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der Act April 8, 1833, enacting that no will, by, and entirely satisfactory to, the other, in writing concerning any real estate shall who neither entertains nor manifests any be repealed otherwise than by some other desire that the separation, or the cause will or codicil in writing, or some other which brought it about, should cease. And a writing declaring the same, executed and wife who is prosecuting an action against proved in the same manner as thereinbefore her husband for divorce cannot maintain that provided, or by burning, canceling, obliterat- separation during the pendency of such suit ing, or destroying the same by the testator is obstinate on his part. Chipchase v. Ohiphimself, or by some one in his presence, or chase, 48 N. J. Eq. (3 Dick.) 549, 22 Atl. by bis express direction. Lewis v. Lewis 588. (Pa.) 2 Watts & S. 455, 457. See, also, Jack v. Sboenberger, 22 Pa. (10 Harris) 416, 420.
Where a husband and wife separated by mutual agreement that the husband, who
was not able to support his wife, should go OBSTINATE DESERTION.
to a distant place and build up a medical
practice, and, when able to maintain the “Obstinate desertion,” within the mean- wife, should send for her, and he did not ing of a divorce statute which provides that do so, and, though having an opportunity divorce may be decreed for willful, continued, to communicate with him, the wife did not, and obstinate desertion for the term of two on her part, terminate the agreement, and years, means a desertion which has resisted it did not appear that the husband was at such effort or concession as the party al- any time during the separation able to supleging desertion ought, under the particular port his wife, whereby the agreement would circumstances of the case, to have made to terminate by its own limitation, the separabring it to an end. A wife's desertion is not tion is not an obstinate desertion by the obstinate where the husband was partly to husband, within the meaning of the statute blame, and where he made no effort to allowing a divorce for such cause; nor, if the prevent her going on the day of her de- husband did nothing to induce the wife to parture, nor any subsequent effort to induce return, even if her separation from him was her to return, though they met several times without sufficient cause, her desertion is not thereafter on friendly terms. Van Wart v. deemed obstinate. Costill v. Costill, 21 Atl. Van Wart, 41 Atl. 965, 57 N. J. Eq. 598. See, 35, 37, 47 N. J. Eq. 346. also, Cornish v. Cornish, 23 N. J. Eq. (8 C. E. Green) 208; Bowlby v. Bowlby, 25 N. J. Eq. (10 C. E. Green) 406, 410; Payne v. Payne OBSTRUCT-OBSTRUCTION. (N. J.) 28 Atl. 449; Trall v. Trall, 32 N. J. Eq. (5 Stew.) 231, 232.
See "Willful Obstruction."
Hinder synonymous, see "Hinder.” The law as to what constitutes desertion is well settled. Chancellor Green, in Moores v. Moores, 16 N. J. Eq. (1 C. E. Green) monly used as synonymous, and are given as
"Obstruct, hinder, and prevent" are com275, 280, said: "To constitute desertion, a such in the dictionary. But they are of ditwife must absent herself from her husband ferent roots, and are employed conventionof her own accord, without his consent and ally to express varying sbades of meaning. against bis will. The simple inquiry is, has the wife for three years absented her struo" (Latin), is to build or set up something
Speaking etymologically, to obstruct "obself from her husband without his consent in the way; to hinder, “hind" (Anglo-Saxon), and against his will? If she has not, the desertion is not, within the contemplation to prevent, “prævenio" (Latin), is to come be
as in "behind,” “hindmost," is to pull back; of law, willful and obstinate. And the prin fore; to thwart by anticipating. In a more ciple is firmly established that if a wife
critical acceptation, "obstruct" implies oppo leaves her husband without cause, and with intent to throw off her marital duty, and aft- sition without active force, and does not imerwards realizes that she has acted hastily effective; "hinder” implies action, and, to
ply that the opposition was, in the end, or foolishly, and would return if the way
some extent, effectiveness; to "prevent” is was open to her, and her husband refrains to be effective, but not necessarily by force, from doing anything to induce her to re- either active or inert. Thus it may be that turn, for the purpose of making her absence a ground of divorce, her desertion in such an officer of the law was obstructed in his case is neither obstinate nor against his will." duty, and hindered, perhaps, for a long time,
but not finally prevented, from performing The essence of the wrong of desertion by a
it. So, too, he may have been obstructed; wife consists in the refusal by her, against the will and contrary to the wishes of her but, surmounting or avoiding the obstruction, husband, to perform her marital duties and he may be prevented by stratagem, though
he may have been not even hindered. Again, her obligations. Newing v. Newing, 45 N. J.
