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rounding property against fire will be, by the introduction of such hay business into such location, considerably increased; that said lumber yard is already traversed by four converging railway tracks, uniting in one nearly opposite to such proposed hay barn; that for the purposes of such bridge department, the respondent heretofore has done, and must continue to do, upon its existing tracks last mentioned, two of which are also used for the passage of locomotives to and from respondent's round house and machine shop, a large amount of switching to and from near the said intended site of the petitioner's said intended hay business upon said lot or tract; which switching and passage of engines will, by reason of such location of such hay business, expose the respondent in greatly increased measure to una voidable dangers of setting fire to such proposed hay barn and scattered hay, by sparks from locomotives, and thereby of firing and destroying such surrounding buildings and property of itself and other persons, as well as property upon and within said lot or tract of the petitioner; dangers much greater and more frequent than if the large hay barn first aforesaid had been, as originally proposed, converted into three properly finished grain houses, used and to be used only as such.
The respondent respectfully submits, that all other considerations aside, while it may be unable to prevent the petitioner from erecting, maintaining or using upon his ground any such structures as he may law. fully in other respects choose there to have, this respondent cannot be reasonably required, at its own expense in construction, and at its own risk in operation, to aid or minister to any use of any structure or to any private business of any individual, at great, constant and unavoidable danger to adjacent property, whether its own or of other persons, and all this without reasonable ground to anticipate commensurate increase or any increase of its own earnings.
Wherefore, the respondent protests and insists that the prayer of said petition is without authority of law, and is unreasonable and grossly improper ip fact.
The respondent therefore prays that the prayer of said petitioner be wholly denied, and that said petition be dismissed. CHICAGO, MILWAUKEE & ST. PAUL RAILWAY COMPANY.
By W. H. NORRIS, its Solicitor. (Duly verified.)
Before the Railroad amd Warehouse Commissian of the State of
RORERT A. SMITH, H. B. HOFFMAN AND F. B. RICH ARDSON, RESIDENTS AND PROPERTY OWNERS
OF THE TOWN OF HINCKLEY,
THE KETTLE RIVER R. R. CO. THE ST. PAUL & DULUTH R. R. CO. THE EASTERN Ry. CO. OF MINNESOTA. TAE GREAT NORTHERN Ry. CO. J. F. FITZZPATRICK, ESQ., for Petitioners. WM. H. Bliss, Esq., for Kettle River R. R. Co. and St. P. & D. R. R. Co.
M. D. GROVER, ESQ., for Eastern Ry. Co. of Minnesota and for Great Northern Ry. Co.
The petition was filed with the commission November 21st, 1890. Copies of the same were thereupon sent to each of the defendant companies, and each company was required to satisfy said complaint or answer the same in writing with twenty days from the date of service.
Upon application, duly made, the time for answering was extended
The answer of the Eastern Ry. Co. of Minnesota and of the Great Northern Ry. Co. was verified and filed Jan. 6, 1891.
The answer of the Kettle River R. R. Co. and of the St. Paul & Duluth R. R. Co. was filed Jan. 10, 1891.
The petition contains the following averments:
1st. That the petitioners are each of them residents and property holders of the town of Hinckley, Pine, county, Minnesota.
2d. That each of the defendant companies is a coporation under the laws of the state of Minnesota.
3d. That in the year 1886 the Kettle River R. R. Co., under and by virtue of the laws of Minnesota, constructed a railroad within the limits of the town of Hinckley,extending from the village of Sandstone to Sandstone junction on the line of the St. Paul & Duluth railroad.
4th. That at the time of said construction and for the purpose of aiding the same, and for the purpose of procuring convenient, proper and necessary communication between the village of Sandstone and the village of Hinckley, the town of Hinckley, acting under the laws of the state of Minnesota in that behalf provided, issued bonds payable in thirty years, bearing interest at the rate of 7 per cent. per annum, for the sum of $12,000, and that said bonds were issued and delivered to the Kettle River Railroad Co. on or about December, 1886, upon the express condition and stipulation that said company should maintain said line of railway in good condition and with good accommodations for the traffic between said villages of Hinckley and Sandstone and upon the express condition that at least one train a day should be run between said villages.
That the Kettle River Railroad Co. accepted said bonds upon such conditions and have since disposed of the bonds.
That the town of Hinckley has paid all the matured interest thereon and at maturity will have to meet the principal.
5th. Thaton or about March 1, 1890, the defendant companies entered into a conspiracy for the purpose of depriving the people of the town of Hinckley of the privileges of said line of railroad.
6th. That the St. Paul & Duluth R. R. Co. owns all the stock of the Kettle River R. R. Co. and controls the property and franchises of the Kettle River R. R. Co.
7th. That on or about March 1, 1890, a lease was entered into by and between the Kettle River R. R. Co. as party of the first part, The Eastern Ry. Co. of Minn. as party of the second part lessee, and the St. Paul & Duluth R. R. Co.,or party of the third part, whereby the party of the second part was to have the control and use of said line of railroad and was to operate the same for a stipulated sum for the period of ten years and four months.
