Jorgensen Music

U.S. Circuit Court Transcript

 

U. S. Circuit Court Case for the District of Minnesota.  Case D-630.  Theodora Cormontan vs. The Chicago, Milwaukee and St. Paul Railway Company.  Tuesday, October 1, 1889 to Monday, October 6, 1889.

 

Burt Newles [?--the last name is illegible and the first name is unclear], Notary Public for Yellow Medicine County, State of Minnesota, took the depositions of E. O. Lyders [Edward, brother-in-law of Theodora], Mrs. E. O. Lyders [noted as Maria in the deposition but the correct spelling of her name is Marie, younger sister of Theodora], and A. H. Anderson [a witness to the incident] since they lived in Sacred Heart, more than 100 miles from the city of St. Paul.  The three had been subpoenaed on March 26, 1889 by O. T. Ramsland.  Haldor Larson was also listed to give his testimony, but there is no record of that in the file.  It does appear that Larson testified in court the following October.  The depositions took place in the Notary Public's office in Granite Falls on April 4, 1889.  Jno. [John] Arctander represented the plaintiff.  Norris was notified for the defense, but George C. Squires served as counsel for the defense that day.  The law firm of Flandreau, Squires and Cutcheon represented the railroad company at the trial.

The following is a transcription of the deposition of Andrew H. Anderson.  It is handwritten in cursive and not always legible.  Anything inserted to clarify will be placed in brackets [ ].  A few minor editorial changes are included to make the text easier to understand.  

The Notary Public swore in Mr. Anderson and Mr. Arctander began the questioning.

Q            What is your name, occupation, and residence?

  A             A. H. Anderson from the town of Hawk Creek, County of Renville, State of Minnesota.

Q            Do you hold any office of public trust?

  A             County Commission's and Constable.

Q            Do you know plaintiff Theodora Cormontan?

  A             I do.

Q            Did you see her on the third day of December, 1887?  If so, at what place, about what time of day, and under what circumstances?

  A             I came from Montevideo on the third day of December on defendant's passenger train to Granite Falls.  The train was about one half hour late.  As I came to Granite Falls the train of course stopped at the depot platform of Granite Falls station.  I stood up [at the] front end of the ladies car as the train stopped and there I jumped off on to the platform and saw the plaintiff trying to get on to the front platform of the smoker and the brakeman beckoned her to come over to the next car and she did so.  When she got there she got on the rear end of the smoker.  She had one foot on the lower step and one foot on the second step of the car, and then the train started to move.  Then the brakeman came and grabbed hold of her and tossed her back on the depot platform.  I suppose he was a brakeman as he had a brakeman's cap on, he acted as brakeman coming down on the train.  He got hold of her in some shape or other and tossed her back onto the depot platform from the car.

Q            How did she come down on the platform--with what speed and in what manner?

  A             Can't say what speed but think she came down in a pretty gentle fair [?--text is illegible] way in one respect.

Q            State whether she came down suddenly or not.

  A             Well, not so very quick, [?--illegible] pretty quick, not exactly as if she had been thrown off.

Q            What did the train do?

  A             The train started off--went right along.   

Q            Did you go with the train?

  A             No, I got left.

Q            Why did you get left?

  A             I got left because I was standing looking at her getting thrown off.

Q            After the brakeman had put the plaintiff off did he say anything?  If so, what was it?

(Objected to as incompetent, irrelevant and immaterial)

  A             He said to me "You can get on."

Q            What was plaintiff's appearance immediately after this happened?

  A             Well, she looked to be excited.

Q            To what extent?

  A             Couldn't say to what extent.

Q            How far were you away from and in what direction did you look when she stepped on to the car steps and when she was put as you have testified?

  A             I was about between two and three feet, couldn't say which.  I looked towards her.

Q            State whether or no the train was in motion at the time that the plaintiff stepped from the depot platform on to the car steps.

  A             It was not.

Q            State whether or no there was any one else on those steps of that car at the time that the plaintiff went on except the plaintiff and the brakeman.

  A             There was not.

Q            Do you know anyone who was present at the depot platform at the time this happened near the source of the accident?

  A             I do, but don't know the name of them.

Q            Was Holdor Larson there?

  A             Yes, he was there.

Q            Do you know whether or no he was sober or intoxicated at the time?

