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Public Ene Mies Considered

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PUBLIC ENE MIES CONSIDERED. Public enemies, as the term is used in this connection, means those with whom the State or nation of the carrier is at open war. But it is not necessary that there should have been a declara tion of war, the actual commencement of hostilities will suffice. Indian tribes in a state of war are public ene mies, so are pirates, and privateers. (Express Co. v. Kountze, 8 Wall. 342.) And now, contrary to the old rule, delay caused by mobs, rioters, strikers, etc., be yond the power of the carrier or the civil authorities to control, will excuse the carrier. But he may not excuse delivery on account of mobs, strikes and the like, as this would give an opportunity for fraud through com plicity with the parties causing the delay.

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