Central Hanover Bank and Trust Company (defendant) established a common trust fund, which pools multiple small trusts into one large fund for easier administration. Central Hanover petitioned the court for settlement of its first account as trustee. Beneficiaries of the trust were given notice by publication in a local newspaper in compliance with the minimum requirements of New York banking law. The court appointed Mullane (plaintiff) as special guardian of beneficiaries of the trust who had not appeared in response to the notice, and he objected that the notice was inadequate to provide due process. Nonetheless the court entered a final decree accepting the accounts, and Mullane appealed.