This book contains 53 nineteenth century American legal cases in which courts discussed accounting issues. Some are well known: Wood v. Drummer (1824) was the foundation for the idea that capital could not be returned to shareholders and it was this restriction which made it necessary to distinguish between income and capital. The famous case of 1849, Burnes v Pennell is often cited as the source of the rule that dividends cannot be paid except from profits. However, many of the cases covered in this book are not well-known. It is often assumed that few American legal cases on accounting matters were decided in the nineteenth century. However, many of the 53 cases included here preceded the earliest British legal cases that discussed accounting issues and they are interesting for several reasons. They show that government regulation of accounting pre-dated the modern regulatory ear. They also illustration that sometimes private contracts specified a particular accounting treatment and that accounting, therefore, served to define private rights. They also illustrate that American courts discussed accrual accounting problems as early as 1837 and that a cash concept of profits was not the norm.
Table of Contents
Introduction. 1. Wood v. Drummer (1834) 2. People ex rel. Commercial Insurance Company of the City of New York v. The Supervisors of the City and County of New York (1836) 3. De Peyster v. The American Fire Insurance Company (1837) 4. Scott v. The Eagle Fire Company (1838) 5. People ex.rel. McMaster & Harvey v. The Board of Supervisors of the County of Niagra (1842) 6. Gratz v. Redd (1843) 7. Barry v. Merchants Exchange Co (1844) 8. Sagory v. Dubois (1846) 9. State of Maryland v. Baltimore and Ohio Railroad Co (1847) 10. Lexington Life, Fire and Marine Insurance Co. v. Page (1856) 11. Carpenter v. The New York & New Haven Railroad Company (1857) 12. Ford v. Locust Mountain Coal and Iron Company (1868) 13. Commonwealth v. The Ocean Oil Company (1868) 14. Commonwealth v. Penn Gas Coal Company (1869) 15. Pittsburgh and Connellsville Railroad Company v. The County of Allegheny (1870) 16. Meserve v. Andres (1871) 17. Gray v. Darlington (1872) 18. Richardson v. The Vermont and Massachusetts Railroad Company (1872) 19. St. John v. Erie Railway Co (1874) 20. Tutt v. Land (1873) 21. Main v. Mills (1874) 22. Eyster v. Centennial Board of Finance (1874) 23. Grant v. Hartford and New Haven Railroad Company (1876) 24. United States v. Schillinger (1876) 25. Whitney Arms Co. v. Barlow (1876) 26. Davis v. Flagstaff Silver Mining Company of Utah (1877) 27. Union Pacific Railroad Company v. The United States (1878) 28. People v. Vail (1879) 29. Van Dyke v. McQuade (1881) 30. Little Miami & Columbus & Xenia Railroad Co. v. United States (1883) 31. Williams v. Western Union Telegraph Company (1882) 32. Jennery v. Olmstead (1885) 33. Park v. Grant Locomotive Works (1885) 34. Barry v. Missouri, Kansas & Texas Railway Co (1886) 35. Fitzpatrick v. Dispatch Publishing Co. (1887) 36. People v. San Franciso Savings Union (1887) 37. Mackintosh v. Flint & Pere Marquette Railroad Co. (1888) 38. Marks v. Monroe County Permanent Savings & Loan Assoc (1889) 39. Richardson v. Buhl (1889) 40. Hubbard v. Weare (1890) 41. Excelsior Water and Mining Co. v. Pierce (1891) 42. United States v. Central Pacific Railroad Company (1891) 43. Conville v. Shook (1893) 44. Whittaker v. Amwell National Bank (1894) 45. Tradesman Pub. Co. v. Knoxville Car Wheel Co. (1895) 46. Witherow v. Slayback (1895) 47. Wing & Evans v. Slater (1896) 48. San Diego Water Company v. City of San Diego (1897) 49. Dykman v. Keeney (1897) 50. Washburn v. National Wall-Paper Co (1897) 51. Milwaukee Electric Railway & Light Co. v. City of Milwaukee (1898) 52. People ex. Rel. The United Verde Copper Co. v. Roberts (1898) 53. Davenport v. Lines (1899).
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