(Objected as incompetent, irrelevant and immaterial)

  A             He didn't look like he was sober.

At this point the counsel for the defense begins questioning Anderson.

Q            You say that plaintiff had got on to the steps of the car before it started, is that so?

  A             Yes sir.

Q            How did the train start?

  A             It started like passenger trains usually start--it started quietly--there was no jerk about as far as I could see--I was not on it.

Q            Did you see anything that made it necessary for the brakeman to take hold of the plaintiff?

  A             I did not.

Q            Whereabouts did he take hold of her?

  A             Am not quite sure but think he took hold of her by one arm and around the waist.

Q            How did she alight on the platform?

  A             On her feet.

Q            At that time that she alighted on her feet on the platform was the brakeman supporting her with his arms?

  A             No sir.

Q            Where was the brakeman when she alighted on the platform?

  A             He jumped on the front platform of the ladies car.

Q            Then, as I understand you, she did not fall down on the platform at all?

  A             Not that I could see.

Q            Where did she go after she got on the platform after the train started?

  A             I suppose she walked into the depot, I did not see her go in but found her there.

Q            Why didn't you see her if you were only two or three feet away?

  A             I was watching the train.

Q            How long were you watching the train before you looked back to where she was?

  A             I can't say how long.

Q            But when you turned around she had gone into the depot, had she not?

  A             Yes sir, or had got there in some way.

Q            Did you go from Granite Falls that same day with the plaintiff on a freight train to Sacred Heart?

  A             Yes I did.  The passenger train arrived at Granite Falls between 3 and 4 o'clock in the afternoon and the freight train went to Sacred Heart in the evening of the same day.

Q            Did the plaintiff complain of being hurt at all at the time she stepped off the passenger train or while you were on your way to Sacred Heart that evening?

  A             I didn't talk with her on the freight train.  She felt kind of bad in the depot at Granite Falls but she didn't say much to me.  We were not well acquainted; had only met once or twice.

Q            Who did she talk with?

  A             She might have talked to a good many for all I know.  There was lots in the depot.

Q            Did you hear her talk to anyone in the depot at Granite Falls?

  A             To no one except me.

Q            What did she say to you?

  A             She thought it was queer that they would throw her off in that way--wanted to know if I knew any reason for it.

Q            But she didn't complain of being hurt at all, did she?

  A             Not that I heard.

Q            Do you remember of making a statement as to how this accident occurred in the month of May after it did occur [in other words, in May of 1888]?

  A             No sir, I do not.

Q            Do you know Mr. Jno [John] McDonnell?

  A             I have seen him once before at my place.

Q            About when was that?

  A             Am not sure of the time but think it must have been in July because I was hauling hay from a stack--probably it may have been in May.

Q            Did you make a statement at that time of how this accident occurred?

  A             Yes I did, as close as I could get at it at that time, but he [McDonnell] came on to me pretty quick.  I was busy and didn't have time to think.

Q            Did not Mr. McDonnell write down your statement and read it over to you after he had written it?

  A             Yes he did.

Q            And did you not sign the statement after it had been read over to you then and there?

  A             Yes I did.

(Papers shown witness)

Q            Is this the statement you signed and is this your signature?

  A             It is my signature and the statement is all right except one thing--which is that it says that the train started before plaintiff got on the steps and it should state "after she got on the steps."

(The paper referred to by witness is now offered as part of his Cross Examination and is handwitnessed [?--the term is illegible] and marked Exhibit "A."  The language used in this paper may not be the same as used in [?--text is illegible] statement but its meaning is about the same)

Q            As I understand you then this written statement contains a correct statement of what happened in the time of the accident except that you now think that the train was not moving at the time that she got on to the steps of the car?

  A             There is something more than that is wrong.

Q            What else is then wrong about this written statement?

(Witness now reads the written statement again)

  A             The statement doesn't say that she was on the steps, but says that she attempted to get on.  I stated at the time I gave the statement that she was on the steps.  It also says that the brakeman jumped on the near end of the hind coach.  I said that he jumped on the front step of the ladies coach.  And it also says that he took hold of her in a gentlemanly manner.  I don't think he did.  It says that I could have seen if anything happened to her--something might have happened without my seeing it.

Q            Excepting in these particulars which you have mentioned is this written statement correct?

