BC: Citations | “13th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution: Abolition of Slavery (1865).” National Archives. http://www.ourdocuments.gov/doc.php?doc=40 (accessed February 7, 2013). “A Slave Named Dred” The History Show 1857. http://www.teachushistory.org/dred-scott-decision/resources (accessed February 5). Lincoln, Abraham. “Speech on the Dred Scott Decision.” TeachingAmericanHistory.org. http://teachingamericanhistory.org/library/index.asp?document=52 (accessed February 6, 2013). McBride, Alex. “Supreme Court History: The First Hundred Years.” PBS. http://www.pbs.org/wnet/supremecourt/antebellum/landmark_dred.html (accessed February 2, 2013). Douglass, Frederick. “What to the Slave is the Fourth of July?” Civil War Trust. http://www.civilwar.org/education/history/primarysources/what-to-the-slave-is-the.html (accessed February 13, 2013). Jefferson, Thomas. "Thomas Jefferson’s Draft of the Declaration of Independence." http://www.vindicatingthefounders.com/library/jeffersons-draft.html (accessed February 13, 2013).
FC: Dred Scott Case
1: Home of the free...Because of the Brave
3: The decision of the Dred Scott Case increased the tensions between pro and anti-slavery forces and added more conflict between the two groups. On March 6, 1857, the Supreme Court ruled that all African Americans weren’t considered citizens of America and therefore couldn’t sue in federal court. This decision ensued more conflict than was prominent under the Missouri Compromise because anti-slavery activists were further angered by the fewer rights given to slaves under the decision. All of the chaos began in 1833 when Dred Scott was purchased as a slave by an American surgeon for the U.S. army, Dr. John Emerson. Emerson moved Scott to a base in the Wisconsin Territory where slavery was banned due to the Missouri Compromise. Scott believed since he was in a free state, he should be considered a free citizen. He was able to lead a successful life and work for the next four years while Emerson was gone. However, when Emerson returned, Scott, his wife, and his children were forced to move to Louisiana and then to St. Louis with Emerson in 1840. When Emerson died just three years later, Scott’s family was left to Emerson’s wife, Eliza Irene Sanford. Scott decided to sue Eliza Sanford in state court after she refused to let his family buy their freedom. Scott tried to reason with Eliza that his family was legally free because they lived in a state where slavery was banned, but Eliza refused to give in. Even though the state court declared Scott free in 1850, John Sanford (Eliza’s brother) took over the affairs of his sister after she got remarried and he appealed the decision to the Supreme Court because he didn’t want to pay back the money owed to Scott. This time, the court ruled in favor of Sanford. Upset by the court decision, Dred Scott filed another lawsuit declaring Sanford’s abuse towards his brother, John F.A. Sanford. The jury told Scott he was unable to sue because he was now a slave under Missouri law. The case was brought to the U.S. Supreme Court in 1856 after Scott appealed it’s decision. Before the case was brought to the Supreme Court, the Missouri Compromise had been repealed, giving pro slavery forces more power.
4: There were many causes, both long and short, that attributed to the Dred Scott Decision. First of all, the Compromise of 1850 was issued in 1850, with hope that the issue of slavery within the territories would be solved. The Compromise proposed the idea of popular sovereignty, where the territory voted whether or not they would become a slave or free state. Additionally, it was stated that slaves couldn’t be brought in or sold through the slave market. What they hoped would finally end the dispute over slavery in the territories, ended up leaving an unresolved answer to whether the territorial legislature was allowed to prohibit slavery before the territory had even reached statehood. This question carried over seven years into the Dred Scott Decision. Additionally, the Kansas and Nebraska Acts of 1854 proposed the idea of popular sovereignty to decide the legality of slavery within the new territories. These Acts proposed the same difficulties as the Compromise of 1850. The Missouri Compromise also made it difficult for slaves who were living in “free states”. In Dred Scott’s case, he believed that living in a free state meant you were free from slavery. In the court debate, the court argued that even though Scott was a citizen of a free state, it didn’t make him a U.S. citizen. Chief justice of the Court, Roger B. Taney was just one of the justices to speak on March 6. He eventually wrote the 7-to-2 majority decision that stated all African Americans were not considered U.S. citizens. Roger B. Taney, as well as the rest of the judges, based their decisions on the Fifth Amendment, which outlawed the federal government from depriving any person of life, liberty, or property unless a law was issued stating otherwise. Taney also argued that they couldn’t agree with Scott’s case or even listen to it because according to Article III of the Constitution, federal courts were only to listen to cases proposed by citizens of the U.S. Besides the declaration that slaves were not U.S. citizens, the Court also ruled that Congress no longer had the power to abolish slavery in the new territories and that slaves couldn’t make themselves free by spending time in a free territory.
