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DISTRICT COURT.

ASHBURTON— MONDAY. (Before His Honor Judge Ward.) OIVIL SITTINGS. JEB3OK v Wriobt, olalm £152 lOi. Mr J. A. OjygM for plaintiff, Mr 0. W. Purnell for defendant. In this case, David Jebson, a mine manager, sought to reoover from Edward Fond! Wrfght, coalpit proprietor, the sum of £152 10a nnder the following circumstances: — Plaintiff averred (1) That about the month of Jane, 1887, he contracted with defendant to obtain coal from th? la'ter's pit at Mount Somera and that ho entered uponand continued to carry out thia contract up to January $1, 1888. (2) That outside the duties devolving upon plaintiff u:)der tfais contraot, he from time to time, at tho request, and for the benefit of defendant, performed certain work, vi?,, surveying the mine and making a plan, keeping books of accounts and doing olerlcal work, also extra work on tho tram (3) That about January 26, 1889, plaln» lff extracted with defendant for the haulage of oal from the pit, for a period of one mont»-, for the sum of £3 per week. Plaint ff carried out bis con tract up to February 1 when he w«s prevented by defendant from its further psrfornnnce, (4) That on February 1 defendant unlawfully anil vio'en ly assaulted and beat plaintiff, whereby the latter Buff red great pain of body and mind. Plaintiff therefore claimed an payment and compensation m respect of tho various matters set forth, the 6um of £152 10a, made up as follows :— Surveying mine and making plan, £10 10s ; keeping books of accounts, and extra olerioal work, 17 moathsat£4 per month, £68 ; extra work on tram, during 12 weeks at £1 per week, £12 ; haulage of coal dorink one month, £12; damages for assault and batt >ry, £50. The defendant denied all the material allegations m the first paragraph of plaintiff's particulars of demand. He denied that plaintiff did the work mentioned la the second paragraph, or any part thereof, at the request and for tha benefit of defendant, and further < said that if plaintiff did suoh work he had been duly paid for it. As to the contract for haulage of coal, defendant averred that the oontract was entered into about . tb © e ?J o* Junuary, 1889, and that plaintiff commenced work on Februar) 1. Plaintiff showed himself iaoompetent and careless m the performance of his duties. aDd upon defendant requesting him tfj perform hin dutteß m a proper manner plaintiff abandoned his work aod Refused to fulfil the contraot. Defendant denied having assaulted or beaten the plaintiff, SJ g by -^J*]**' and b«denieS that be was indebted to him m the sum clamed or any part thereof. Defendant filed a set-off for £5 for five weeks* rent of a oottage at Mount Somera that had been oooupied by plaintiff. /, The following jury was sworn In-IJ-J. R Bli°on D (toTem * a )' *• Nokei » P- »•«, P £ p S \°l °* Ued « vW «noßas,foUqwat k D * r j d . J«b»on/ ihs pltlnt ff, Bt ld thai He had been a mine manager for a eonslderable number of years. About 29th. Jaae, 1887, he ooatc«o,e<3 with; defendant to work tha mioejind to take out the ooal at a price per ton. The contraot wm reHueed to writing some time, In November. as far as wltoeia recolleoted. Wltneia bad done all the surveying m connection with the mines. The survey was necessary to comply with the Mines Act. He made a plan of the working!, and did what surveying was necessary. To ness's knowledge there were no ot h ef planß of the mine m exUtenoe. . witnaE. considered be was entitled to C«iO 10. fnZ the labor involved by mak^^Se « r vey and plan. In regard tVthe book keening hnT B W? t t0 *?