stratagem alone can neither binder nor obEq. (17 Stew.) 498, 18 Atl. 166.
struct him; and yet, should the success of Desertion cannot be considered as obsti- the stratagem involve action, as it would alnate when the separation is acquiesced in most necesserliy, it might be very questiona
ble whether the act ought not to be regard-, City of Oshkosh, 51 N. W. 560, 562, 81 Wis. ed as a hindrance. These distinctions are, 313, 15 L. R. A. 553, 29 Am. St. Rep. 898. however, the appropriate subjects of scholas
Obstruct does not necessarily mean to tic, rather than juridical, disquisition. Statotes defining crimes, unless the phraseology render Impassable, as used in an ordinance they employ has been itself legally defined, punishing whoever shall obstruct any street must be interpreted as their language is un- or highway. The word evidently means to derstood by mankind at large, according to place an obstacle in the way, or an impedithe everyday import of the words. I shall ment which will interfere with the free pas. therefore charge you that the words "ob-sage along the street. Overhouser v. Ameristruct,” "hinder," and "prevent,” in the act can Cereal Co., 92 N. W. 74, 75, 118 Iowa,
417. before us (Fugitive Slave Law, $ 7), making it a criminal offense knowingly and willfully An obstruction, within the act of incorto frustrate or retard the attempted recap- poration of a railroad company providing ture of a fugitive slave by his master, mean that it should be so constructed as not to obsubstantially the same thing. United States struct or impede the free use of any public v. Williams (U. S.) 28 Fed. Cas. 631, 633. road, street, lane, or bridge, is anything set
in the way, whether it totally closes the Gen. St. 1878, c. 32, $ 78, authorizing a person who is hindered and obstructed, in passage, or only binders and retards prog
A road may be obstructed more or driving logs, by the logs of another, to drive less. Such word, understood in its ordinary such obstructing or hindering logs to some import, would make a railroad per se an point where they can be conveniently sepa obstruction to the free use of a street by rated, and to recover a reasonable compen, the public. Under the charter, a railroad sation for so driving from the owner, should cannot be built on a street in such a manbe construed to mean that if the logs of
ner as to cause any material obstruction. one person are in the way of the logs of Commonwealth v. Erie & N. E. R. Co., 27 Pa. another, so that such other cannot drive bis 3 Casey) 339, 355, 67 Am. Dec. 471. logs until they are gotten out of the way, he is hindered or obstructed. It is not To obstruct a highway means to stop necessary, to constitute such hindrance or up and wholly prevent travel upon a road, obstruction, that the logs should have come or render it unfit for travel. Newburyport in actual contact. Anderson v. Maloy, 19 N. Turnpike Corp. v. Eastern R. Co., 40 Mass. W. 387, 32 Minn. 76.
(23 Pick.) 326, 328. Of dae administration of justice.
