Dred Scott lived in both free and slave states and territories. As
you read through his travels, find each location on the map and state
whether the area was free or slave. The first map shows the boundaries
of the Missouri Compromise, but you might also find the current map of
the United States that follows helpful.
Scott was born in Virginia around 1799. His master was Peter Blow.
- In 1830, Scott and Blow moved from Alabama to Missouri.
- Dr. John Emerson, a surgeon in the U.S. Army, bought Scott and moved him to Rock Island, Illinois in 1834.
- In 1836, Scott and Emerson moved to Fort Snelling, Wisconsin
Territory. Fort Snelling was on the west side of the Mississippi River,
north of thirty-six degrees thirty minutes north latitude, and north of
Missouri. Today this location is in the state of Minnesota. Emerson
bought a slave named Harriet and Scott married her with Emerson's
consent in 1836.
- In 1838, Emerson and the Scotts moved to Missouri. The Scotts had
two daughters, Eliza, born around 1843, and Lizzie, born around 1850.
- Emerson died in 1843, and he left his possessions, including the
Scotts, to his widow. Mrs. Emerson moved and left her brother, John
Sanford, in charge of her estate. The Scotts lived in St. Louis,
Missouri when they sued Sanford, who had moved to New York.
- Scott sued Sanford because he claimed that Sanford held him
illegally. Scott claimed that he had become a free man as soon as he
lived in a free territory or state. He claimed that he was taken against
his will to a slave territory or state.
Question to Consider
- Name the territory and/or state where Scott believed he had become a free man.