The Federal Reporter with Key-Number Annotations, Volume 250: Cases Argued and Determined in the Circuit Courts of Appeals and District Courts of the United States, August-October, 1918. Page: 18
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250 FEDERAL REPORTER
prima face showing, and this character of proof was accompanied by
proof of experts that the material in amount and kind and value would
be reasonably needed to accomplish the raising and repairing of the
dredge. The proof was satisfactory to the master and to the District
Judge, and we are satisfied, both with the character of proof permit-
ted by them and with their conclusions as to the aggregate amount of
the cost of raising and repairing the dredge.
With reference to the complaint concerning the amount of demur-
rage allowed the libelant, the evidence of libelant's manager, Crandall,
was that the monthly rental value of the dredge was from $2,500 to
$3,000; that of Ryan, the manager of the D. W. Ryan Towboat Com-
pany, that it was from $1,200 to $1,500. The District Judge allowed
for demurrage $7,500, $2,500 a month for three months. The award
was not based upon profit earned by the dredge but upon its rental
value. It was not allowed for the period the dredge was actually out
of commission, a period of ten months, but only for the period (three
months) which the master and the District Judge ascertained from
the proof was actually necessary for its raising and restoration, if rea-
sonable expedition had been employed to that end by the libelant. The
master allowed the lowest amount testified to by the witness Crandall,
rather than the amount fixed by Ryan, assigning as his reason that
Crandall showed greater familiarity with dredges and their rental val-
ue than did Ryan, and the District Judge approved this finding. The
difference between the values fixed by the two witnesses was $1,000.
We are not willing to disturb the master's conclusion, concurred in by
the District Judge, in view of their better opportunities to determine
as between the two witnesses.
 The master and the District Judge awarded interest upon each
item from the date of payment until the date of final decree, the inter-
est aggregating $4,210.48. The allowance of interest on the award in
collision cases, where the libelant is without fault, is discretionary (The
Itasca [D. C.] 117 Fed. 885; The North Star, 62 Fed. 71, 10 C. C. A.
262), though "the general rule of law, or practice, rather is to allow
interest * * * where the amount of damages is uncertain and is
matter for proof, from the date when they were liquidated; that is,
fixed by judicial ascertainment" (Kelley v. City of Cleveland, 176 Fed.
498, 100 C. C. A. 108). Two circumstances militate against the equity
of allowing interest in this case prior to the date of final decree. The
period of repairs was extended over a period of ten months, when the
proof shows a period of three months should have sufficed. This nec-
essarily postponed the date of the final decree, since the amount of
damages were not ascertainable until the restoration of the dredge was
completed. Again, parts of the dredge were put in better condition
after the restoration than they were before the collision, since the new
replaced the old. This advantage inured to the libelant, without cost to
it, since it was allowed the full cost of replacement. In The Grace
Danforth (D. C.) 97 Fed. 978, interest was disallowed because the Dis-
trict Court found that "the vessel was placed in better condition than
before the collision." We think the equities of this case require the
disallowance of interest prior to the date of the final decree.
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The Federal Reporter with Key-Number Annotations, Volume 250: Cases Argued and Determined in the Circuit Courts of Appeals and District Courts of the United States, August-October, 1918., legislative document, 1918; Saint Paul, Minnesota. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc38821/m1/33/: accessed November 18, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.