Quiz time: What’s more absurd than a lawsuit over the ownership of a dead dog?

You should read the earlier articles to relish the profound craziness of this feud over Queen, “a valuable varmint dog.” The case began in 1905 (1904?) and rumbled through the courts even after the pooch was killed in the Great Earthquake. Judge Seawell finally ruled in 1907 on who owned Queen, ordering Mr. Peterson to pay Mr. Frese $25.00 (heaven knows what all the legal bills were by this time). But even though the question of ownership of a deceased dog was settled, the courtroom combat began again in 1908 over a new crucial legal issue: Who owned her puppies? “There is a whole lot of principle as well as dogs mixed up in this case,” a wag remarked to the Press Democrat court reporter.

“The Dog Suit” Still on the Tapis and “The Pup Suit” Is Yet to Figure in Legal Annals

The end is not yet. The dead “Queen” is to be resurrected and her good points extolled once more in legal oratory in Judge Seawell’s department on the Superior Court. Not only that but the recovery of her progeny is to figure in another battle in the hall of justice. The latter consists of two well developed pups.

“Queen,” it will be remembered, has been dead nearly two years now. About the time of the earthquake this now celebrated canine expired from shock, leaving two little puppies to shift for themselves. “Queen” — the dead one–was alive when the litigation started, in which J. H. Frese figures as plaintiff and U. G. Peterson is defendant.

It was for the recovery of the dog that the first suit was brought. It started in the Justice Court some three years ago and from there went on appeal to the Superior Court, where it has been on trial and in many other phases since. Last Monday the suit of Frese vs. Peterson came up on a motion for a change of judgment and was set down for hearing next Monday by Judge Seawell.

Attorney Thomas J. Butts, who is counsel for the plaintiff, stated yesterday that he is going to bring another suit against the defendant for the recovery of the offspring of the deceased “Queen.” They are said to be very valuable dogs. “There is a whole lot of principle as well as dogs mixed up in this case,” someone ventured yesterday. It might be added that it costs something, too.

– Press Democrat, February 8, 1908

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