Pierre Claude Piquignot, Plaintiff In Error v. the Pennsylvania Railroad Company

CourtUnited States Supreme Court
Citation14 L.Ed. 863,57 U.S. 104,16 How. 104
Decision Date01 December 1853

57 U.S. 104
16 How. 104
14 L.Ed. 863
December Term, 1853

THIS case was brought up, by writ of error, from the Circuit Court of the United States for the Western District of Pennsylvania.

The facts in the case are stated in the opinion of the court.

It was submitted, upon printed arguments, by Mr. Kennedy and Mr. Alden, for the plaintiff in error, and Mr. Snowden, for the defendants in error. But as the point of jurisdiction was not mentioned in the arguments, which were directed exclusively to other points, it is not thought necessary to give them.

Page 105

Mr. Justice GRIER delivered the opinion of the court.

The caption of this suit, and the declaration, describe the plaintiff as a citizen of France, but contain no averment as to the citizenship of the defendant. Nor does it state whether 'The Pennsylvania Railroad Company' is a corporation or a private association, or the name of an individual. The declaration avers that the defendants are transporters of emigrants for hire, and undertook to convey the plaintiff and his wife from Philadelphia to Pittsburg, but did it in such a negligent and careless manner that his wife was frozen to death on her passage. The defendant pleaded in abatement, another action pending for the same cause of action between the same parties, in the District Court of Alleghany county. To this plea the plaintiff demurred; and the court gave 'judgment upon the demurrer in favor of the defendants.' Whereupon the plaintiff brought this writ of error.

The question raised by the plea in abatement, in this case, is one of considerable importance, and on which there is some conflict of opinion and decision, but the judgment of the court below on the plea is not subject to our revision on a writ of error.

The twenty-second section of the Judiciary Act, which defines what decrees or judgments in civil actions may be made the subjects of appeals or writ of error, provides, 'that there shall be no reversal on such writ of error, for error in ruling any plea in abatement other than a plea to the jurisdiction of the court.'

The question of jurisdiction has not been made the subject of plea or exception, nor is it necessary, where it is patent on the face of the record. The judgment of the court, so far as the record is concerned, does not distinctly show whether the court quashed the writ on the plea in abatement, or dismissed...

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13 cases
  • Holman v. Carpenter Technology Corp., Civ. A. No. 79-2623.
    • United States
    • United States District Courts. 3th Circuit. United States District Court (Eastern District of Pennsylvania)
    • January 24, 1980
    ...68 (1965). See also Cameron v. Hodges, 127 U.S. 322, 325 (1888) and Piquignot v. Pennsylvania Railroad, 57 U.S. (16 How.) 104, 105, 14 L.Ed. 863 (1834). In other words, plaintiff must affirmatively allege the essential elements of diversity jurisdiction. McNutt v. General Motors Acceptance ......
  • Burleson v. Coastal Recreation, Inc., 75-4184
    • United States
    • United States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (5th Circuit)
    • May 5, 1978
    ...that jurisdiction does not exist, but even when it does not appear, affirmatively, that it does exist. Pequignot v. Pennsylvania R. Co., 16 How. 104, (14 L.Ed. 863.) It acts upon the principle that the judicial power of the United States must not be exerted in a case to which it does not ex......
  • Sherwood v. Newport News & M. Val. Co., 3,086.
    • United States
    • United States District Courts. 6th Circuit. Western District of Tennessee
    • April 8, 1893
    ...the record must show, by proven averment, that the other party is a citizen. Mossman v. Higginson, 4 Dall. 12; Piquignot v. Railroad Co., 16 How. 104. A controversy in the state court, by the state, upon a bond to keep the peace, against an alien, cannot be removed to the federal court, as ......
  • Hyman v. City of Gastonia, 05-1981.
    • United States
    • United States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (4th Circuit)
    • October 16, 2006
    ...each of the abatement defenses listed above. Instead, we can rest solely on the Supreme Court's decisions in Piquignot v. Penn. R. Co., 57 U.S. 104, 16 How. 104, 14 L.Ed. 863 (1853), and Stephens.4 466 F.3d 288 In Piquignot, the plaintiff sued the defendant in state court and then, while th......
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