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Missouri v. Illinois (Missouri I)
United States Supreme Court
180 U.S. 208 (1901)
In the 1880s, Chicago was growing rapidly into a large industrial city. However, the city discharged its sewage through the Chicago River into Lake Michigan, contaminating the city’s drinking-water supply. Chronic outbreaks of water-borne diseases plagued the city. Chicago constructed a canal to reverse the river so that it flowed into the Illinois River instead of Lake Michigan. The reversal meant that Chicago sewage wound up in the Mississippi River where it borders Missouri (plaintiff). Missouri brought a nuisance action against Illinois (defendant) in the United States Supreme Court, asserting original jurisdiction based on a controversy between two states.
Rule of Law
Holding and Reasoning (Shiras, J.)
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