  A             Well, as far as I know it is.

Q            After you had made this statement to Mr. McDonnell in May 1888, when did you next talk about this accident and to whom?

  A             After making this statement I did not talk about it for a long time, until I had thought it further over, and at no time since I made this statement.  I had not thought about it from the time of the accident.

Q            Did you not at that time tell Mr. McDonnell that you had had a letter from the plaintiff's attorney asking you to give a statement of  the facts in the case?

  A             I don't remember--I have so many letters--

Q            When and with whom did you next talk about the accident after seeing Mr. McDonnell?

  A             I talked with a good many of my neighbors.  I can't say who was the first one.

Q            Did you ever talk with the plaintiff about the accident since its occurrence?

  A             No, I did not.  Haven't seen her since that I know of.

Q            When did you first talk with the plaintiff's attorney about the accident?

  A             Today.

Q            When if ever did you write to the plaintiff's attorney about the accident?

  A             June 5th, 1888.

Q            How did you come to write to him?

  A             He wrote to me about a statement as your fellow did and I wouldn't do it.  Thought there was no use in giving statements all around the world and get nothing for it.  I had something else to do.

Re-Direct Examination

Q            This written statement says amongst other things she stepped off the car on to the depot platform.  State whether or no that is correct.

  A             She didn't step off, the brakeman took and heaved [?--the word looks like "heaved" but is unclear] her back on to the platform.  She didn't do it herself.

Q            Did you write this statement to the defendant yourself or is it your handwriting?

  A             No sir, I did not.  He wrote it and read it to me.

Q            Did you read it yourself before you signed it or at that time after you signed it?

  A             I don't recollect whether I did or not.

Q            What is your best impression as to whether you read it or not?

  A             My best recollection is that I did not read it.

Q            When was the talk and where was the paper written?

  A             At my farm in front of the barn on a big rock.

Re-cross Examination

Q            But you have read over the statement now carefully before giving your testimony in relation to it?

  A             Yes.

[The following is a transcription of the statement that A. H. Anderson gave to Mr. McDonnell on May 5, 1888.  It is marked as Exhibit "A."]

I was at C M & St P depot at Granite Falls on Dec. 3, 1887.  I saw Miss Cormontan  when she attempted to get on board the passenger train going east.  She first attempted to get on to forward end of Smoking car, the brakeman called to her to come to the next car which was the Ladies car.  The train was moving at this time, but very slow, just so you could see it move.  Breakman stood on the depot platform.  She came back and attempted to get on rear end of Smoking car.  The breakman took hold of her by the arm in a gentlemanly manner and she stepped off the car on to the depot platform.  She was standing on the first step of the rear end of the Smoking car--she got frightened and stood still on the depot platform.  The breakman jumped on to the hind car.  The train was going slow at this time.  The brakeman called to me and said you get on.  I intended to go on the train but thought the train would stop for the lady to get on, but it did not.  She did not fall and was injured in no way that I could see.  I stood within three feet of her and could have seen if anything happened to her.  I talked with her after the train pulled out.  She did not say that she got hurt, but said that she got scared.  I came  back with her on a freight train the same evening.  She did not say anything to me about being hurt.  I do not think the lady was injured in any way and do not see how she could have been injured.  This statement contains all I know about the matter.  A. H. Anderson.

[The following is a transcription of the deposition of Mrs. E. O. Lyders, taken 4/4/1889.  The Notary Public swore her in and Mr. Arctander began the questioning.]

Q            What is your full name, residence, and your relationship to plaintiff?

  A             Maria [her name is spelled "Marie" but would have been pronounced "Maria"] J. Lyders.  Sacred Heart, Minn. I am a sister to the plaintiff, Theodora Cormontan.

Q            Do you remember the day she was hurt at Granite Falls?

  A             December 3rd, 1887.

Q            Where did she live at the time?

  A             At my house.

Q            How long had she lived in your house prior to the 3rd day of Dec., 1887?