** a *»«* »*d wa/bilf book. Witness » a .d to makeoufoonJignment notes tor orders, where necessary, he had to teoelve cash from cash easterner?, be bad occasionally to advise consignees. »o one had been appointed by defendant to attend to the customers, and this work devolved on witness. If witness had refused to do thla work, defendant would have had to appoint somebody, and h» could not have got anyone for less than 30a or £2 per week. la attending to thfa work witness lost a great deal of time la the performance of his oontrtbt. Defendant regularly saw the books kept br witness. . , By His Honor; Witness did thU work from the very flcst, and had never made any olalm for it. 3 . The witness gave evidence m regard to the agreement, whioh. it now eppeared, was signed m September, instead of November as previously stated by witness The extra work on tram, claimed for by witness, consisted m tbe haulage of coal Mr Wright paid a man for the wprk, "a witness helped this man. Thiarl»Vnan average occupied three, or t~££fz per day, and witness had #- JSSmIrS own hack to ride ba<jk.t- .^PJ?^J. h » load had been W- ; °l he v ? !*» w te.* other man wm *.» ato tne klln8 « T* 18 On JanZy |?^' d J Q a d 7 '1" ? £1 ?' to witneii. r ! " lh » 1889 » def «ndant wrote coaT ft? offering him the haulage of the •dim*" ' a Ironth at £3 P er weelp* anj yF" uge done to the trucks to be deducted. ~ itness accepted this offer, but declined to be held responsible for any accidental damage Defendant agreed to witness's stipulation and witness started work on January 29 He continued work tl)l,Feb 1. On that day defendant askad witness to take certain things to the new manager. Witness had forgotten the towropVand defendant said that was a " one-eyad.way of doing business," They proceeded to shuat tne trucks, snd defendant made a> remark that witness should not speak to him. Witness csked defendant who he was that he jhonld not be spoken to, and defendant thereupon ttruok him twjoe oa tha eyes and nose and face. Witness then left the work. In regard to th* amount of £5 claimed by defendant for rent of cottage, witness got a notice on February 12 to leave the oottage before the end of the week or he would bt> oharged £1 a week. . Witness waa out of the cottage on February 22. v By Mr Purnell: Witness held no certificate as a mine manager under the> Mines Aot. Witness did exaejtjy th* same work before the agreement Waa signed, as he did subsequently, He had monthly settlements with defendant. -He never made any demand at any of these, settlements for payment on account 'of tB» book keeping and clerical work he now claimed for. Defendant strongly complained about the quality of the coil witness was sending out. He ui4 fee wat losing customers In oonsequtnoe «nd hi* soHoltor wrote to wltnee. th»eatenlri» an, action. Wltnes» was told that If he did not quit the colliery by the end of Jane a writ would be limed. Witness admitted the coal was not of the qusllty It a hould be, but better could not be turned out for tho nv,ney. The upshot was that a fresh arrangement was come to between witness aod defendant. Defendant did not take the managemoDt of tha mine into His own hands under the new arrangement, but he direoted witness where to take out the coal. Witness did not to his knowledge tell defendant he would take no further responsibility. Previous to June, 1887 witness received 3a 6d a torn, and had to pay the men's wages. Ha. told defendant he oould not work at that rate and defendant agre d to guarantee* the men s wages and witness' « tn«k«r. v fcubsequent to June, defendant at tho. monthly settlements gave witness th* money for the wigea and gavo witness & lump sum.for uivaeolS. About the middle; or January Jaat defendant guve witoess « fortnight* uo-.ico.to quit. Witne-awa UOt.Hojrioubly hurt by tao usaaulc he ha bia[ohco)s cut, and a piece ikn'oqkadJQqt

