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Contracts Keyed to Kuney
Anderson Brothers Corp. v. O’Meara
Citation:306 F.2d 672 (1962).
The Anderson Brothers was a Texas corporation in the business of constructing pipelines. O’Meara was an oil well driller. In early 1955, the Anderson Brothers began fabricating a dredge to perform submarine trenching and, in particular, to cut narrow trenches in rocky areas. The Anderson Brothers intended to use the dredge to lay a pipeline across the Missouri River. The dredge, however, was not completed in time and was advertised for sale in a magazine. In December 1955, O’Meara saw the advertisement. O’Meara was looking for a dredge to dig canals (sweep dredging) to an offshore oil well site in southern Louisiana. On December 8, O’Meara contacted the Anderson Brothers and learned the price of the dredge was $45,000. Terms were discussed and the Anderson Brothers accepted O’Meara’s offer of $35,000. O’Meara sent an employee named Kennedy to inspect the dredge. Kennedy knew nothing about dredges but inspected the engines. O’Meara then paid the Anderson Brothers $17,500 and agreed to pay the remaining $17,500 over a period of seventeen months. The dredge was delivered to O’Meara on December 11.
On July 10, 1956, O’Meara’s attorney sent a letter to the Anderson Brothers quoting a naval architect’s report that the dredge was not usable for digging canals. The attorney requested $12,000-$15,000 from the Anderson Brothers to make the necessary modifications to the dredge. The Anderson Brothers rejected the offer. On July 23, 1956, the attorney again sent a letter tendering return of the dredge and demanding back the purchase price. The Anderson Brothers again rejected the offer. Thereafter this suit commenced.
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