The Dred Scott Decision and Its Bitter Legacy

In a rare 1846 freedom suit, Dred and Harriet Scott sued their master for their own freedom as well as their daughters’. The resulting appeals and rulings that pushed the suit to the Supreme Court marked a turning point in the years leading up to the Civil War, calling into question issues of slavery, freedom, and states’ rights. Take a look at the next digital exhibition in Gilder Lehrman’s Black History Month initiative, created through a partnership with the Google Cultural Institute.

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