The parties to the contract must be clearly described therein.1 The payee must be indicated clearly.2 Thus a promise to an alternative payee is not negotiable.3 However, if the alternative payees are united in interest so that a payment to one is in legal effect a payment to the other, the instrument may be negotiable, as where it is payable to certain trustees or their treasurer,4 or where, at common law, it was payable to a man or his wife.5 The payee may be indicated by the name which he has assumed, or which he has used in business.6 The payee may be pointed out or described without being named expressly.7 A note payable "to the estate of" A,8 or to the heirs of a designated person,9 to the administrators of a designated person,10 or to the "Royal Consulate of Italy,"11 is negotiable. The addition of the word "trustee," to the name of the payee, does not make the payee uncertain.12 A note payable to "bearer" is negotiable.13 A negotiable instrument having the name of the payee blank is treated as payable to bearer.14 A blank for the name of the payee may be filled by a bona fide holder with his own name,15 or the instrument may be enforced without filling the blank, as payable to the order of the person for whom it was delivered.16 If, however, the name of a specific payee has been inserted in a check and then crossed out, such check is non-negotiable.17 If a mistake in the name of the payee has been made, the true payee may show such mistake, and may show that he was the party intended.18

5 In re Continental Engine Co., (Baird v. Smith), 234 Fed. 58, 148 C. C. A. 74; Union In v. Co. v. Epley, 164 Wis. 438, 160 N. W. 175.

6 In re Continental Engine Co. (Baird v. Smith), 234 Fed. 58, 148 C. C. A. 74; Union Inv. Co. v. Epley, 164 Wis. 438, 160 N. W. 175.

7Sheffer v. Fleischer, 158 Mich. 270, 122 N. W. 543. See Sec. 1297, 2349.

8 Rule v. Carey (la.), 159 N. W. 699; School District v. Sheidley, 138 Mo. 672, 60 Am. St. Rep. 576, 37 L. R. A. 406, 40 S. W. 656; Rowan v. Chenoweth, 49 W. Va. 287, 87 Am. St. Rep. 796, 38 S. E. 544.

9 Enneking v. Woebkenberg, (Wis.), 92 N. W. 932.

10 Rowan v. Chenoweth, 49 W. Va. 287, 87 Am. St. Rep. 796, 38 S. E. 544.

11 Rule v. Carey (Ia.), 159 N. W. 699.

12 Indiana Trust Co. v. Byram, 36 Ind. App. 6, 72 N. E. 670, 73 N. E. 1094; In re Reeve's Estate, 111 la. 260, 82 N. W. 912.

1 England. Bank of England v. Vagliano [1891], A. C. 107.

Kentucky. Tevis v. Young, 58 Ky. (1 Met.), 197, 71 Am. Dec. 474.

Minnesota. Mcintosh v. Lytle, 26 Minn. 336, 37 Am. Rep. 410, 3 N. W. 983.

Oklahoma. Randolph v. Hudson, 12 Okla. 516, 74 Pac. 946.

Tennessee. Seay v. Bank, 35 Tenn. (3 Sneed), 558, 67 Am. Dec. 579.

2Bank of England v. Vagliano [1891], A. C. 107; Gordon v. Lansing State Savings Bank, 133 Mich. 143, 94 N. W. 741; Smith v. Willing, 123 Wis. 377, 68 L. R. A. 940, 101 N. W. 692.

3Carpenter v. Farnsworth, 106 Mass. 561, 8 Am. Rep. 360.

Contra, on the theory that "or" means "and" in such connection. Quinby v. Merritt, 30 Tenn. (11 Humph.) 439. So a note to "Chas. B. Whitesell, et al., or order" is non-negotiable. Gordon v. Anderson, 83 Ia 224, 32 Am. St. Rep. 302, 12 L. R. A 483, 49 N. W. 86.

Under the Negotiable Instruments Act a promise may be made to a payee in the alternative. Page v. Ford, 65 Or. 450, 45 L. R. A. (N.S.) 247, 131 Pac. 1013 [citing, Union Bank v. Spies, 151 Ia. 178, 130 N. W. 928].

4 Holmes v. Jacques, L. R. 1 Q. B. 376.

5 Young v. Ward. 21 11l. 223.

6 Medway Cotton Manufacturing Co. v. Adams, 10 Mass. 360.

7 Scala v. Miners' & Merchants' Bank, - Colo. - , 171 Pac. 752; Shaw v. Smith, 150 Mass. 166, 6 L. R. A. 348, 22 N. E. 887.

8 Stern v. Eichberg, 83 111. App. 442; Shaw v. Smith, 150 Mass. 166, 6 L. R. A. 348, 22 N. E. 887.

9 Cox v. Beltzhoover, 11 Mo. 142, 47 Am. Dec. 145.

10 Adams v. King, 16 111. 169, 61 Am. Dec. 64.

11 Scala v. Miners' & Merchants' Bank, - Oolo. - , 171 Pac. 752.

12 Central State Bank v. Spurlin. 1ll la. 187, 82 Am. St. Rap. 511, 49 N. W. Col. 82 N. W. 493; Fox v. Trust Co. (Tenn. Ch. App.), 35 L. R. A. 678, 37 S. W. 1102; Dollar Saving & Trust Co. v. Crawford, 69 W. Va. 109, 33 L. R. A. (N.S.) 587, 70 S. E. 1089.

13 New v. Walker, 108 Ind. 365, 58 Am. Rep. 40, 9 N. E. 386.

14 Manhattan Savings Institution v. Bank, 170 N. Y. 58, 88 Am. St. Rep. 640, 62 N. E. 1079, Fretwell v. Carter, 78 S. Car. 531, 59 S. E. 639.

15 Manhattan Savings Institution v. Bank, 170 N. Y. 58, 88 Am. St. Rep. 640, 62 N. E. 1079; Cox v. Alexander, 30 Or. 438. 46 Pac. 794.

16Rich v. Starbuck, 51 Ind. 87.

17 Gordon v. Lansing State Savings Bank, 133 Mich. 143, 94 N. W. 741.

18Digan v. Mandel, 167 Ind. 586. 119 Am. St. Rep. 515, 10 L. R. A. (N.S.) 785, 79 N. E. 899.

Under the Negotiable Instruments Law, an instrument which, to the knowledge of the maker, is made payable to a fictitious person, is in legal effect payable to bearer.19