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every other individual. “In its capacity of owner it was a private person; in its capacity of carrier it was a public servant. If it elected to become a private individual in respect of the ownership of this grain, it could extend to itself in its capacity as a public servant no other or different privileges than it extended to every other shipper."
The carrier was ordered to cease and desist from the practice so found unlawful.
RESHIPMENT OF GRAIN AT THE “BALANCE OF THE THIROUGII RATE."
The other branch of this western grain rate investigation involved the legality of what is known as the “reshipping privileges at Kansas City,” and the question was decided by the Commission in a separate opinion rendered June 29, 1897. The facts were quite fully stated in our last annual report, and the main points need only be recited here. Shipments of grain were carried to Kansas City, Mo., from points west thereof at local rates, and quantities of grain were afterwards reshipped and rebilled from Kansas City to Chicago or other destinations at the balance of the established through rate from the original point of shipment to Chicago or other ultimate destination, instead of the higher local rate in force from Kansas City to such destination. There was no agreement for through carriage between shipper and carrier at the original point of shipment, no other destination than Kansas City was named, and upon carriage of the grain to that point and delivery to consignee the transportation was completed and the local rate in effect to Kansas City was paid, but the practice was to allow the consignee or other owner of grain at Kansas City to ship from Kansas City to Chicago and other points at the balance of the through rate," upon presentation of the paid expense bill to Kansas City and certification by a joint agent of carriers at Kansas City. Under this "expense-bill" practice it was practicable, through transfer of expense bills, to secure a lower balance of through rate" than would result from deducting the local rate between the actual point of origin and Kansas City from the through rate between such point of origin and the final destination, and various other rate manipulations were possible.
The Commission held that such shipment to Kansas City and reshipment therefrom did not constitute a through shipment from the point of origin to the point of final destination, and grain so shipped and reshipped was not entitled to the benefit of the through rate in force; that the shipment from the point of origin to Kansas City was local, resulting in the grain becoming Kansas City grain, and the fact that it had come from a point farther west was no reason for applying on shipments of such grain from Kansas City any less or different rate than was in force from Kansas City. No opinion upon the practices of milling or reconsigning or holding in transit, when the shipment is a through shipment upon a through rate, was expressed.
POSTING OF RATE SCHEDULES.
In one of the decided cases it appeared that at one station the car. rier neglected to post its printed rate schedules, and that in lieu thereof it posted notices to the effect that its freight and passenger tariffs were on file in the office of the station agent and might be examined upon application to him. No public inconvenience was shown to result from the practice, and the fact did appear that the schedules were so kept because they had, when posted, been repeatedly torn down and defaced. We held that this practice of the carrier was not in compliance with section 6, which requires the rate schedules to be posted in two conspicuous places in each depot or station where freight or passengers are received for transportation. The Commission also said:
The destruction of these schedules is usually due to thoughtlessness rather than malicious intent, and if the carrier would bind up those intended for public inspection in some permanent form, as suggested in Appendix 2 to the third annual report of this Commission, thereby giving an idea of greater importance to the document, the effect would probably be to prevent their defacement.
GROUP RATES ON VEGETABLES-CLASSIFICATION.
In the same case (Rea v. Mobile and Ohio R. Co.) the carrier had in effect a rate of 70 cents on second-class articles, including beans, and 44 cents on third-class articles, including tomatoes, which applied over a group of shipping stations covering a distance of 271 miles, namely, from Prichard, Ala., to Verona, Miss., and from this group the extreme distance to East St. Louis is 640 miles. In the next 200 miles beyond Verona and towards East St. Louis the rates to East St. Louis fell to 30 cents, second-class, and 22 cents third-class. We held that the higher rates were unlawful for Verona and prima facie unjustly discriminating and unreasonable as to the other less distant points in the 271-mile group, but the evidence was not full on this branch of the case and the matter was left open, without the issuance of order, to permit a readjustment of rates by the carrier, but with leave to the complainant to apply for an order if it should become necessary. No further application or complaint has been received. Some evidence was presented concerning the carrier's alleged unlawful practice of charging second-class rates on beans, while tomatoes were carried by it as thirdclass freight, but it was not sufficient to justify an order requiring a change in its classification. Still, the difference between the rates of 70 cents on beans and 44 cents on tomatoes from Verona, Miss., to East St. Louis, Ill., appeared excessive, the cost of transportation being nearly the same, and we held that this ought to be remedied.