  A             From the first day of June, 1887.  [It appears unlikely that this date is accurate.  The Norwegian newspaper Stavanger Amtstidende og Adresseavis wrote the following [computer translated to English] in its June 2, 1887 edition: "Emigration. The Thingvalla steamship Hekla departed Friday evening from Christiansand to New York with 930 emigrants, including women and children. Of this number 535 (235 Swedes and 300 Danes) boarded in Copenhagen, 275 in Christiania and about 120 in Christiansand. Among the Christiansand passengers were old Provst Cormontan from Arendal and his two daughters."  June 2 was a Thursday in 1887, so it appears the Hekla sailed on Friday, May 27.  This would make it impossible for the three Cormontans to have arrived in Sacred Heart, MN by June 1.  Perhaps Maria (Marie) meant July 1.  Theodora is first mentioned in the August 20, 1887 edition of the Granite Falls Tribune, so she clearly arrived in Sacred Heart in the summer of 1887.]

Q            And how long did she continue to live with you?

  A             To the first of March, 1888.

Q            What was the state of her health prior to the 3rd of Dec., 1887 while she lived with you?

  A             Good.

Q            State whether or no she had or not during the time she lived with you been sick in any way.

  A             No sir.  She could and did walk from three to five miles a day.

Q            Were you at home when she came home on the evening of Dec. 3, 1887 [the document actually says 1888 here] and if so what was her condition then and what was it after then during the time she lived at your house?

  A             She came home in the evening after the light was lighted and looked sick and excited.  She went to bed early, not long after coming home.  She did not sleep in the night from pains, and from that day she grew worse and worse, she could not walk without a cane around the house and could not go out.  She was confined to her bed two or three days as far as I remember at first, and from that time on she was confined to her bed a part of nearly every day, not coming from her bed until noon and some days not being able to at all.  She was not able to go out of the house from this time on as long as she was with me.

Q            Why did she use a cane in walking?

  A             She could not walk without using the cane before her to lean on.  Her [?--an illegible word is omitted here] grew worse and worse until she left my house.

Q            What was her business at the time she got hurt?

  A             Music teacher.

Q            Do you know whether or no she had a large class at the time?

  A             I know she had several pupils.

Q            Do you know whether she could give any lessons after being hurt?

  A             No, she could not.

Q            Where has she been since March first, 1888?

  A             With her brother in Franklin.

Cross Examination

Q            What physician did the plaintiff have while with you?

  A             Not any until we took her to Minneapolis in February to Dr. Jones.

Q            How long was she under Dr. Jones' care?

  A             I don't know.

Q            How long were you in Minneapolis with the plaintiff under Dr. Jones' care?

  A             Seven or eight days.

Q            Did Dr. Jones visit her at your house before she left?

  A             No sir.

Q            Did she go from your house to Franklin?

  A             Yes, she went in a sled.  We had to carry her in the sled.  Franklin is 35 miles from my house.  We had to put pillows around her so she could sit up.

Q            How did she happen to go from your house to live with her brother?

  A             To live with him.

[Then the Notary Public swore in E. O. Lyders for a brief deposition.]

Q            What is your business and place of residence?

  A             Druggist and I live at Sacred Heart, Minnesota and am a husband of the last witness.

Q            What was the general state of health of plaintiff while she lived at your house up to the third day of Dec., 1887?

  A             Good.  She had not been sick or ailing at all during that time.

 

Pierce, Arctander and Nickell, attorneys for the plaintiff, presented a Notice of Trial to W. H. Norris, attorney for the defense, on May 29, 1889.  The trial was originally scheduled to begin on June 11, 1889.  It actually began on October 1, 1889.

The following deposition was taken on September 18, 1889.  It contains the testimony of defense witness  Peter T. Waters by Notary Public F. W. Root.  The defense and the plaintiff were represented by the attorneys that represented them in the subsequent trial.  While he provided a deposition, it appears that Mr. Waters also testified at the trial.

Q            What is your name?

  A             Peter T. Waters.

Q            You reside where?

  A             In Minneapolis, Minnesota.

Q            You were the conductor of a passenger train on the Hastings and Dakota division of the defendant's railroad on December 3, 1887?

  A             I was running a passenger train about that time.

Q            On the arrival of that train at Granite Falls on December 3, 1887, at about one thirty o'clock p. m., did you make a stop at Granite Falls?

  A             Yes, sir; we always stop there for water and at the station.

Q            Did you make the usual stop at Granite Falls at that time?

  A             I would not say as to that--sometimes it was necessary to stop longer than others.

Q            You stopped at Granite Falls that day?

  A             Oh, certainly.