5: Although the decision of the case was supposed to settle the conflict over slavery in the new territories, it only intensified the tensions between pro and anti-slavery abolitionists. Pro-slavery forces were thrilled because it was now legal for slaves to be considered property. In contrast, anti-slavery abolitionists were outraged because slavery was growing rather than diminishing. To show their frustration, they decided to strengthen the Republican Party and created violence between themselves and the pro-slavery forces. Their frustration was clearly shown when Abraham Lincoln, a Republican candidate, was chose for president in the 1861 election. Once Abraham was elected and the power was back on the anti-slavery’s side, the Southern states decided that they didn’t want to be part of the U.S. anymore because they were aware that slavery would be outlawed. This decision not only led to the increased tensions between these two groups, it contributed to the start of the Civil War just four years after the decision was made.
6: Dred Scott 1795-1858
7: This is an image of Dred Scott, a Missouri slave, purchased in 1833 by Dr. John Emerson. Dred Scott was born in Virginia as Sam Scott and was a free citizen until his purchase in 1833. Scott believed it was unfair for him to be a slave in a state where slavery was banned, so he sued his owner, Eliza Sanford. This decision finally made its way to the U.S. Supreme Court after it was appealed by both Dred Scott and one of his owners, John Sanford. On March 6, 1857, when it was declared that all African Americans were not considered U.S. citizens, Dred Scott lost his freedom after an eleven year battle. Although Dred Scott never got to see his freedom, his case impacted the issues regarding slavery, and after the Civil War was over, slavery was officially abolished at last.
8: The Thirteenth Amendment
9: Stars 'n' Stripes Forever | The 13th Amendment was passed and officially ratified by the correct amount of states on December 6, 1865. For U.S. citizens, this amendment symbolized the end of the fight over slavery between the north and the south. Slaves like Dred Scott were finally able to be free citizens of the United States. Although Dred never got to experience this freedom, his case helped to convince others that slavery was indeed wrong. This amendment also turned the decision in the Dred Scott Case from a losing one to a victorious one. Although slavery was still present after the amendment was passed, the number of slaves reduced dramatically and the northern forces felt a sense of accomplishment.
10: Cover Sheet Dred Scott Case 1857
11: The cover sheet summarized the disposition of the Dred Scott Case by the United States Supreme Court in 1857. Chief Justice Roger B. Taney read the majority opinion of the Court, which stated that black people were not citizens of the United States and, therefore, could not expect any protection from the federal government or the courts. The opinion also stated that Congress had no authority to ban slavery from a federal territory. The decision was overturned by the 13th and 14th amendments to the Constitution, which abolish slavery and declare all persons born in the United States to be citizens.
