On March 6, 1857, the United States Supreme Court issued a landmark decision – ruling that Black Americans were NOT citizens, and thus, cannot sue. It was the case of Dred Scott versus Sandford.
In 1843, Dr. John Emerson died, the owner of Dred Scott and his wife, Harriet. The Scotts sought freedom in the Missouri State Courts, but the courts ruled against them and authorized Dr. Emerson’s widow to continue to own the couple. When Mrs. Emerson later gave her estate, including the Scotts, to her brother, John Sandford, Dred Scott brought suit in federal court.
The U.S. Supreme Court decision on Dred Scott v. Sandford, issued on March 6, 1857, dismissed Mr. Scott’s claim on the grounds that he was property and lacked standing to sue in federal court. The Court’s opinion concluded that Black people could not be citizens under the United States Constitution because, at the time of its signing, they had “no rights which the white man was bound to respect.”
Want to see more? Visit www.HisDreamOurStories.com, a dedication to civil rights through first-hand accounts of those who helped start a movement. Browse through more than 100 interviews or add to the collection by sharing your own story or that of a loved one.
via Youtube Channel