Quimbee logo
DMCA.com Protection Status
From our private database of 18,400+ case briefs...

Eastern Railroad Presidents Conference v. Noerr Motor Freight Inc.

United States Supreme Court
365 U.S. 127 (1961)


Beginning in the 1920s, railroads and truckers were competing directly in the market for long-distance transportation of heavy freight. The Eastern Railroad Presidents Conference, an association of presidents from 24 railroads, retained the public relations firm of Carl Byoir & Associates, Inc. (defendants). Together, the defendants mounted a public-relations campaign to undermine the trucking business and promote the interests of railroad operators. The Pennsylvania Motor Truck Association (PMTA) (plaintiff) was a trade organization representing 41 trucking businesses (plaintiffs). The PMTA mounted its own defensive public-relations campaign. The PMTA also sued, alleging that the defendants’ anti-trucking public-relations campaign violated the Sherman Act. Specifically, the PMTA alleged that the defendants’ campaign caused the governor of Pennsylvania to veto the Fair Truck Bill, a piece of legislation supported by the trucking industry. The PMTA sought damages resulting from the governor’s veto, as well as injunctive relief preventing further public attacks. The defendants filed a counterclaim substantially similar to PMTA’s original complaint, attacking the PMTA’s own publicity campaign. The district court held that the defendants’ publicity campaign violated the Sherman Act, because it was misleading and specifically aimed at destroying a competitor. In contrast, the district court found the PMTA campaign reasonable and essentially defensive in character. The district court awarded nominal damages to PMTA and entered a broad injunction against further anti-trucking publicity campaigns. The defendants appealed.

Rule of Law


Holding and Reasoning (Black, J.)

What to do next…

  1. Unlock this case brief with a free (no-commitment) trial membership of Quimbee.

    You’ll be in good company: Quimbee is one of the most widely used and trusted sites for law students, serving more than 496,000 law students since 2011. Some law schools—such as Yale, Vanderbilt, Berkeley, and the University of Illinois—even subscribe directly to Quimbee for all their law students. Read our student testimonials.

  2. Learn more about Quimbee’s unique (and proven) approach to achieving great grades at law school.

    Quimbee is a company hell-bent on one thing: helping you get an “A” in every course you take in law school, so you can graduate at the top of your class and get a high-paying law job. We’re not just a study aid for law students; we’re the study aid for law students. Read more about Quimbee.

Here's why 496,000 law students have relied on our case briefs:

  • Written by law professors and practitioners, not other law students. 18,400 briefs, keyed to 985 casebooks. Top-notch customer support.
  • The right amount of information, includes the facts, issues, rule of law, holding and reasoning, and any concurrences and dissents.
  • Access in your classes, works on your mobile and tablet. Massive library of related video lessons and high quality multiple-choice questions.
  • Easy to use, uniform format for every case brief. Written in plain English, not in legalese. Our briefs summarize and simplify; they don’t just repeat the court’s language.

Questions & Answers

Have a question about this case?

Sign up for a free 7-day trial and ask it

Sign up for a FREE 7-day trial