DAMAGES FOR REFUSING TO FORWARD FREIGHT OVER AN EXISTING THROUGH
The complainant Rea, in the above-mentioned case, had in June, 1894, for shipment from Verona, Miss., a carload of potatoes upon which he was offered an advance of $2.75 per barrel if he routed them to Cleve. land, Ohio, over the Cleveland, Cincinnati, Chicago and St. Louis Railway. The carrier's agent refused to send them that way, and complainant, for this reason, was obliged to ship them to Cincinnati, Ohio, where he could only obtain $2.25 per barrel, and his loss amounted to $100. The Mobile and Ohto and the Cleveland, Cincinnati, Chicago and St. Louis Railway had through billing arrangements to Cleveland, but on account of a "strike" the latter found itself unable to handle its traffic, and the agent at Verona was so notified by his general freight agent; but such notice was dated June 27, and the refusal to so route complainant's potatoes occurred on June 7, while the running arrangement was still in full effect. Reparation to the amount of $100 was ordered in favor of complainant.
LOWER RATES ON
IN CARGO LOTS THAN ON SUCH GRAIN IN
Carriers by rail from Buffalo, N. Y., established rates on grain received from lake vessels at that port, to New York and Philadelphia and points taking New York and Philadelphia rates, which were lower on so-called cargo lots of 10,000 bushels of oats and 8,000 bushels of other grain than on shipments of oats and such other grain in carload lots. Such cargo lots of 8,000 or 10,000 bushels, it was stated by defendants, represent the minimum bin capacity of lake vessels and of grain elevators, and the minimum quantity for which a lake bill of lading will be issued by any vessel, and they further averred that there is very active competition by the Erie Canal for the forwarding of lake grain eastward from Buffalo in cargo lots only, and to meet this competition it was necessary to make a lower eastward rate for cargo lots than for single carload shipments.
After the hearing the carriers modified their tariffs so that, with few exceptions, the lower rates for cargo lots were restricted to export shipments. Such modification removed the principal grievance complained of, and no evidence was offered concerning rates on shipments of grain for export. The complaint broadly alleged, however, that the less rate for cargo lots on shipments of ex-lake grain to seaboard points unlaw. fully discriminated against shippers of like grain in carloads, and this allegation covered rates on export as well as domestic shipments to the same port. The Commission held that the principle involved under lower rates for cargo or train load quantities than for carload shipments, whether for export or domestic use, violates the rule of equality and tends to defeat its just and wholesome purpose; and such purpose is not fully accomplished by making all cargo shippers pay the same rate and charging all carload shippers alike; that defendants should reconsider their grain tariffs with a view to amendment thereof in accordance with the opinion expressed, and that the case should remain open for such further action as may be deemed appropriate.
REGULATION OF ELECTRIC RAILWAYS UNDER THE ACT TO REGULATE COMMERCE.
In the case of Willson v. The Rock Creek Railway Company it appeared that a line of electric railway, lying partly in the District of Columbia and partly in the State of Maryland, is constructed upon or along public highways, and is essentially a street surface road for the conveyance of urban and suburban passengers. The carrier contended that the act to regulate commerce applies only to the ordinary steam railways, by which interstate traffic is mainly carried. But the Commission held that the terms of the statute in this regard are broad and general, and that it contains no exception indicating a design to exclude from its operation those interstate roads which are constructed upon public highways to provide the means for local passenger transportation in the streets of towns and cities and their various suburbs. see no reason to doubt that the authority of this enactment may be invoked for the regulation of carriers like the defendant if their business is actually interstate, whenever occasion arises for subjecting them to its restraints and requirements." (Two Commissioners dissented.)