“Obstruction," as used with respect to The words “obstruct the due administra. travel and passage placed in the open street,
a highway, is applied to impediments to tion of justice therein,” used in a penal and tending to make its use difficult and danenactment, necessarily limit the offense there
gerous. Gorham y. Withey, 17 N. W. 272, denounced to cases therein-in the court, 52 Mich. 50. still "before the same"-and exclude past cases. They do not cover misbehavior which, A fence along a highway is an obstructhough not directed to a particular case, tion, if it prevents public travel from beaffects all cases alike in the general adminis- ing perfectly safe, although it does not tration of justice. The words "obstruct the extend across the track. Mosher V. Vinadministration of justice,” in a section not cent, 39 Iowa, 607, 609. penal, regarding a power to preserve the purity and independence of the court, and thereby providing that the supervisors shall remove
"Obstruction," as used in Code, $ 993, promote the dispensation of justice, are broad obstructions in the highways caused by enough to include not only improper acts fences or otherwise, means an obstacle; an in particular, but those which undermine the impediment; a hindrance; that which imgeneral administration of justice as well. Ex pedes progress. In order to obstruct a highparte McLeod (U. S.) 120 Fed. 130, 139, 140.
way, it is not necessary that it should be
rendered impassable. Hence it would inOf highway.
clude trees growing within the limits of Encroachment distinguished, see “En- the road or highway which interfere with croachment."
travel. Patterson v. Vail, 43 Iowa, 142, 145. An obstruction is a blocking up-Alling Rev. St. $ 1326, providing that whoever with obstacles or impediments, and imped- shall obstruct any highway, or ill up or ing, embarrassing, or opposing passage along place any obstruction in any ditch constructand over the street-and, to constitute it ed for the draining of water from any highsuch, it need not be such as to stop travel. way, shall forfeit a certain sum, should be Shade trees from 25 to 40 feet high, and construed to include a barn occupying nearabout 12 inches in diameter, standing with ly one-half of the width of a highway in a in the sidewalk, from 8 to 15 inches from the populous village, and impeding and interfercurb of a street, are obstructions. Chase v. ing with travel on such highway. The fact
6 WDS. & P.-2
that a portion of the width of the street was degree of obstruction will vary with the left open, so that travelers thereon could character and extent of the navigation. conveniently pass the structure, does not Western Union Tel. Co. v. Inman & I. S. S. make it an encroachment, instead of an ob- Co. (U. S.) 59 Fed. 365, 367, 8 C. C. A. 152. struction of the street. It is difficult to lay down any general rule by which to deter: be a distinction between an obstruction and
As applied to navigation, there cannot mine, in any given case, whether an object placed in a highway is an obstruction or an cables, laid in the soft mud at the bottom of
an interference. Where submarine telegraph encroachment. It may safely be said that
a navigable river, whatever their exact posi. or , need not necessarily be such as to stop tion was, were in a permanent position, if travel on the highway. State v. Leaver, 22 they interfered at all with the rightful or N. W. 576, 578, 62 Wis. 387.
necessary use of steamers in that locality,
the interference was also permanent; and a The term "obstruction” will not include permanent interference which prevents a ves. the rightful use of a highway by individuals, sel from going where she ordinarily has which is itself in reasonably safe and fit con- the right to go, and wherever in her maneudition, or their misconduct upon it, though | vers she may find it necessary to go, whether such misconduct may amount to a public the necessity be constant or frequent, or nuisance, as used in Rev. St. c. 5701, making only occasional, as emergencies may compel persons causing an obstruction on a highway her, constitutes obstruction, In re City of liable for damages arising therefrom. Ray Richmond (U. S.) 43 Fed. 85, 88. V. City of Manchester, 46 N. H. 59, 60, 88
By an “obstruction" to the navigation of Am, Dec. 192.
a river is meant such an impediment to the The obstruction of a public road is a navigation that boats, in passing along the public nuisance, but private individuals can- stream, cannot, by the use of skill and care, not complain of such a matter unless they avoid being injured. Terre Haute Draw. can show an injury peculiar to themselves. bridge Co. v. Halliday, 4 Ind. 36, 41. Hill v. Hoffman (Tenn.) 58 8. W. 929, 931.
The prohibition contained in Act Cong. Of mails.
