UNITED STATES CIRCUIT COURT SOUTHERN DISTRICT OF NEW YORK. Before Hon. Charles A. Ingersoll, Justice. Noy. ll.Alfred T. Serrell vs. Dem/Ia/'k P. CoWns and Abijah Pell.This was a suit for the infringement of Letters Patent, granted by the United States to the plaintiff, Alfred T. Serrell, for a machine for making wood mouldings, in which he claims as his invention, the combination of moulding cutters with an adjustable feed ring or rings, in such relation to each other that the ring or rings shall travel in a line with the deepest cutting member of the moulding cutter and be capable of maintaining that relation under the varying circumstances of a change of form or size of moulding. The original patent of Mr. Serrell was issued on the 16th day of May, 1848. His claim in the original patent was limited to a combination of three things : that is, the feeding device, rotating cutters, a stationary plane. He soon found that persons infringed by using only two of the three parts, that is, the feeding device and cutters, omitting the stationary plane, which was not essential to the use of the other two parts ; he therefore bo ught suit against such alleged infringers and was defeated upon the ground that he had claimed only a combination of three things, while the alleged infringers had used only two of those things in combination, and therefore had not infringed the claim, although he was equally the first inventor of the two things alone in combination. Mr. Sen'ell, in view of this defect in his patent, thereafter surrendered it and obtained a re-issue on an amended specification ; and the present suit was brought upon the reissue against the defendants for using the two parts in combination : that is, the feeding device and revolving cutters in combination. The defendants set up iu defence the Wood-worth Patent and a machine stated to have been made by Horace V. Seigler and one Howe, in which a feeding roller with sharp spikes in it had been used as R feeding device in combination with cutters, before the invention of Serrell, and also, that Serrell's invention waS not patentable ; but the defendants failed in their attempt to maintain any of their defence, and after a severely litigated trial of six days, the jury rendered a verdict in favor of the plaintiff and his patent, and found $2,000 damages against the defendants for what they had used the invention during the time between the reissue of the patent and the commencement of the suitleaving them still liable for what they have used it since the commencement of the suit, and also a.r e to be restrained by injunction from further use of it. This verdict also establishes the validity of the patent. For the plaintiff, George Gifford. For the defeudunts, Charles M. Keller and Peter Van Antwerp.
This article was originally published with the title "Important Patent Case"