Shreveport Rate Cases

PETITIONER: Houston, East and West Texas Railway Company et al.
RESPONDENT: United States
LOCATION:

DOCKET NO.: 567
DECIDED BY: White Court (1912-1914)
LOWER COURT:

ARGUED: Oct 28, 1913
DECIDED: Jun 08, 1914

Facts of the case

The Houston, East and West Texas Railroad and the Texas and Pacific Railway were railroad companies operating rail lines between Shreveport, Louisiana and points in Texas. The Texas Railroad Commission mandated that they charge higher rates on freight travelling between Louisiana and Texas than on freight travelling solely within Texas. The Interstate Commerce Commission (ICC) found that the interstate rates were unreasonable and illegally discriminated against freight traffic originating in Shreveport. The ICC established maximum rates and ordered the railroads to fix their intrastate rate schedules. The railroads challenged the order in United States Commerce Court, alleging that the ICC did not have the power to regulate intrastate commerce. The Commerce Court upheld the ICC order. The railroads then appealed to the Supreme Court.

Question

Did the ICC have the power to regulate the railroads' intrastate rates?