Dred Scott was an enslaved person who was suing for his freedom. His master (an army doctor) had removed him for several years to military bases in two free states of Illinois and Wisconsin and then returned him to the slave state of Missouri. The case reached the Supreme Court in 1856. Chief Justice Roger Taney of Maryland headed the court; Taney supported the South and slavery. The court ruled that blacks "are not included, and were not intended to be included, under the word "citizens" in the Constitution." Therefore Scott had no standing in Federal court. The 7-2 decision polarized further the relations between the North and the South.
Title: A House Divided: Sectionalism and Civil War, 1848-1865
Author: Richard H. Sewell