Sept. 19, 1890, 26 Stat, 454, prohibiting cre
ating an obstruction in navigable waters, is “Obstructing the mails," as used in Rev. general in its terms. Where, by reason of St. U. S. $ 3995 (U. S. Comp. St. 1901, p. the plastic nature of a substratum of clay 2716), providing that any one guilty of ob- under a railroad right of way located some structing the mails shall be punished, etc., distance from a navigable river, the track of includes the placing of obstructions by boys the road settled, and the additional weight on the track of an electric railway whereon of an embankment built by the company forthe United States mails are carried, by ced the clay onto the bed of the river, causwhich the mail is delayed or forced to be ing a bar which obstructed navigation, such carried in some other way. United States
a bar was an obstruction, within the meaning V. Thomas (U. S.) 55 Fed. 380.
of the statute. Northern Pac. R. Co. v. UnitWithin the meaning of Rev. St. U. 8. ed States (U. S.) 104 Fed. 691, 694, 44 C O. A. 8 3995 (U. S. Comp. St. 1901, p. 2716), which 135, 59 L. R. A. 80. provides that any person who shall know
What is an unlawful obstruction to navi. ingly and willfully obstruct or retard the gation must always depend upon the circumpassage of the mail, or any carriage horse, stances of the particular case. In a sense, driver, or carrier carrying the same, for every every vessel that is launched upon a river is such offense shall be punishable, etc., would an obstruction to its navigation, but such obinclude the stopping of a train carrying struction is not an unlawful one. So long as United States mail, although the person the vessel, however guided or propelled, does stopping the same had a judgment and writ not actually prevent or render hazardous the of possession from a state court against navigation of the river by others, it cannot the railroad company in respect to the lands be considered an obstruction to navigation in about to be crossed by such train. United the ordinary sense of the term. The VancouStates v. De Mott (U. S.) 3 Fed. 478.
ver (U. S.) 28 Fed. Cas. 958, 960. Of navigation.
The word "obstruction," in Act Feb. 2, The meaning to be given to the words 1834, $ 28, making it the duty of the city of ‘not to obstruct the navigation," as used in Philadelphia to keep the navigable waters Rev. st. § 5263 (U. S. Comp. St. 1901, p. construed not to include a rock in the bottom
within such city free from obstruction, was 3579), requiring cable companies constructing a submarine cable to so construct and of the river, of which no notice had been maintain it as “not to obstruct navigation," of Philadelphia, 78 Pa. (28 P. F. Smith) 23, 25.
given to the city authorities. Snyder v. City must depend upon each individual case, and must be disposed of upon its own facts; The term "obstruction," employed in refand it may be taken as a safe rule that the erence to navigation, includes a rope stretch
ed across the archway of a bridge over a, his foot, but could remove with his bands, is navigable river, and over the principal chan- not such an obstruction. Bullion v. State, 7 nel of the river crossed. The Swan (U. 8.) Tex. App. 462, 463. 19 Fed. 455.
The term "obstruction," as used by rail. "Obstruction by ice," within the meaning road men, means that which may obstruct or of a clause in a charter party that during hinder the free and safe passage of a train, the obstruction of the navigation by ice the or that which may receive an injury or damlay days are not to be counted, applies to such age such as would be unlawful to inflict if obstructions as prevent the loading of a ves- run over or against by the train, as in case of sel, as well as those which prevent her from stock or a man approaching on the track. going to sea. Ladd v. Wilson (U. S.) 14 Fed. Nashville & C. R. Co. v. Carroll, 53 Tenn. (6 Cas. 926.
Heisk.) 347, 368. Ot oficer.
