Memorial campaign launches September 17, 2020
The Dred Scott Heritage Foundation invites the global community to help us fund a new memorial and educational site at the gravesite of Dred Scott, the plaintiff in the infamous 1857 Supreme Court case, Scott V. Sandford.
For more than a decade, Dred and Harriet Scott, with the help of friends and supporters, fought for freedom by means of established law. The U. S. Supreme Court decision on March 6, 1857, claimed that Dred Scott was not a citizen of the United States and therefore had no right to bring suit in the federal courts. That decision caused a public outcry throughout the country and helped to spark the Civil War.
Dred Scott died of tuberculosis in 1858. For safety reasons, he was buried in an unmarked grave at Wesleyan Cemetery in St. Louis, at Grand and Laclede avenues near the St. Louis University. In 1867, Scott’s remains were moved to another unmarked grave in Calvary Cemetery in St. Louis. In 1958 due to the efforts of Reverend Edward Dowling, a Jesuit priest from Baden, MO and descendants of Scott’s original owner, Peter Blow, a modest gravestone was placed at Scott’s final resting place.
The Dred Scott Heritage Foundation hopes to continue the work of recognizing the Scott Family’s place in history and to inform future generations about what African Americans endured in their fight for freedom and justice.
Now in 2020, we propose to build an educational memorial at Dred Scott’s gravesite that will showcase important historical information, making it a place worthy of pilgrimage for students and lovers of American history.
We invite you to contribute to this commemorative project that honors a man who:
• laid in an unmarked grave for nearly a century due to threats to his dead body
• reflects one of the most shocking and unfortunate interpretations of the U.S. Constitution
• was the catalyst for 13th, 14th, and 15th Amendments, aka the Dred Scott Amendments
• died on Constitution Day, September 17, 1858.
Thank you for giving and for sharing this opportunity to honor this man and acknowledge an essential history as we walk forward in hope, helping to create a better tomorrow.