Q            You stopped and unloaded baggage and loaded baggage and express?

  A             Yes, sir.

Q            After that had been done, did you look up and down the platform to see that everything was ready to give the signal to go ahead?

Objected to as leading.  Question withdrawn.

Q            What did you do after you had made the stop there on this day?

  A             After we stopped, I got off the baggage car and walked along the platform and stood there a minute or two, and asked the baggage man if he was ready, and he said "Yes," and I suppose I asked the Express man the same thing, and his answer was "Yes," and after calling "All aboard" twice, I gave the signal to the engineer to go ahead.

Q            Before giving that signal, did you look up and down the platform?

Objected to as leading.

  A             Yes, sir.

Q            Was the train clear before you gave the order to go ahead?

  A             Yes, sir.

Q            At that time you gave the order to go ahead, was there anybody getting on or off the train?

  A             There was not.

Cross examination.

Q            Where were you in reference to the engine when you gave the signal at this particular time?

  A             Right near the baggage car--the second car from the engine.  The mail and express car is the first car--the baggage car is separate.  First express and mail, then baggage car, then the smoker, and then the first-class car--and I stood up at the head end of the baggage car--the end nearest to the engine--when I gave the signal.

Q            Did you stand at this same place from the time the train stopped till you gave the signal?

  A             I came off the hind end of the baggage car and then went to the front end.

Q            Before giving the signal you did not go back to the other cars?

  A             No, sir.  I just asked the baggage man if he was all ready, and he said "Yes."

Q            Have you any distinct recollection of what took place on this 3rd day of December, except just as usual?

  A             No, sir; I have no more distinct recollection of what took place there at Granite Falls on that day than on any other day.

Q            When you testified, then, in regard to what you did and under what circumstances you started the train, you meant only to say, what you usually did?

  A             I know what I did.

Q            Do you know what you did that particular day?

  A             I remember distinctly what I did, because my brakeman called my attention to the occurrence.  The brakeman told me about a lady's falling off the platform.

Q            You did not see anything what took place there at that time?

  A             No, sir.

Q            Then you don't know, of your own knowledge, whether this lady attempted to board this train before or after it started?

  A             No, sir.

Q            When you gave the signal--

  A             No, sir.

Q            Now, from where you stood when you gave your signal, at the front end of the baggage car, could you see down the platform?

  A             Yes, sir.

Q            Could you see on to the platform of the ladies car from where you stood?

  A             No, sir, not the rear platform.

Q            Could you see the front platform?

  A             Yes, sir.

Q            How far from the platform of the baggage car did you stand on the depot platform?

  A             I couldn't tell--it might have been four, five or six feet.

Q            Do you remember distinctly about it?

  A             No, sir.

Q            Do you remember seeing a lady on that day attempting to board the front end of the smoker, and you told her to go down and go to the hind car?

  A             Yes, sir, I recollect that.

Q            That was while you were standing still, wasn't it?

  A             Yes, sir.

Q            And that was before the train was started?

  A             Certainly.

Q            How long after that before you started the train?

  A             I couldn't tell.

Q            After you had told this lady to go to the further car, she came down the platform of the smoker and went down towards the platform of the first class car?

  A             I don't remember.

Q            You don't remember whether this lady went back or not?

  A             No, sir.

Q            Do you know the plaintiff in this action when you see her?

  A             No, sir.

Q            You don't know, from your own knowledge, whether or not this woman was on the steps going up to the platform of the car when you gave the signal to start?

  A             No, sir. 

Redirect.

Q            You say you were standing anywhere from five to six feet back from the train on the depot platform when you gave the signal?

  A             It might have been--probably not so far.

Q            And you looked up to see if the train was clear of passengers before you gave the signal to move?

  A             Certainly, there was time if she got in.

Q            And all you know about the occurrence was what the brakeman stated to you after the train had got some distance beyond Granite Falls station?

  A             Yes, sir--pretty near to Minnesota Falls.

Q            I understand you to say, in answer to the question of plaintiff's counsel, that the brakeman said that the woman didn't fall?

Objected to as incompetent, immaterial and irrelevant.

  A             Yes, sir; that is what the brakeman told me.

Re- Cross Examination.

Q            That train going east that day was considerably late, wasn't it?

  A             I don't remember anything about whether it was late or not.