A further question of jurisdiction was raised on behalf of the carrier by its plea that the law was inoperative in this case because the constitutional power of Congress to “regulate” commerce is confined to commerce is among the several States," and the District of Columbia is not a State within the meaning of that phrase. If such a proposition is correct as to commerce between the District of Columbia and an adjoining State, it is equally conclusive as to commerce between a State and an adjacent Territory, or between any two Territories; and it would necessarily follow that there is a large amount of internal commerce, and a vast variety of agencies employed in its transportation, which are not only uncontrolled by existing laws, either national or State, but which are beyond the reach of any legislative authority. We held that all internal commerce is either State or interstate; and as the commerce in which the defendant was engaged was not carried on within the limits of Maryland, but between that State and the District of Columbia, and is therefore not subject to regulation by Maryland laws, it must be within the jurisdiction of Congress and amenable to the regulating statute which it has enacted.
The defendant electric railway company and a land company, owning land and a suburban hotel along the line of railway, were distinct corporations, but under substantially the same ownership and control. The land company purchased passenger tickets of the railway company at full rates of fare, and sold them at half rates to guests of its hotel, to persons residing upon land which it had sold or otherwise transferred, and to others, but refused to sell such tickets at half rates to complainant, who, though living in the same locality, resided upon ground not acquired from the land company. It was held upon the evidence presented that no discrimination was practiced by the railway company; that the community of interest between the two corporations resulting from common ownership was not made a device for enabling the railway company to evade its legal obligations; and that the action of the land company in discriminating between persons in the sale of tickets for the benefit of its separate business was not subject to correction by the Commission. (Two Commissioners dissented.)
THE OMAHA BRIDGE CASE.
Omaha and Council Bluffs, on opposite sides of the Missouri River, are connected by an expensive bridge owned and operated by the Union Pacific Railway and also used under lease by other carriers. The rates at Omaha and Council Bluffs are substantially the same to and from all points, except points in Iowa west of the west bank of the Mississippi River, and rates to and from those points are generally the bridge toll higher for Omaha than for Council Bluffs. Through rates from the South are made the same to both cities by the competition of railways operated on both sides of the Missouri River. Rates on freight articles from the West are the same to these cities and other common points as far east as Chicago, and are part of an extensive system of charges applied by the transcontinental lines. Rates from the East are as low to Omaha as to Council Bluffs; and this equality was brought about some fifteen years since by increasing rates to Council Bluffs to the amount of the bridge toll as it was then fixed. For reasons stated in the report, this parity of rates from Eastern points is of considerable advantage to Omaha.
The object of the complaint brought on behalf of Omaha was to secure an order requiring the carriers to give Omaha the same rates as Council Bluffs on traffic to and from points in Iowa, and thus give the two cities the same rates to and from all points. There was some evidence tending to show that the carriers bad agreed to do this in 1882, but, as the public right to a just relation of rates between rival communities arises from provisions in the statute which forbid discriminating charges, we held that such right can not be abridged or enlarged by agreement of carriers with each other nor by promises made to shippers. In regard to the distributing trade in Iowa, it could not well be denied that Council Bluffs, situated in Iowa on the east bank of the Missouri River, has some natural advantage of location, and the carriers were not to be condemned for recognizing that fact in adjusting their charges. We also held, upon the whole rate situation of the two places, that the charge of unjust discrimination against Omaha was not sustained, and that the complaint should be dismissed without prejudice. (Two Commissioners dissented.)
A case involving the reasonableness of through or total freight charges from southern points to Kearney, Nebr., was dismissed. No joint through rates were published or filed, the defendent carriers either denied or did not admit the continuity of the shipment and car