Gott v. Berea College
Kentucky Court of Appeals
161 S.W. 204 (1913)
In September of 1911, Gott (plaintiff) purchased a restaurant located across the street from Berea College (defendant). Berea College was a private college, supported entirely by private donations and its endowment, that enrolled and educated students of limited means. The college enacted rules and regulations for its student body, including a rule that prohibited students from visiting places of “ill refute, liquor saloons, gambling houses, etc.” In the summer of 1911, the college, in accordance with its charter, modified its rules and regulations to prohibit students from visiting “eating at houses and places of amusement….not controlled by the [c]ollege.” The college enacted this rule because its students came from rural areas and were from poor families, and certain rules were necessary in order to prevent students from wasting money and keep them focused on their education. Due to its location, Gott’s restaurant’s mostly served students from the college. Once the college enacted the rule against visiting restaurants, Gott’s restaurant lost a significant amount of business. Gott filed a lawsuit against the college, alleging that the college’s administration had conspired against him in enacting the rule and had slandered him. The trial court dismissed Gott’s case, and Gott appealed.
Rule of Law
Holding and Reasoning (Nunn, J.)
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