This section is from the book "The Gardener's Monthly And Horticulturist V26", by Thomas Meehan. See also: Four-Season Harvest: Organic Vegetables from Your Home Garden All Year Long.
A San Jose, California, correspondent, says: "A man here gets fruits and vines, etc., from France, and also from the States, and then changes their name in adding his to the known name. Is there not a State that has a law prohibiting such acts, and, if so, which? Or, perhaps, could you let me have it?"
[It is difficult to decide this question. There was a man once arrested and imprisoned in Philadelphia for selling common rhubarb plants under the name of "wine" plants, and pretending that the "wine" plant was something wholly new. Hence he obtained a dollar for a root of the " wine plant," when he could only have got twenty-five cents for it if he had called it rhubarb, or even "pie plant." The conviction was not so much for the new name, as for the name with intent to defraud. Now, if anyone should take common Bartlett pears, and call them Smith's Bartlett, and it could be proved that he intended to make the purchaser believe it was a different variety from the common one, no doubt a conviction for an attempt to get money under false pretenses could be easily obtained. But if he put in as his defence that the pears were of his growth, or were grown for him, and that by Smith's Bartlett pears he only intended to claim a superior growth or character of tree, we do not know why it should not pass as legally as "Smith's Family Flour," "Jones' Family Flour," or any other trade mark.
We take it, an intention to deceive must be shown to make the act illegal. - Ed. G. M].