 

On September 18, 1889, George Arctander traveled to Franklin, Minnesota and served subpoenas to C.G.V. Cormontan and Eivinda Cormontan [brother and sister of Theodora Cormontan].  The next day in Minneapolis he subpoenaed Dr. J. T. Moore and Dr. W. A. Jones [Dr. Jones saw Theodora regarding her injuries in Feb. of 1888.  Dr. Moore and Dr. Jones appear to have been associates at St. Barnabas Hospital in Minneapolis as noted on p. 158 of the Medical Standard from 1891].  Also on the 19th, Jno. Arctander served a subpoena to John P. Flaten [this person is unknown, but was likely a witness] in Dennison, Minnesota.  The next day in Minneapolis he served subpoenas to Geo. A. Arctander [an attorney for the plaintiff--perhaps he was also a witness] and Louisa Lyders [daughter of Theodora's sister Marie].

 

The following is a transcription of the term minutes for the trial.  Editorial comments are in brackets.

United States Circuit Court, for the District of Minnesota.  Term Minutes, June Term. A. D. 1889.  Oct. 1, 1889.  D Law 630.  Theodora Cormanton [sic] vs. Chicago, Milwaukee & St. Paul Railway Company.

Hon. R. R. Nelson, Judge

This cause being regularly called for trial the plaintiff appears by her attorney John W. Arctander.  And the defendant by its attorneys Flandrau, Squires and Cutcheon.  Thereupon upon motion of plaintiff's said attorney it is ordered that a jury come to-wit; Frank Ayd [another document in the file notes the place of residence of each juror.  Mr. Ayd was from St. Paul], Wm. Leip [White Bear], Cyrus Smith [Clearwater], E. H. Judson [St. Paul], Aljer Rines [Princeton], Henry C. Taylor [Lakeland], P.H. Weiss [it is not clear what town Mr. Weiss was from--perhaps he was a rural resident], Oscar Tourson [Castle Rock], W. S. Crawford [Morristown], J. W. Eastman [Minneapolis], Henry Smith [St. Paul], and George R. Holmes [not clear--perhaps rural], twelve good and lawful men who are duly sworn to try the issues joined herein.

And the trial of the same is proceeded with as follows;

John W. Arctander opens the case for the plaintiff.

C. Bolenback is sworn and examined on behalf of the plaintiff. [This is probably the interpreter hired for the first day of the trial.  This person is referred to as "Baumback" in other documents in the case file].

Theodora Cormontan sworn and examined through the interpreter on her own behalf.

And the trial of said cause not being concluded at the hour of adjournment it is ordered that further proceedings herein be and they are hereby postponed until tomorrow morning at 10 o'clock.

 

October 2, 1889

This day again come the parties herein by their respective attorneys and the jury sworn to try this cause.  There upon the further trial of the same is proceeded with as follows, to-wit;

Gert Gjertson is sworn as interpreter.

Eivinda Cormontan is sworn and examined through the interpreter on behalf of the plaintiff.

And the trial of said cause not being concluded at the hour of adjournment it is ordered that further proceedings herein be and they are hereby postponed until tomorrow morning at 10 o'clock.

 

October 3, 1889

This day again come the parties herein by their respective attorneys and the jury sworn to try this cause.  There upon the further trial of the same is proceeded with as follows, to-wit;

John B. Flaten sworn and examined for plaintiff.

Geo. A. Arctander sworn and examined for plaintiff.

C. G. V. Cormontan sworn and examined for plaintiff.

Dr. W. A. Jones sworn and examined for plaintiff.

Louisa Lerdero sworn and examined for plaintiff.

Dr. J. T. Moore sworn and examined for plaintiff.

And the trial of said cause not being concluded at the hour of adjournment it is ordered that further proceedings herein be and they are hereby postponed until tomorrow morning at 10 o'clock.

October 4, 1889

This day again come the parties herein by their respective attorneys and the jury sworn to try this cause.  There upon the further trial of the same is proceeded with as follows, to-wit;

O. Quereman sworn and examined for plaintiff.

J. A. Berkey sworn and examined for plaintiff.

And here the plaintiff rests.

Thereupon C. E. Flandrau opens the case for defendant.