his nose. Witness was not prepared to swear that he did not use any bed language towards defendant iust before the assault ; lie did not recollect. In regard to the bookeeplng for wbioh wit new claimed, some cf the entries In the diary were In penoll. Seme days he haa no entries to make. The averr.ge nombc-r of entries would be three or four per day. Meking out the railway consignment notes was the principal clerical work. Sometime* he made out one, sometimes two or three consignment notes In a day, sometimes none at all. The waybills might aver%ge one a day *, witness coald not b iy. It was necessary for witness to keep o diary for his own protection In getting payment for the ooa! be got cut. Defendant nerer give witness instracMon to make the plan. The pau was still m wttnaat' yoißeialon. HU Honor : Then why is Mr Wrlglr asked to p»y for It. Witness continued that It was not neceiswy for him to have a plan for his own purposes while working the mine. {Two plans were produced.) Wt'ness said that one had been made since he left defendant's employ. He made it beca the other was net on drawing paper). Witness did not remember grumbling »t the October settliDg-up, that be was not veeelvlng enough pay and that be would clear out. Did not remember defendant telling him that he might clear out. Witness had had the use of a cottage and tome land from the defendant. • By Mr Gaygill : Witness wrote to defendant last April, Buying that he was entitled to £50 for exta work done. The prcdnction of the letter was asked for, Mr Purnell taid that defer dant had received no such letter. The copy of a reply by^ plaintiff to a letter from defendant giving him six months' notice was read. Paintift offered if paid £50 as compensation to leave at once. Plaintiff also wrote to Mr Parnell m- reply to a letter from that gentleman commenting on his working of the mine, apd stated that he won d go away if reasonable compensation were allowed him. C. E. Fooke, authorised surveyor, was called to give evidence as to the value of eorvey done and plan prepared by plaintiff, but His Honor ruled that the evidence was not necessary as plaintiff had no claim on this point. He was. not lnr rooted to prepare the plan, and farthe-m>r£ he had retained possession of it, having only used it for bis own suedomc. Me OayglU argued at some length that plaintiff had a claim for the survey and pl*n, bob his Honor ruled against him. j3amuel McOllmont was at Mount rftaaers railway statloa on February 1. He fieard some high words and looking Out of the shed where he was be law Jebson with his hands up. Wright went towards him and then went back. Witness next saw Jebaon rlsa up and go towards defendaot, who seemed to retire a few steps. Defendant then went op to Jebaon and struck him In the fsoe. Only •aw one blow itruok. Did nut see Jebsoo strike any blowr. The blow etruck by defendant appeared to have been a pret'y hard one at witness two minutes after- ■ wards saw blood running from Jebson's nose. Witness was aboat foar chains from the occorrenoe. Witness had been jit the pit several times during the past months. Jebson seemed to have .charge of the pit. He always attended m w!tn«u and did what elerloal work was Herbert Jebson, son of the p'alntiff, had worked with his father at the coal pit. On February 1 witness was at the Mount ■ fioeaers goodshed. He flaw defendant walk an to witness' father and strike blm. Defendant walked back a few steps, wit ness* father rose up, defendant came forward again and struck another blow. Wltueis' father had a maik below bis eye, and another on his nose, as a consequence of the affair. Witness saw only the two blow sstruok. This witness gave evidence W to the work on the tramway for which tMCfcoaived wages at the rate of 5s a day for ta&W coal from the pit to the lime- 1 fclln. His father helped him for about two hows -on each day on wbioh a trip wss made. This was plaintiff's cese. . Mr Purneli opened the case for the defecce. He submitted that it bad been .shown from the evidence of the plaintiff himself that, with the exception of the ■elahp for assault, n ne of the items ot bis «lalm«rould hold water. He called the! following evidence : — E. F. Wright, the defendant said he was the proprietor of the Mount Bomers «olliery. Witness made an arrangement urith Jebson to get oat the coal. Jebßon -was to provide labor and deliver the coal m tram trucks outside the mine at 3s 6d Sr ton. Jebson made entries iv the | try. and made out wsy bills, etc, from rthe first The manager previous to .Jebson d'd similar work without extra - pay. The agreement was reduced to writing on September 19 b, 1887 There lad bee.stnonthl? settlements previous to this, snd p'aintifE never made any claim for the clerical work. It was usual m f£iall mines for the manager to dp such wor*** '* ne ** me occn pi e d by this work would £<>t average five minutes per . day. After the jJ^ement had been a gned they continued to have monthly settlements. Jebson never Maimed- at any of these •ettiements. In Jhe month of April witness complained to Jebson of the way to which he had carried £>vt his contract, rubbish being put oat wjth the coal. Witness then entered fat* a fresh arrangement with plaintiff, who made no claim for the clerical work. The new arrangement watf that the mine was to be tinder witness's abtolnte control, plaiotiff, to work under his directions. There was do agreement as to wages, but witnesß paid plaintiff a lump aom at the end of each jaontb, this ' payment being In settlement of all claims. As for plain tlfi's claim for extra trork on the tram, he was pat to that work because trade was alsck In the mine m summer, and he was put on the tram to £11 op time, and was paid as usual In the Aootbly settlements. The work was not MUlalde the scope of plaintiff's duties, and tkhe first claim for it was m the present ■nomonc*' At the end of October plaintiff demnrred at the amount he was receiving, and tald that b 6 would leave. Witness told htm to name a day on which to dear oat. Plaintiff dM not names <J»y, bat continued m witness' employ ; Jn the middle of January witness gave $laku!ffa fortnight's notice to quit. He left ion January 31st as far as the coalpit was «onoerned, bat entered on a special co.ntract for hamllog, Under this contraot be would have to employ labor and would make About 30s a week. Plaintiff started uader ibis contraot on Februaoy Ist. He made some demur abont taking stuff up because It was raining. Witness said it was neoesiary he should go. Plaintiff tbec took witness's horse to chant some railway trucks attaoblng the trace chalus to the tract* This was not the proper thing to do, ana plaintiff should have had a tow rope at the side, if the horse had slipped it wculd have keen hort Witness told Jebson that it was no way to do the work Jebson said he knew a d— eight more about shunting tracks than witness ever did, and ha would do it his way. Jtbion's demeanor was insolent and irritating and witness struck bfm. Witness did not ' strike him a violent blow. Jebson picked ' tip a big boulder, whish he dropped, however, and put up bis fists when witness struck him again. Jebson then said he would not work an? longer s&d left the place. In February witness gave plaintiff notice to leave the cottage he was then occupying at tbe end of the week. Jebson did not leave at tbe end of that week, bat continued to occupy till the end Of the pext, jfeft pitting,

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Permanent link to this item

http://paperspast.natlib.govt.nz/newspapers/AG18890311.2.18

Bibliographic details

DISTRICT COURT., Ashburton Guardian, Volume VII, Issue 2084, 11 March 1889

Word Count
2,683

DISTRICT COURT. Ashburton Guardian, Volume VII, Issue 2084, 11 March 1889

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