That the Eastern Ry. Co. thereupon took possession of said line between Sandstone and Sandstone Junction and maintained said line and operated the same until about May 17, 1890, when the running of trains was wholly discontinued, and that no trains, freight or passenger have been run upon or over said road since May 17, 1890.
The petition requests the commission to take such measures as will compel the operation and use of such line of railway in accordance with the uses and purposes for which the same was built and in accordance with the uses and purposes for which said bonds were issued by the town of Hinckley.
The answer of the Great Northern Railway Co. denies that said company ever made any arrangement of any kind with any. body concerning the railroad of the Kettle River R. R. Co.
The answer of the Eastern Ry. Co. of Minnesota, says that some time in April, 1890, Henry D. Minot, then the president of the company signed a paper purporting to be a lease from the Kettle River R. R. Co. of the railroad in question.
It avers also that such lease was executed by Mr. Minot wholly without authority from the Eastern Ry. Co. and that the same was never binding upon said company and denies the validity of such lease in any manner or for any purpose.
The Kettle River Railroad Co. and the St. Paul & Duluth R. R. Co. made a joint answer to the petition which admits:
1st. That each of said companies was a corporation created and existing under and by virtue of the laws of the State of Minnesota.
2d. That in the year 1886, the said Kettle River Railroad Company constructed a line of railroad within the limits of
the town of Hinckley, extending from the village of Sandstone to Sandstone Junction and there connecting with the line of the St. Paul & Duluth railroad.
3. This answer denies anyóknowledge or information sufficient to form a belief as to whether the town of Hinckley issued bonds to the amount and in the manner and for the purposes alleged in the petition, or as to whether said bonds were issued to and received by said Kettle River Railroad Co., or were issued upon the express condition and stipulation that said company should maintain said line of railway, and denies any knowledge or information sufficient to form a belief as to whether said bonds are the lawful obligations of said town or whether it has paid all interest due upon said bonds, or whether it will have to pay said bonds at the maturity thereof.
4. The answer denies the allegations of the petition that the defendant companies, on or about March 1, 1890, entered into any conspiracy for the purpose of depriving the people of Hinckley of the privileges and accommodations of the line of railroad so built between Sandstone and Sandstone Junction.
5. It admits the contract or lease between the Kettle River Railroad Company and the Eastern Railroad Company of Minnesota and the St. Paul & Duluth Railway Company, and recites the terms of such contract or lease.
6. It denies that on or about May 17, 1890, or at any time, the St. Paul & Duluth Railroad Company, the Kettle River Railroad Company and the Great Northern Railway Company conspired to discontinue the running of trains and the use of said line of railroad and denies any agreement or understanding at any time with either of said companies or with any person in relation to such discontinuance, and denies any knowledge or information sufficient to form a belief as to whether passenger or freight trains have been operated upon or over said line of railway or whether accommodations have been provided for travel and traffic between said village of Sandstone and Sandstone Junction over such line of railroad, and alleges that since the 1st of March, 1890, the Kettle River Railroad Company and the St. Paul & Duluth Railroad Company have not been in possession, control or management directly or indirectly of the said railway line and property or any portion thereof.
7. For a further and separate defence, the answer avers that after the construction of the Kettle River road and on or about June 17, 1889, the Eastern Railway Company of Minnesota constructed a line of railroad between Hinckley and Sandstone, and since then has continuously operated two or more passenger trains daily in each direction between Hinckley and Sandstone; that since last mentioned date the business of the Kettle River road has been wholly insufficient to pay the expense of operating the same; that the line of road constructed and operated by the Eastern Railway Company furnishes good and sufficient facilities for passenger traffic between Hinckley and Sandstone and avers that no public necessity now exists for the operation of the railroad of the Kettle River Railroad Company.
8. The answer further alleges that the town of Hinckley received from the Kettle River Railroad Company, 120 shares of the capital stock of said company of the par value of $100, amounting in the aggregate to $12,000, as a consideration for the issuing of the bonds of the said town.
That said town sold said stock for a valuable consideration, and that the same is now held and owned by the St. P. & D. R. R. Co., and alleges that the purchase price of said stock became assets in the treasury of the town of Hinckley which should be applied towards any liability upon the alleged issue of bonds. The petitioners filed a reply to the answer of the Kettle River Railroad Company, and the St. Paul & Duluth Railroad Company, which does not, however, contain anything material to the issues in this case.
A hearing in this case was ordered to be had before the commission, at its office, on February 5th, 1891, of which due notice was given to all parties, and adjourned hearings were had on February 13th and February 25th, 1891. Witnesses on behalf of the petitioners and of the respondent companies were produced and examined at such hearings.
FINDINGS OF FACT. From the admissions of the pleadings and from the evidence given at the hearings, and from the public records of the state, the commission makes the following findings of fact, so far as it is advised that such findings are material to the public questions involved in this proceeding.
First-That the Kettle River Railroad Company is a corporation existing under and by virtue of the laws of the state of Minnesota.
That it was created, incorporated and organized for “the location, construction and operation of a line of railroad com