C. A. Sibley sworn and examined for the defendant.

J. A. Weaver sworn and examined for the defendant.

P. H. White sworn and examined for the defendant.

H. Larson sworn and examined for the defendant.

Ernest Gilmore sworn and examined for the defendant.

Thomas Kemp sworn and examined for the defendant.

John Blake sworn and examined for the defendant.

W. K. Hopkins sworn and examined for the defendant.

Miss Carrie Peterson sworn and examined for the defendant.

Dr. J. A. Stone sworn and examined for the defendant.

Dr. C. E. Riggs sworn and examined for the defendant.

And here the defendant rests.

And the trial of said cause not being concluded at the hour of adjournment it is ordered that further proceedings herein be and they are hereby postponed until tomorrow morning at 10 o'clock.

October 5, 1889

This day again come the parties herein by their respective attorneys and the jury sworn to try this cause.  There upon the further trial of the same is proceeded with as follows, to-wit;

Eivinda Cormontan recalled and examined on behalf of plaintiff.

Theodora Cormontan recalled and examined on her own behalf.

And here both parties rest.

C. E. Flandrau sums up for the defendant.

J. W. Arctander sums up for the plaintiff.

The court instructs the jury and they retire to consider of their verdict with the instructions that if they agree upon a verdict before the incoming of Court Monday [the next day being Sunday] they shall place the same under seal and return it into Court by their Foreman.

 

[The following is a transcript of the defendant's requests to charge to the jury before their deliberation.  All three charges were delivered to the jury]:

1st.        The plaintiff cannot recover in this action unless the jury find from the evidence that the defendant was guilty of some negligence which was the cause of the plaintiff's injuries.

2nd.       The plaintiff cannot recover in this action if the jury find from the evidence that the plaintiff was guilty of any negligence which contributed to the infliction of any injury which she may have received.

3rd.        If the jury find from the evidence that the plaintiff attempted to get upon the train when the same was in motion, and such attempt in any way contributed to produce her injuries, she cannot recover and your verdict must be for the defendant.        

Continuation of Term Minutes. October 7, 1889

This day come the parties herein by their respective attorneys, and the jury in this cause having been heretofore instructed by the Court and retired to consider of their verdict, now after due consultation concerning the same and being fully advised in the premises, they find and return into court by their foreman their sealed verdict in the words and figures as follows, to-wit;

"We the jury in the action of Theodora Cormontan, plaintiff, vs. the Chicago, Milwaukee and St. Paul Railway Company, defendant, find for the plaintiff in the sum of Five thousand dollars ($5,000.00).  John W. Eastman, Foreman, Oct. 5, 1889."  [Note that the jury reached its verdict in the time remaining on the previous Saturday--October 5-- after Eivinda and Theodora had been recalled and both attorneys had presented their summations.]

It is therefore considered ordered and adjudged by the court that the above named plaintiff do have and recover of and from the above named defendant the aforesaid sum of Five thousand dollars ($5000) so found to be due by the jury besides her costs and disbursements herein to be taxed, and that she have execution therefor.  Thereupon, upon motion of defendants attorneys it is ordered that execution herein be and it is hereby stayed for a period of forty-two days with leave to present a motion for a new trial.

Post Trial

The defense did not ask for a new trial but they did challenge some of the court costs charged to them, including fees charged for mileage for the interpreters, some charges related to the depositions taken for the plaintiff, and the cost of a drawing used to illustrate a point for the plaintiff.  This last objection was allowed.

The defendant was left to pay for the clerk's fees, the notary fees, and all the witness fees for the plaintiff.  Eivinda  and C. G. V. Cormontan were both given credit for devoting 16 days to the trial and for traveling 210 miles. Witness John P. Flaten also was credited for 16 days. Louisa Lyders was credited for 14 days and 20 miles (she was 18 and attending school in Minneapolis at the time); and Drs. Jones and Moore, as well as Geo. Arctander, for 12 days.  Other witnesses required fewer days, with A. H. Anderson, E. O. Lyders, and Marie Lyders all credited with one day for their depositions.  Including the fees for the interpreters, docket fees, and the fees related to the depositions, the total cost was $311.85.  It appears the final bill, including the principal and interest as well as all fees, came to $5535.57, and was paid in full by The Chicago, Milwaukee and St. Paul Railway Company on Nov. 21, 1889.

 

 

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