266 US 182 Davis 1920 v. Currie

266 U.S. 182

45 S.Ct. 88

69 L.Ed. 234

James C. DAVIS, Agent Appointed by the President under the Transportation Act of 1920, Petitioner,

No. 60.

Argued Oct. 10, 1924.

Decided Nov. 17, 1924.

Messrs. Douglas McKay, of Columbia, S. C., and Thomas W. Davis, of Wilmington, N. C., for petitioner.

Mr. L. D. Jennings, of Sumter, S. C., for respondent.

Mr. Justice McREYNOLDS delivered the opinion of the Court.

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This writ must be dismissed. The petition therefor declared: The sole question presented is: 'Can damages for humiliation and wounded feelings be awarded the respondent against the petitioner, the United States Railroad Administration, under the provisions of the Federal Control Act [Comp. St. 1918, Comp. St. Ann. Supp. 1919, §§ 3115 3/4 a to 3115 3/4 p], the proclamations of the President, and the general orders of the Director General pursuant thereto?'


At the hearing counsel relied on the following: 'The judgment against the Director General of Railroads for wounded feelings and humiliation arising out of a wanton, willful, and malicious act of his servant is unauthorized, involving, essentially, the infliction of a penalty upon the government.' The argument was that, although the trial court distinctly limited the jury to actual damages, nevertheless, it necessarily follows from the size of the verdict that punitive damages were assessed against and a penalty was imposed upon the United States.


The petition did not state the case presented at the bar.