12: “We believe, as much as Judge Douglas, (perhaps more) in obedience to, and respect for the judicial department of government. We think its decisions on Constitutional questions, when fully settled, should control, not only the particular cases decided, but the general policy of the country, subject to be disturbed only by amendments of the Constitution as provided in that instrument itself. More than this would be revolution. But we think the Dred Scott decision is erroneous. We know the court that made it, has often over-ruled its own decisions, and we shall do what we can to have it to over-rule this. We offer no resistance to it.” | June 26, 1857 Speech by Abraham Lincoln
13: This is an excerpt from Abraham Lincoln’s Speech on the Dred Scott Decision. Lincoln questions the decision of the case in this speech. He states that he not only wants future cases to be decided based on their Constitutionality, rather than the slave themselves, but that he also strives for a united country. Abraham Lincoln focused on equality in the country as a whole rather than equality within each individual. Since Abraham Lincoln was a northern abolitionist, he was against the decision proposed by the case because it gave slaves few rights.
14: “Upon these considerations, it is the opinion of the Court that the Act of Congress [Missouri Compromise] which prohibited a citizen from holding and owning property of this kind in the territory of the United States north of the line therein mentioned is not warranted by the Constitution, and is therefore void; and that neither Dred Scott himself, nor any of his family, were made free by being carried into this territory; even if they had been carried here by the owner with the intention of becoming a permanent resident.” | Opinion written by Chief Justice Roger B. Taney 1857 | Dred Scott
15: This is an excerpt from the decision in the Dred Scott Case written by Chief Justice Roger B. Taney. In his opinion, he states that all slaves are not U.S. citizens because they have been bought by their masters and are considered property to Taney. Taney also states that Dred was never a free citizen because the Missouri Compromise was not legal according to the Constitution. Roger B. Taney expresses a view from a pro-slavery activist and explains why slavery is necessary in the country in his opinion. | John Sandford | Vs.
16: U.S. Supreme Court Justices
17: This is a picture of the Supreme Court officials, all of which participated in the decision of the Dred Scott Case. Chief Justice Roger B. Taney and Justice Benjamin Curtis were just two key figures that influenced the outcome of the case. Many of the Chief Justices agreed with the opinion given by Taney, stating that it was hard to take Scott's side in the case since he was a slave. Additionally, the court officials unanimously decided that even if Scott was a free man, it didn't allow him to be a citizen of the United States. The court officials were also influence by Benjamin Curtis's strong dissent regarding the case. Although they didn't realize it at the time, the Chief Justices' decision to keep slavery in the country led to the American Civil War and the eventual abolishment of slavery five years after that.
18: Family, Fun, Food and Fireworks | The Missouri Compromise of 1820
19: This is a map of the United States under the Missouri Compromise of 1820. This compromise was made to settle the dispute over whether or not the Missouri Territory should be slave state or a free state. All citizens knew that admission of the Missouri Territory as a slave state would unbalance the ratio of slave and free states, and therefore the southern forces would dominate. Thankfully, Henry Clay made a compromise plan in which the Missouri Territory got to remain a slave state as long as Maine was able to join the Union as a free state to maintain the balance. Also, all states south of the 36' 30 latitude line were considered slave states, while those North were considered free states. The Missouri Compromise proposed challenges when new territories were added to the United States. These territories had a difficult time deciding whether to be a free or slave state. This made things especially hard for Dred Scott. He believed that since the territory he was living in was free, he should be considered free. However, the Supreme Court said he was still a slave, even if he was living in a free area.
