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TURNER V. MARYLAND, 107 U. S. 38 (1883)

U.S. Supreme Court

Turner v. Maryland, 107 U.S. 38 (1883)

Turner v. Maryland

Decided February 5, 1883

107 U.S. 38


1. Section 41 of chapter 846 of the laws of Maryland of 1864, as amended and reenacted by chapter 291 of the laws of 1870, provides as follows:

"After the passage of this act, it shall not be lawful to carry out of this state, in hogsheads, any tobacco raised in this state except in hogsheads which shall have been inspected, passed, and marked agreeably to the provisions of this act unless such tobacco shall have been inspected and passed before this act goes into operation, and any person violating the provisions of this section shall forfeit and pay the sum of three hundred dollars, which may be recovered in any court of law of this state, and which shall go to the credit of the tobacco fund, provided that nothing herein contained shall be construed to prohibit any grower of tobacco, or any purchaser thereof, who may pack the same in the county or neighborhood where grown, from exporting or carrying out of this state any such tobacco without having the same opened for inspection; but such tobacco so exported or carried out of this state without inspection shall in all cases be marked with the name in full of the owner thereof, and the place of residence of such owner, and shall be liable to the same charge of outage and storage as in other cases, and any person who shall carry or send out of this state any such tobacco without having it so marked shall be subject to the penalty prescribed by this section."

Under that proviso, no requirement of the act of 1864 is dispensed with except that of having the hogshead opened for inspection. The hogshead must still be delivered at a state tobacco warehouse, and there numbered and recorded and weighed and marked, and be found to be of the dimensions prescribed by statute, and to have been packed and marked as required.

Held: 1. That said section 41, as so amended and reenacted, is not, in its provisions as to charges for outage and storage, in violation of clause 2 of Section 10 of Article I of the Constitution of the United States, as respects any impost or duty imposed by it on exports, or of the clause of Section 8 of Article I which gives power to the Congress "to regulate commerce with foreign nations and among the several states," nor is it a regulation

Page 107 U. S. 39

of commerce or unconstitutional as discriminating between the state buyer and manufacturer of leaf tobacco and the purchaser who buys for the purpose of transporting the tobacco to another state or to a foreign country, or as discriminating between different classes of exporters of tobacco. 2. That the charge for outage thereby made is an inspection duty within the meaning of the Constitution, and it is not foreign to the character of an inspection law to require every hogshead of tobacco to be brought to a state tobacco warehouse. 3. That dispensing with an opening for inspection of the hogsheads mentioned in the proviso does not, in view of the other provisions of the tobacco inspection statutes of the state, deprive those statutes of the character of inspection laws.

2. The characteristics of inspection laws considered with references to the legislation of the American colonies and the states on the subject.

3. Quaere, is it not exclusively the province of Congress to determine whether a charge or duty, under an inspection law, is or is not excessive.

4. The charge for outage in this case appears to be a charge for services properly rendered.

Error to the Court of Appeals of the Maryland. The case is stated in the opinion of the Court.

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