Friday, April 14, 2006
On this date, April 14, 1891, the New York Court of Appeals decides the famous consideration case of Hamer v. Sidway, a staple of contracts casebooks. It's the one where the uncle promises his namesake nephew $5,000 if the young man will "refrain from drinking, using tobacco, swearing, and playing cards or billiards for money until he became 21 years of age." It doesn't sound like much of a deal today, but using the unskilled wage as a measuring stick that $5,000 in 1869 would be worth about $500,000 today.
The opinion in the case was written by Judge Alton Brooks Parker (left), who would become even more famous in 1904 when he was the Democratic candidate for President of the United States against Theodore Roosevelt.