20: This, for the purpose of this celebration, is the 4th of July. It is the birthday of your National Independence, and of your political freedom. This, to you, is what the Passover was to the emancipated people of God. It carries your minds back to the day, and to the act of your great deliverance; and to the signs, and to the wonders, associated with that act, and that day. This celebration also marks the beginning of another year of your national life; and reminds you that the Republic of America is now 76 years old. I am glad, fellow-citizens, that your nation is so young. Seventy-six years, though a good old age for a man, is but a mere speck in the life of a nation. Three score years and ten is the allotted time for individual men; but nations number their years by thousands. According to this fact, you are, even now, only in the beginning of your national career, still lingering in the period of childhood. I repeat, I am glad this is so. There is hope in the thought, and hope is much needed, under the dark clouds which lower above the horizon. | "This celebration also marks the beginning of another year of your national life; and reminds you that the Republic of America is now 76 years old. I am glad, fellow-citizens, that your nation is so young. Seventy-six years, though a good old age for a man, is but a mere speck in the life of a nation. Three score years and ten is the allotted time for individual men; but nations number their years by thousands. According to this fact, you are, even now, only in the beginning of your national career, still lingering in the period of childhood. I repeat, I am glad this is so. There is hope in the thought, and hope is much needed, under the dark clouds which lower above the horizon." | "What to the SLave is the Fourth of July?" Speech by Frederick Douglass July 5, 1852
21: Frederick Douglass gave this speech to the president and all citizens of the United States to explain the relationship between slaves and the Fourth of July. He mentioned that the country had only been free for seventy-six years, so there was bound to be disputes. He also said that they should try not to fight a bloody battle since they just fought in the American Revolution to get their peace. Frederick Douglass wanted the slaves to be free and believed there was a peaceful way to accomplish this. Being a former slave himself, Frederick Douglass clearly shows empathy towards other slaves. This speech shows a viewpoint on slavery from an abolitionist. Frederick Douglass wanted Dred Scott to be victorious in the case. It was support from abolitionists like Douglass that helped overturn the decision made in the case.
22: Harriet Scott 1820-1876
23: Harriet Robinson was the wife of Dred Scott, and a slave as well. Together, Harriet and Dred had two children; Eliza and Lizzie. They met at Fort Snelling.After Dred's request to buy his family's freedom was denied by their current owner Irene Emerson, Harriet was the one who convinced Dred to file petitions in court. After all the court cases, their ownership was transferred from Mrs. Emerson to Taylor Blow, a son of one of the former owners of Dred Scott. He signed freedom papers for the Scott family, but Dred died of tuberculosis not long afterwards. Harriet continued to live in St. Louis, doing laundry and ironing, until her death.
24: "Under the pretense of supporting the Constitution, but in violation of its most valuable provisions, your citizens have been arrested and imprisoned upon no charge, and contrary to all forms of law; the faithful and manly protest against this outrage made by the venerable and illustrious Marylanders to whom in better days, no citizens appealed for right vain, was treated with scorn and contempt; the government of your chief city has been usurped by armed strangers; your legislature has been dissolved by the unlawful arrest of its members; freedom of the press and of speech, of the Federal Executive, and citizens ordered to be tried by a military commission for what they may dare to speak." | Lee's speech to Maryland Citizens Fredericktown, September 8, 1862
25: This document is a proclamation given to the people of Maryland. It was given right before the Northern Virginia army began to invade Maryland. This invasion erupted into the Battle of Antietam. It was addressed to the people of Maryland in the year 1862. Lee's proclamation announced to the people of Maryland that his army had come "with the deepest sympathy [for] the wrongs that have been inflicted upon the citizens of the commonwealth allied to the States of the South by the strongest social, political, and commercial ties ... to aid you in throwing off this foreign yoke, to enable you again to enjoy the inalienable rights of freemen." Lee was angered that Maryland wasn't receiving rights given to all U.S. citizens. He believed it was due to Northern representation in government. Lee decided to join with Maryland to fight for not only equal rights for the South, but for slavery as well. Since this speech is written from the viewpoint of a pro-slavery activist, you can see the hatred towards the Northern forces. It was these pro-slavery forces that contributed to the overall decision of the case.
