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American School of Magnetic Healing v. McAnnulty

187 U.S. 94 (1902)

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American School of Magnetic Healing v. McAnnulty

United States Supreme Court

187 U.S. 94 (1902)

Facts

The American School of Magnetic Healing (plaintiff) was a local corporation in the city of Nevada, Missouri. The school taught that the mind of the human race was largely responsible for its ills and was a perceptible factor in treating and curing such ills. The school received approximately 3,000 letters per day, which included checks totaling approximately $1,000 to $1,600 each day. The United States Postmaster General (defendant) determined that the school was conducting a fraudulent scheme through the mail in violation of the Lottery Act. The postmaster general then ordered the local postmaster (defendant) to withhold all mail addressed to the school, stamp the word fraudulent on the mail, and return that mail to sender. The school filed a federal lawsuit and sought an injunction against carrying out the postmaster general’s order. The postmaster general filed a motion to dismiss. The trial court determined that there was no basis for relief in law or equity and granted the motion to dismiss. The school appealed, and the court of appeals affirmed. The school then petitioned the United States Supreme Court for review.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Peckham, J.)

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