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Maurer v. Sciver

May 29, 1936

MAURER ET AL.
v.
VAN SCIVER ET AL.



Appeal from the District Court of the United States for the Western District of Pennsylvania; Robert M. Gibson, Judge.

Author: Buffington

Before BUFFINGTON, DAVIS, and THOMPSON, Circuit Judges.

BUFFINGTON, Circuit Judge.

This patent case concerns scenery-forming paper, for seasonal or Christmastime decoration, in the formation of miniature mountains and the like. Prior to this patent, mountain effects, tunnels, etc., were made by the use of interior forms or supports covered over with canvas or other substance and painted to represent mountains.The making of such ornaments necessarily involved labor and expense. They were difficult to ship, and consequently their use was restricted, in Christmas decorations, to those who were able to pay corresponding prices. All this was changed by the invention in suit.

What the patentees did is described in the specification:

"The leading object of the present invention is to provide novel scenery-forming paper in flat sheets or strips capable of being manufactured in roll form for sale by the yard, which paper is sufficiently pliable to permit shaping by hand to produce miniature mountains, tunnels and the like without the employment of braces, frames or similar supporting structure. A further object of the present invention resides in the provision of novel scenery-forming paper in flat sheets or strips the surface of which is so treated that when the paper is rumpled, creased, bent or otherwise manipulated by hand realistic scenes may be produced symbolic of mountain peaks covered with snow, portions produced symbolic of grass, portions produced symbolic of mineral deposits and other portions produced symbolic of rocks. A still further object is to provide scenery-forming paper of the character stated which may be readily manufactured to retail at small cost and which possesses the further economic feature that it may be smoothed out, formed into a roll and reused as occasion may arise."

The patentees' application was promptly rejected by the Patent Office, which stated:

"Claims 1 to 6 inclusive, are rejected on any of the following patents:

"Glock, 459,066, Sept. 8, 1891.

"Replogle, 238,527, Mar. 8, 1881.

"Wilmsen, 1,217,675, Feb. 27, 1917, 41-10.

"Clark, 224,388, Feb. 10, 1880, 41-26.

"While applicants' paper has a slightly different design it is held that this feature would ...


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