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Hampton v. North Carolina Pulp Co.

49 F. Supp. 625 (1943)

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Hampton v. North Carolina Pulp Co.

United States District Court for the Eastern District of North Carolina

49 F. Supp. 625 (1943)

Facts

Since 1911, W. R. Hampton (plaintiff) had owned two tracts of land on opposite sides of the Roanoke River, known as the Kitty Hawk and Slade Fisheries. Hampton claimed that he and his ancestors had placed and maintained expensive equipment to catch fish in the river. Hampton also claimed that fish migrated from the ocean and into the Roanoke River’s freshwater spawning grounds. North Carolina Pulp Co. (defendant) owned a boundary on the Roanoke River below Hampton’s property. Fish had to pass through North Carolina Pulp’s boundary during their annual migration to the spawning grounds before reaching Hampton’s property. Hampton alleged that North Carolina Pulp manufactured sulfate pulp and that it discharged a large volume of poisonous and deleterious waste and matter into the river. Hampton alleged that this injured the fish, interrupting and diverting the annual migration upstream, and that large quantities of the fish had been destroyed, hurting Hampton’s business. Hampton sued North Carolina Pulp for $30,000, alleging the wrongful diversion and destruction of fish in the Roanoke River. North Carolina Pulp filed a motion to dismiss for failure to state a claim.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Meekins, J.)

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