On September 3, 1941, 20th Century Lites, Inc. (20th Century Lites) (plaintiff) agreed to lease neon sign installations to Herman Goodman (defendant). Goodman made monthly payments under the lease until August 1942. On August 5, 1942, the Government of the United States issued an order prohibiting all outside neon or lighting equipment between the hours of sunset and sunrise. Goodman thereafter sought to have 20th Century Lites remove the signs and to have the contract terminated. 20th Century Lites refused. Beginning September 1, 1942, Goodman ceased making payments. 20th Century Lites brought suit. The trial court found that the purpose of the contract had been frustrated and that, consequently, both parties were excused from performance. Goodman appealed.