United States of America, Ex Relatione Goldberg v. Josephus Daniels, No. 79

CourtUnited States Supreme Court
Writing for the CourtHolmes
PartiesUNITED STATES OF AMERICA, EX RELATIONE A. GOLDBERG, Plff. in Err., v. JOSEPHUS DANIELS, Secretary of the Navy
Docket NumberNo. 79
Decision Date01 December 1913

231 U.S. 218
34 S.Ct. 84
58 L.Ed. 191
UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, EX RELATIONE A. GOLDBERG, Plff. in Err.,

v.

JOSEPHUS DANIELS, Secretary of the Navy.

No. 79.
Argued November 14, 1913.
Decided December 1, 1913.

Page 219

Messrs. Albert N. Eastman and Charles Poe for plaintiff in error.

[Argument of Counsel from pages 219-221 intentionally omitted]

Page 221

Mr. Morgan H. Beach and Solicitor General Davis for defendant in error.

Mr. Justice Holmes delivered the opinion of the court:

This is a petition for a mandamus directing the Secretary of the Navy to deliver the United States cruiser Boston to the petitioner. The petition alleges that after survey, condemnation, and appraisal the cruiser was stricken from the Naval Register under the act of August 5, 1882, chap. 391, § 2, 22 Stat. at L. 296, U. S. Comp. Stat. 1901, p. 1058; that thereafter the Secretary of the Navy advertised for proposals of purchase under the act of March 3, 1883, chap. 141, 22 Stat. at L. 599, U. S. Comp. Stat. 1901, p. 1059; that the petitioner bid more than the appraised value, sending a certified check for the whole sum bid; that when the bids were opened on the day fixed, the petitioner's was the highest, but that the Secretary refused to deliver the vessel, and sent back the check, which the petitioner holds subject to the Secretary's order. The answer admits the facts, but sets up that the bid is not an acceptance of an offer, but is itself only an offer, subject to be accepted or not, at the discretion of the Secretary, and that the Secretary never accepted the petitioner's bid, the government having decided to lend the cruiser to the governor of Oregon for use by the naval militia of that state. The petitioner demurred, but the petition was dismissed on the ground that the discretion of the Secretary was not ended by the receipt and opening of the bids, even though they satisfied all the conditions prescribed. 37 App. D. C. 282.

We see no sufficient reason for throwing doubt upon this premise for the decision, but there is another that comes earlier in point of logic. The United States is the

Page 222

owner, in possession of the vessel. It cannot be interfered with behind its back, and, as it cannot be made a party, this suit must fail. Belknap v. Schild, 161 U. S. 10, 40 L. ed. 599, 16 Sup. Ct. Rep. 443; International Postal Supply Co. v. Bruce, 194 U. S. 601, 606, 48 L. ed. 1134, 1137, 24 Sup. Ct. Rep. 820; Oregon v. Hitchcock, 202 U. S. 60,...

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72 practice notes
  • Banco de Espana v. Federal Reserve Bank, No. 370-372.
    • United States
    • U.S. Court of Appeals — Second Circuit
    • July 8, 1940
    ...between plaintiff and the sovereign. Wells v. Roper, 246 U.S. 335, 38 S.Ct. 317, 62 L.Ed. 755; United States ex rel. Goldberg v. Daniels, 231 U.S. 218, 34 S.Ct. 84, 58 L.Ed. 191; Louisiana v. Jumel, 107 U.S. 711, 2 S.Ct. 128, 27 L.Ed. 448; see Tindal v. Wesley, supra, 167 U.S. at page 219, ......
  • Ramirez de Arellano v. Weinberger, No. 83-1950
    • United States
    • United States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (District of Columbia)
    • October 5, 1984
    ...back and hence must fail." Larson, supra, 337 U.S. at 700-01, 69 S.Ct. at 1466-1467 (footnote omitted), describing Goldberg v. Daniels, 231 U.S. 218, 34 S.Ct. 84, 58 L.Ed. 191 7 The majority opinion asserts that I "never consider[ ] whether there exists any statutory authorization for the k......
  • Land v. Dollar, No. 207
    • United States
    • United States Supreme Court
    • April 7, 1947
    ...S.Ct. 219. It is not an attempt to get specific performance of a contract to deliver property of the United States. Goldberg v. Daniels, 231 U.S. 218, 34 S.Ct. 84, 58 L.Ed. 191. It is not a case where the sovereign Page 738 admittedly has title to property and is sued by those who seek to c......
  • Morrison v. Work, No. 112
    • United States
    • United States Supreme Court
    • January 5, 1925
    ...211 U. S. 70, 29 S. Ct. 31, 53 L. Ed. 92; New Mexico v. Lane, 243 U. S. 52, 37 S. Ct. 348, 61 L. Ed. 588. Compare Goldberg v. Daniels, 231 U. S. 218, 34 S. Ct. 84, 58 L. Ed. 191; Wells v. Roper, 246 U. S. 335, 337, 38 S. Ct. 317, 62 L. Ed. 755; Lambert Run Coal Co. v. Baltimore & Ohio R. R.......
  • Request a trial to view additional results
72 cases
  • Banco de Espana v. Federal Reserve Bank, No. 370-372.
    • United States
    • U.S. Court of Appeals — Second Circuit
    • July 8, 1940
    ...between plaintiff and the sovereign. Wells v. Roper, 246 U.S. 335, 38 S.Ct. 317, 62 L.Ed. 755; United States ex rel. Goldberg v. Daniels, 231 U.S. 218, 34 S.Ct. 84, 58 L.Ed. 191; Louisiana v. Jumel, 107 U.S. 711, 2 S.Ct. 128, 27 L.Ed. 448; see Tindal v. Wesley, supra, 167 U.S. at page 219, ......
  • Ramirez de Arellano v. Weinberger, No. 83-1950
    • United States
    • United States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (District of Columbia)
    • October 5, 1984
    ...back and hence must fail." Larson, supra, 337 U.S. at 700-01, 69 S.Ct. at 1466-1467 (footnote omitted), describing Goldberg v. Daniels, 231 U.S. 218, 34 S.Ct. 84, 58 L.Ed. 191 7 The majority opinion asserts that I "never consider[ ] whether there exists any statutory authorization for the k......
  • Land v. Dollar, No. 207
    • United States
    • United States Supreme Court
    • April 7, 1947
    ...S.Ct. 219. It is not an attempt to get specific performance of a contract to deliver property of the United States. Goldberg v. Daniels, 231 U.S. 218, 34 S.Ct. 84, 58 L.Ed. 191. It is not a case where the sovereign Page 738 admittedly has title to property and is sued by those who seek to c......
  • Morrison v. Work, No. 112
    • United States
    • United States Supreme Court
    • January 5, 1925
    ...211 U. S. 70, 29 S. Ct. 31, 53 L. Ed. 92; New Mexico v. Lane, 243 U. S. 52, 37 S. Ct. 348, 61 L. Ed. 588. Compare Goldberg v. Daniels, 231 U. S. 218, 34 S. Ct. 84, 58 L. Ed. 191; Wells v. Roper, 246 U. S. 335, 337, 38 S. Ct. 317, 62 L. Ed. 755; Lambert Run Coal Co. v. Baltimore & Ohio R. R.......
  • Request a trial to view additional results

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