To constitute an obstruction, within the “Obstruct," as used in Code, $ 4476, pro meaning of a statute prescribing the duties viding for the punishment of any person who of a railroad company when a person, anishall knowingly and willfully obstruct, re mal, or other obstruction appears on the road, sist, or oppose any sheriff, coroner, or other the animal must be in a position to be struck officer or person duly authorized, in serving or directly injured by the train while moving or attempting to serve or execute any law on the rails. Where the animal appears on tal process, means to oppose. According to some other part of the company's right of Webster, “to obstruct an officer” means to way, it is not an obstruction. Louisville, N. oppose that officer. It does not mean to op- & G. R. Co. v. Reidmond, 79 Tenn. (11 Lea) pose or impede the process with which the 205, 208; Alabama G. S. Ry. Co. v. Chapman, officer is armed, or to defeat its execution, 80 Ala. 615, 619, 2 South. 738. but that the officer himself shall be obstructed. It is opposition to the officer, and the engineer, on perceiving any obstruction on the
Under a statute requiring a locomotive words "obstruct, resist, or oppose” have near track of the road, to use all means in his ly the same meaning, and the word “oppose" power, known to skillful engineers, in order would cover the meaning of the words “re to stop the train, and making the railroad sist or obstruct," and they all mean the same
company liable for damages to persons, thing. Davis v. State, 76 Ga. 721, 722.
stock, or property, resulting from a failure
to comply with such requirements, where Of prosecution of action.
plaintiff's mule was killed by defendant's “Defeat or obstruct,” within the statute train the burden was upon defendant to show providing that if any surety shall abscond, a compliance with such statute. A mule is or otherwise defeat or obstruct any person a pretty large object. All trains running at from bringing suit, signifies the performance night carry headlights casting bright light of some act on the part of the surety which on the track before them, and an engineer will amount to the prevention or hindrance keeping a proper lookout will perceive so of a suit in opposition to the will and right large an obstruction as a mule on the track of a creditor, such as he cannot with reason
some time before encountering it. It then able diligence obstruct. The terms import becomes his duty to use all means in his powresistance and obstruction in his rights, and er to stop the train. South & North Alabama unless the acts complained of are, in point of R. Co. v. Williams, 65 Ala. 74, 77. fact, such as would hinder and prevent him from bringing suit notwithstanding his de Gen. St. 88 63, 107, making it an offense sire to do so, they cannot be properly said to for any one to obstruct a railroad train, defeat or obstruct such suit. Walker v. Say- does not apply to a passenger who, from ers, 68 Ky. (5 Busb) 579.
whatever motive, pulls a signal rope to a Persistent legal resistance to a judgment train to be stopped, and the safety of the
bell upon the engine, and thereby causes the is not an obstruction, within Gen. St. c. 71, art 4, § 9, providing that, if a defendant by v. Killian, 109 Mass. 345, 347, 12 Am. Rep.
passengers to be endangered. Commonwealth any indirect means obstructs the prosecution
714. of an action, the time of the obstruction shall not be computed as part of the period within Gen. St. 1878, c. 94, $ 63, providing for which the action may be commenced. Phile the punishment of any one who shall willfully lips v. Shipp, 81 Ky. 436, 442.
obstruct any engine or carriage passing on
any railroad so as to endanger the safety of Of railroad track or train.
any person conveyed in or on the same, does Pen. Code, art. 678, punishing any per- not mean the actual stoppage or impeding son who shall willfully place “any obstruc the passage of such engine or carriage by its tion upon the track of any railroad," means coming in collision with some obstacle placed an obstruction such as might have endan- in the way, but means the placing of an obgered human life; and a piece of iron bar, stacle on a railway in such a manner that which a person was unable to remove with any train, in passing, may strike it, and of such a character that the safety of persons, execution is returned unsatisfied, an alias conveyed will be endangered if a train come execution, etc., may issue, is to be construed in collision with it. State v. Kilty, 10 N. as having a prospective operation only, and W. 475, 28 Minn. 421.
is to be read as "hereafter obtained." Me
Govern v. Connell, 43 N. J. Law (14 Vroom) Of sidewalk.
