The Elliptical Suspender Case The United States District Court at Baltimore, Hon. Judge Giles, recently heard the evidence in the case of Chas. H. Cleveland vs. William P. Towles, being an action to recover from the defendant damages laid at one hundred and sixty-five thousand dollars for an alleged infringem ent of the patent granted to Cleveland in the manufacture of what is known as elliptical suspenders. Some six months ago the plaintiff applied to Judge Giles for an injunction restraining Towles from manufacturing or selling the article in question, which was refused; Cleveland then brought suit for the sum above named,, and the case was called for a hearing in November last, but the plaintiff failingito respond, it was continueduntil the present term. Quite a number of witnesses were examined, and the case was argued by wm. Henry Morris, Esq., on behalf of Towles. The plaintiff was represented by the Messrs. Brent. After hearing the testimony, Judge Giles directed that the following issues be tried by the jury: First, whether the patent granted to the complainant is for a new and useful improvement. Second, whether the patent granted to the defendant is an infringement in whole or in part upon the patent of the complainant. Third, whether the defendant hasmanufacturedand vended suspenders in violation of the exclusive right conferred on the complainant by virtue of his patent. The case was then given to the jury, who decided all the issues in tue negativ e, thus establishing the right of Towles to the entire use and profit of the patent under which he manufactures the elliptic suspender. The article manufactured by Towles and that of Cleveland are constructed on entirely different principles. The Towles suspender is illustrated on page 56, Vol. XIX, Scientific American. diamond millstone dress. Judge Olin, of the Supreme Court of the District of Columbia, has rendered a decree, declaring the letters patent of the United States, No. 73,542, granted to Samuel Golayon the 21st of January, 1868, for improvement in millstone dressing, invalid, inoperative, and void as to that part of the alleged invention set forth in the specification in the following words: "The main feature of my invention consists of a cutting tool, armed with a diamond or other hard stone, and so constructed and operating as to pick or cut grooves in millstones by a series of blows delivered in quick succession," and as claimed in the first and third claims. The proceedings in this case were instituted by a bill filed by James T. Gilmore against Samuel Golay Henry B. Sears, assignee, and Sewell Brothers, licensees under Golay's patent claiming that saidGoTay's patent should be declared null and void so far as it interferes with letters patent granted to said Gilmore on the 23d of May, 1863, about five years previous to Golay's patent. Messrs. Kiddle and Laski for complainant; Gifford and Bradley for defendants. ____________ " THE HOOK-HEADED SPIKE CASE" DECIDED. The hook-headed spike case, commenced in 18-11 by Henry Burden, proprietor of the Troy Iron and Nail Factory, to recover damages of Corning Winslow, proprietors of the Albany Iron Works of Troy, fo r the infring e-ment of Mr. Burden's patent upon the machine for the manufacture of railroad spikes, has at lengthb een finally adjudicated, and an award made to the complainant for his damages. The case has been twenty-eight years in the courts, during a large portion of the time, however, in the hands of the late Chancellor Walworth, of Saratoga Springs. It has become one of the causes celebres of the country. It was originally commenced by the late Samuel Stevens, of Albany, and upon his death, Judge Elisha Foote, ex-Commissioner of Pat ents, assumed charge of it for the complainant. The total amount awarded to the complainant, including about 950,000 costs, is $80,000 a very good offset to the water-power suit recently determined against Mr. Burden and in favor of Messrs. Corning Winslow. Chancellor Walworth commenced taking proof on the 5th of April, 1854, and finished and filed his report in May, 1863. In October, 1867, Hon. Wm. D. Ship-man, of New York, was appointed to review and pass upon Walworth's report. His decision, concurred in by Judge Nelson, as stated, has lust been received.
This article was originally published with the title "Patent Cases in Court" in Scientific American 20, 18, 283 (May 1869)