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Silvestri v. South Orange Storage Corp.

Decided: June 19, 1951.

JENNIE SILVESTRI, PLAINTIFF-RESPONDENT,
v.
SOUTH ORANGE STORAGE CORPORATION, DEFENDANT-APPELLANT



McGeehan, Jayne and Wm. J. Brennan, Jr. The opinion of the court was delivered by Jayne, J.A.D.

Jayne

The stipulation of counsel representing the appellant and the respondent reveals the mutually acknowledged facts which have occasioned the present litigation.

Obviously the transaction to which attention is invited created between the parties the relationship of bailor and bailee. It is within that typical field of the law that the review of the instant case is undertaken. The appellant is not a common carrier of goods. It conducts a storage warehouse at No. 219 Valley Street in the Village of South Orange, New Jersey.

On April 10, 1946, the defendant-appellant submitted to the plaintiff-respondent a memorandum entitled "Storage Proposal" which was executed on behalf of the warehouse company. The plaintiff subscribed her signature to the memorandum beneath the words "Gentlemen: I accept your proposal and the rates and conditions enumerated above."

The proposal so submitted and accepted contained the following:

"Storage subject to conditions named on Non-Negotiable Warehouse Receipt to be issued as follows:

CONDITIONS

Unless a greater value is stated herein, the depositor declares that the value in case of loss or damage, whether arising out of the storage, transportation, packing, unpacking, fumigation, cleaning or handling of the goods, and the liability of the Company for any cause for which it may be liable, for each or any piece or package and the contents thereof, does not exceed and is limited to fifty dollars or for the entire contents of the Van does not exceed and is limited to $2,000 upon which declared or agreed value the rates are based, such depositor having been given the opportunity to declare a higher valuation without limitation in case of loss or damage from any cause which, would make the Company liable and to pay the higher rates thereon.

This contract represents the entire agreement of the parties hereto, and is made with the agreement as to the rates and conditions as enumerated, and only an officer of the Company has the power to modify the terms of this contract, and then only by a writing signed

by him; and the Company shall not be bound by any promise or representation at any time made, unless made in writing and signed by one of said officers."

The plaintiff did not declare excess valuation, which she was privileged to do, and retained in her possession a copy of the memorandum to which both she and the company had subscribed.

On April 12, 1946, in pursuance of the agreement executed on April 10, 1946, the company accepted from the plaintiff for storage a number of designated articles of household furniture and furnishings among which was a Westinghouse refrigerator, and issued to her a ...


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