POLLOCK v. FARMERS' LOAN & TRUST CO.
The Constitution gave the states the power to impose direct taxation. The federal government could impose direct taxes as well, but only if those taxes were apportioned among the states in proportion to their representation in Congress. In this case the Court examined a national income tax passed by Congress in 1894. This case was decided together with Hyde v. Continental Trust Company of the City of New York.
Was the income tax a direct tax in violation of the Constitution (Article I, Section 9)?
Yes. The Court held that the act violated the Constitution since it imposed taxes on personal income derived from real estate investments and personal property such as stocks and bonds; this was a direct taxation scheme, not apportioned properly among the states. The decision was negated by the adoption of the Sixteenth Amendment in 1913.