March 6, 2017 all-day

Dred Scott. Oil on canvas by Louis Schultze, 1888. Acc. # 1897.9.1. Missouri Historical Society Museum Collections.

6 March 1857. This was the most famous US Supreme Court decision during the prewar slavery controversy. Dred Scott, a slave, had successfully petitioned for his freedom based on his previous residence in a free state and territory. On this date the Supreme Court overturned Missouri’s Supreme Court decision and declared the 1820 Missouri Compromise unconstitutional. Chief Justice Roger Taney wrote that slaves were property, not citizens, and that Congress had no power to restrict slavery in the territories.

Image courtesy of commons.wikimedia.org,

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