, that he 'resides in the county of Mason and State of Illinois.' It is, however, claimed by counsel to be apparent, or to be fairly inferred from certain documents or papers copied into the transcript, that Cease was, at the commencement of the action, a citizen of Illinois. One of those documents is a written notice, served by Robertson upon Cease's attorneys, that he would apply for a commission to examine as witnesses, in support of the plea in abatement, 'Chamblin, Winn, and Henry Cease, citizens of the county of Mason, State of Illinois.' The commission which issued, under the notice, from the clerk's office directed the examination of these witnesses, who are, in that document also, described as citizens of Illinois. The other document referred to is the deposition of Cease, which opens thus: 'My name is Henry Cease; residence, Mason County, Illinois; age, 52 years; occupation, grain dealer and farmer.'

Page 648

It is the settled doctrine of this court that, in cases where the jurisdiction of the Federal courts depends upon the citizen ship of the parties, the facts, essential to support that jurisdiction, must appear somewhere in the record. Said the Chief Justice, in Railway Company v.Ramsey, 22 Wall...

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