Feuerstein (defendant) foreclosed on Ernest Kalb’s (plaintiff) Wisconsin farm. The foreclosure action occurred in Wisconsin county court. The county court entered a judgment of foreclosure, and the sheriff sold the property to Feuerstein. Kalb then filed for relief under the Bankruptcy Act. While Kalb’s bankruptcy petition was still pending in federal court, the Wisconsin county court granted Feuerstein’s motion to confirm the sheriff’s sale. Kalb did not seek a stay in any court. Subsequently, the sheriff ejected Kalb from the farm. After being ejected from his home, Kalb filed suit in state court against Feuerstein seeking cancellation of the sheriff’s foreclosure sale and to remove Feuerstein from the premises. The trial court dismissed Kalb’s complaint for failure to state a claim. Kalb appealed. The Supreme Court of Wisconsin affirmed, holding that Kalb’s petition under the Bankruptcy Act did not automatically create a stay of the state foreclosure action. The United States Supreme Court granted certiorari to review.