106, 109. It is not necessarily an obstruction to a
In shipping articles by which seamen sidewalk to cover it by a roof 12 or 15 feet engaged to perform a whaling voyage in conabove it. Beecher v. People, 38 Mich. 289, sideration of the shares or lays to be paid 291, 31 Am. Rep. 316.
for all that was obtained during the voyage,
as soon after the return of the ship to a cerOBTAIN.
tain port as the oil could be sold and the voy
age be made up, “obtained” means the prodA landowner signed an agreement with ucts brought safety to the port of destination. a railroad company by which he relinquished It does not mean that the seamen shall have to such company the right of way for its a right to be paid their lays in all the oil takrailroad through his land “in considerationen on board the ship during the fishing voyof the prospective advantages which may ac- age. Reed v. Hussey (U. S.) 20 Fed. Cas. 440, crue to him, arising from the road's location 444. through such county.” The company sur
Though the Supreme Court of Tennessee, veyed a road across such land, and did some in Barnes v. Hayes, 1 Swan, 304, said that work thereon within the six years thereafter, an execution related to the date of the teste, but did not complete the road, and for more which is the first day of the term from which than 25 years did no work upon such land, it issues, and operates as if it were actually nor asserted any dominion over the right of running from the date of its return, and is way. During such time such landowner cul- a lien on all the goods owned by the defendtivated the land as the rest of his farm. The ant during that time, yet a lien of a judg. statute provided that “no railroad company ment may be said to have been obtained shall be barred or presumed to have convey within four months, within the meaning of ed any right of way, easement, or other in the bankruptcy act, where the judgment was terest in the soil which may have been con obtained in Tennessee, and the lien of the demned or otherwise obtained for its use as execution related back to the teste thereof, a right of way by any statute of limitations, which was more than four months prior to or by occupation of the same by any person the petition in bankruptcy. In re Darwin (U. whatsoever.” The court, in construing this s.) 117 Fed. 407, 408, 54 C. C. A. 581 statute, held that the word "obtained” must have been used in the sense of "secured" or
As acquire possession of. "acquired," and that by mere survey and
"Obtain," as used in a charge stating preliminary work the railroad company had
that defendant may be convicted of larceny not obtained the right of way across such land, so as to prevent loss of its riglit there if he obtains property with intent to steal to by the adverse occupation of the land-sion of.” State v. Will, 22 South. 378, 379,
it, is synonymous with “to acquire possesBeattie v. Carolina Cent. Ry. Co.,
49 La. Ann. 1337. 108 N. C. 425, 432, 12 S. E. 913, 915.
"Obtain," as used in an instruction that "Obtaining,” as used in an indictment certain money must have been obtained by charging a person with obtaining money un
means of force and violence, in order to conder false pretenses, means the same as the stitute robbery, is equivalent to “take,” as word "get," in its sense of "acquire”; that used in a statute, since “to obtain” means to is, the word means not so much a defrauding get hold of by effort; to gain possession of; or depriving another of his property, as the to acquire; and “take,” as used in the statobtaining of some benefit by the defendant. ute, also means to get possession of. State v. People v. General Sessions of New York Miller, 36 Pac. 751, 752, 53 Kan. 324. County (N. Y.) 13 Hun, 395, 400.
“To obtain" is to get hold of; to ob"Obtaining goods by false pretenses” 1s tain possession of; to acquire; to maintain defined by statute in New York as follows: a hold upon; to keep; to possess. “To con“Every person who, with intent to cheat or tract for” does not approach it in meaning. defraud, shall designedly, by color of any Sundmacher v. Block, 39 Ill. App. 553, 562 false token in writing, or by any other false
(quoting Webt. Dict.); State v. McGinnis, 33 pretense, obtain from any person any money, N. W. 338, 339, 71 Iowa, 685; Connor v. personal property, or valuable thing, shall State, 10 South, 891, 892, 29 Fla. 455, 30 Am. be guilty of obtaining goods by false pre- St. Rep. 126. tenses." Baldwin v. Need (N. Y.) 17 Wend. 224, 229.
As continuo. The word "obtain,” in a statute provid- "Obtaining," as used in an averment that ing that when any judgment is obtained, and a conspiracy was to prevent a certain per