26: "That on the first day of January, in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and sixty-three, all persons held as slaves within any State or designated part of a State, the people whereof shall then be in rebellion against the United States, shall be then, thenceforward, and forever free; and the Executive Government of the United States, including the military and naval authority thereof, will recognize and maintain the freedom of such persons, and will do no act or acts to repress such persons, or any of them, in any efforts they may make for their actual freedom." | Emancipation Proclamation January 1, 1863 By Abraham Lincoln
27: Although this proclamation was issued in the middle of the war, it ensured that all slaves residing in any part of the United States were officially free citizens of the United States. It also allowed slaves to be members of government and to serve as military officers. This proclamation, along with the Thirteenth, Fourteenth, and Fifteenth Amendments, all helped to overturn the decision made in the Dred Scott Case. Even though Dred was already free at this point, the Proclamation gave slaves just like himself the freedom they deserved.
28: “he [the king of Britain] has waged cruel war against human nature itself, violating it’s most sacred rights of life & liberty in the persons of a distant people who never offended him, captivating & carrying them into slavery in another hemisphere, or to incur miserable death in their transportation thither. this piratical warfare, the opprobrium of infidel powers, is the warfare of the CHRISTIAN king of Great Britain. determined to keep open a market where MEN should be bought & sold, he has prostituted his negative for suppressing every legislative attempt to prohibit or to restrain this execrable commerce: and that this assemblage of horrors might want no fact of distinguished die, he is now exciting those very people to rise in arms among us, and to purchase that liberty of which he has deprived them, by murdering the people upon whom he also obtruded them; thus paying off former crimes committed against the liberties of one people, with crimes which he urges them to commit against the lives of another.” | Thomas Jefferson Draft of Declaration of Independence 1776
29: This is a portion of Thomas Jefferson’s draft of the Declaration of Independance. Here, it addresses the topic of slavery. This portion was rejected by the Continental Congress and removed from the final product. Slavery is subtly mention in a few other parts of the Declaration, but never as direct as this part was to be. Even though the Declaration of Independence mentioned slavery, slavery was still prominent in the country until the Emancipation Proclamation in 1863. Dred Scott was supposed to be a free citizen according to the Declaration of Independence. Even though the Declaration didn’t put an end to slavery, it surely contributed to the Emancipation Proclamation. People finally became aware that they were violating what was written in the Declaration.
30: Pictography | 13 Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. http://www.archives.gov/historical-docs/document.html?doc=9&title.raw=13th%20Amendment%20to%20the%20U.S.%20Constitution:%20Abolition%20of%20Slavery Cover sheet to Dred Scott case. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dred_Scott_v._Sandford Dred Scott as a slave. http://americanrtl.org/Dred Dred Scott’s gravestone. http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=1573 Dred Scott painting. http://www.pbs.org/wnet/supremecourt/antebellum/landmark_dred.html Dred Scott portrait. http://www.findagrave.com/ Harriet Robinson Scott portrait. http://www.findagrave.com/ The grave of Harriet Robinson Scott. http://www.findagrave.com/ The Supreme Court. http://www.supremecourthistory.org/history-of-the-court/history-of-the-court-2/the-taney-court-1836-1864/ John Sandford goes to court with Dred Scott. http://www.xtimeline.com/evt/view.aspx?id=375925
31: Citations | McPherson, James M. Ordeal by Fire: The Civil War and Reconstruction. New York: The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc., 2001. Taney, Chief Justice Roger B. “Columbia American History Outline.” Columbia University. http://caho-test.cc.columbia.edu/ps/10279.html (accessed February 2, 2013). The Declaration of Independence. The Second Continental Congress. July 4th, 1776. The Learning Network. “March 6, 1857 | Supreme Court Issues Dred Scott Decision| NY Times.com.” http://learning.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/03/06/march-6-1857-supreme-court-issues-dred-scott-decision/ (accessed February 3, 2013). Lee, R.E. “Lee’s Proclamation to the People of Maryland.” Civil War Trust. http://www.civilwar.org/education/history/primarysources/lees-proclamation-to-the.html (accessed February 13, 2013). “Missouri Compromise; 1820.” http://teachers.henrico.k12.va.us/tucker/strusky_m/webquests/VUS6_madisonmonroe/MissouriCompromise.html (accessed February 13, 2013).