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View of Fourth Street looking north from Market Street. Old Courthouse is at the left, on the northwest corner of Fourth and Market.

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Identifier: N36832

Title: View of Fourth Street looking north from Market Street. Old Courthouse is at the left, on the northwest corner of Fourth and Market.

Description: View of Fourth Street looking north from Market Street. The Planter's Hotel is in the distance, at Fourth and Chestnut. The Old Courthouse is at left, on the northwest corner of Fourth and Market. Slaves were sold on the steps of the Old Courthouse prior to the Civil War. The Old Courthouse later was the site of two pivotal Civil Rights cases. The court's most famous case was that of Dred and Harriett Scott, two African Americans who sued for their freedom in 1847. The Scott case was ultimately decided by the U.S. Supreme Court, which ruled in 1857 that slaves were property and therefore could not sue. The Supreme Court's decision forced the Scotts back into slavery and increased friction between abolitionists and pro-slavery forces in a crucial period leading up to the Civil War. A lesser-known case that was heard in the Old Courthouse is the Virginia Minor case. Virginia Minor was a leader in the women's suffrage movement in Missouri. She and her husband Francis sued a local election official when she was denied the opportunity to register to vote in the 1872 election. The Minors used the recently ratified 14th Amendment to make their case, claiming that women were citizens and should therefore be granted all rights as citizens, including the right to vote. Minor needed her husband to co-file the suit because married women were not allowed to sue in Missouri until 1889. The Minor case also was decided by the U.S. Supreme Court, which ruled in 1874 that the right to vote was neither goverened by the U.S. Constitution nor automatically granted along with citizenship.

Rights:

Place:

Dates: ca. 1890s

Type(s): Photograph
Image

Maker/Creator: Emil Boehl

Subjects: Downtown (Saint Louis, MO)
Horse-drawn carriages
Pedestrians
Commercial buildings
Public architecture
Tobacco industry

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http://collections.mohistory.org/resource/143805

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