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CONCLUSION

    It may be urged that the condition specified in the defendant’s order that the plaintiffs would guarantee the delivery of the goods within the time specified added nothing of substance to the agreement, because if the offer was accepted the acceptance itself would involve this obligation on the part of the plaintiffs. The other condition specified by the defendant cannot be disposed of in the same manner. That provision of the defendant’s offer provided that the offer was conditional upon the receipt of the order being promptly acknowledged. It embodied a condition that the defendant had the right to annex to its offer. The import of this proposal was that the defendant should not be bound until the plaintiffs signified their assent to the terms set forth. When this assent was given and the acknowledgment made, this contract was then to come into existence and would be completely expressed in writing. The plaintiffs did not acknowledge the receipt of this order and the proposal remained unaccepted. As the party making this offer deemed this provision material and as the offer was made subject to compliance with it by the plaintiffs it is not for the court to say that it is immaterial. When the plaintiffs submitted this offer in their letter of April 4th to the defendant only one of two courses of action was open to the defendant. It could accept the offer made and thus manifest that assent which was essential to the creation of a contract or it could reject the offer. There was no middle course. If it did not accept the offer proposed it necessarily rejected it. A proposal to accept the offer if modified or an acceptance subject to other terms and conditions was equivalent to an absolute rejection of the offer made by the plaintiffs. …
    […]
    …There are, we think, valid objections to the position assumed on this point by the learned Appellate Division.

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