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st louis courthouse today

Battle of Malvern Hill, Virginia

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Struggle at the Bridge of Antietam

AN INSPIRING HISTORICAL FICTION DRAMA SCRIPT BASED ON SCOTT V SANFORD, THE (7-2) U.S.SUPREME COURT RULING READ BY CHIEF JUSTICE ROGER TANEY ON MARCH 6,1857 THAT STATED THAT NEGROES-WHETHER FREE OR SLAVE-ARE NOT UNITED STATES CITIZENS BY THE CONSTITUTION. ADDITIONALLY, THE NORTHWEST ORDINANCE OF 1787 COULD NOT CONFER CITIZENSHIP OR FREEDOM TO NEGROES WITHIN THIS TERRITORY. AND FINALLY, THE 1820 MISSOURI COMPROMISE PROVISION DISALLOWING SLAVERY NORTH OF MISSOURI EXCEEDED CONGRESSIONAL POWER AND THUS, THIS PORTION OF THE LEGISLATIVE ACT WAS NULL AND VOID. AS A RESULT DRED AND HARRIET SCOTT WITH THEIR CHILDREN (ELIZA AND LIZZY) HAD NO JURISDICTIONAL POWER TO UTILIZE THE FEDERAL COURTS TO OBTAIN FREEDOM OR CITIZENSHIP. THIS RULING SET THE STAGE FOR THE LINCOLN-DOUGLAS DEBATES OF 1858 AND THE CIVIL WAR. HARRIET SCOTT’S TREMENDOUS SUPPORT OF HER HUSBAND, DRED, IN HIS FREEDOM SUIT, FIGHTING TO KEEP HER FAMILY TOGETHER, AND THE UNENDING PLIGHT TO HAVE HER DAUGHTERS LIVE”FREE”IS A REMARKABLE TRIBUTE TO WOMEN AND MANKIND. THE STORY BEGINS AT FORT SNELLING IN WISCONSIN TERRITORY IN MAY 1836 WHERE DRED AND HARRIET SCOTT ACTUALLY MEET.

AUGUST 1, 1847 DRED WOW! I CANNOT BELIEVE WE LOST THAT TRIAL ON WHAT THE JUDGE CALLS “HEARSAY.” HARRIET THE ATTORNEY SAID THAT OUR PROOF OF BEING SLAVES BY THE DEPOSITION OF SAM RUSSELL WASN’T GOOD ENOUGH. IT WAS SECOND HAND KNOWLEDGE EVEN THOUGH EVERYONE KNEW WE WERE HIRED SLAVES. historical plaque at eugene field house

DRED THERE WAS NO DIRECT EVIDENCE PRESENTED TO THE COURT THAT WE WERE SLAVES, THAT IRENE OWNED US AND LOANED US OUT TO THE WHOLESALE GROCER SAM RUSSELL. IT WAS A DEAL BETWEEN IRENE AND MRS. RUSSELL. HARRIET WELL, YOU DIDN’T SEE MRS. RUSSELL OR IRENE JUMP OUT AND ADMIT WHO OWNED US AND THAT WE WERE IN BONDAGE AND LENT OUT AS A MACHINE OR PROPERTY.

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DRED NO, OF COURSE NOT. THE TRIAL IS ABOUT WHO WINS-NOT WHAT IS RIGHT. EVERYONE IN THAT COURT ROOM KNEW WE WERE SLAVES. WE’VE NEVER NOT BEEN SLAVES. AND EVERYONE KNEW WE WERE BORROWED SERVANTS TO THE RUSSELLS WORKING IN THEIR GROCERY BUSINESS. HARRIET NO ONE WANTED TO OFFEND IRENE AND HAVE HER LOOKED DOWN UPON BY ST. LOUIS SOCIETY. DRED SOMEDAY THE SANFORD’S WILL PAY DEARLY FOR WHAT THEY’VE DONE TO OUR FAMILY. I’M ALMOST READY TO USE THE UNDERGROUND RAILROAD AND GET AT LEAST TO ALTON. FROM THERE, WHO KNOWS?! I’M LIKE YOU HARRIET: DON’T TRUST THE COURTS AT ALL. AT LEAST THE BLOWS HELPED LEGALLY AND FINANCIALLY WITH OUR FREEDOM CAUSE. HARRIET AND WE DON’T HAVE CHOLERA-IN FACT 10% OF ST. LOUIS IS DYING FROM CHOLERA. IT MUST GO AFTER THE WEAK AND WE ARE THE STRONG.

political drawing showing lincoln freeing the slaves

DRED BUT WE WILL GET A NEW TRIAL DATE ACCORDING TO THE JUDGE TO PROVIDE FURTHER PROOF THAT WE ARE SLAVES. THIS IS STUPID SINCE IF WE WEREN’T SLAVES WE WOULDN’T BE HERE ANYWAY. EVERYONE IN THE COURTROOM KNOWS THIS. HARRIET I’M FED UP, BUT IF IT’S WHAT WE MUST DO FOR THE CHILDREN SO BE IT. IT WOULD BE NICE IF THEY COULD GROW UP AS SISTERS. DRED YES, IT WOULD BE NICE IF ALL OF US COULD STAY TOGETHER.

anti-abolitionist handbill

HARRIET WELL, I’M HEARING AT THE GERMAN MANSION ON BREMEN AVENUE THAT SOME OF THE ABOLITIONISTS MAY SUPPORT OUR CAUSE WITH LEGAL AND FINANCIAL HELP. DRED THERE IS A GOD! WHO WOULD WANT TO HELP OUT TWO STRUGGLING SLAVES WHO LIVE IN A LEAN-TO IN DOWNTOWN ST. LOUIS? NOT MANY.

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HARRIET THERE ARE GOOD PEOPLE ALL OVER THIS EARTH. YOU JUST HAVE TO FIND THEM-THAT’S ALL. THEY’RE OUT THERE. I’M CONVINCED OF THAT. HECK, ELIZA IS LEARNING TO READ AND WRITE TO SOME DEGREE. SHE IS IN CLASSES WITH OTHER WHITE KIDS AND WELL ACCEPTED. IT WILL JUST TAKE TIME DRED-MAYBE NOT IN OUR LIFETIME-BUT IT LOOKS LIKE NEGROES WILL BE ASSIMILATED INTO SOCIETY WITH OTHERS IN THE NEXT GENERATION. THERE WILL BE HEALING!

Battle of Lookout Mountain

DRED I’LL BELIEVE THAT WHEN I SEE IT WITH MY OWN EYES. HECK! THEY SAY WE MAY GO THROUGH A WAR BETWEEN THE NORTH AND SOUTH BEFORE ALL THIS IS RESOLVED. NO ONE WANTS TO ROCK THE BOAT WITH SLAVERY NOR THE CONSTITUTION, WHICH IS SUPPOSED TO BE THE GREATEST DOCUMENT OF ALL TIME. HARRIET AT LEAST WE COUNT FOR 3/5 A PERSON IN A COMPROMISE FOR THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES IN CONGRESS. EVERY SLAVE KNOWS THIS FACT WELL, BUT WE STILL ARE NOT CONSIDERED CITIZENS. AND EVEN FREE BLACKS ARE NOT UNITED STATES CITIZENS OR CITIZENS OF THEIR OWN STATES. IN MOST STATES YOU CANNOT VOTE IF YOU ARE OF AFRICAN DESCENT! DRED THE UNITED STATES CONSTITUTION DID NOTHING FOR SLAVES-ZERO! WE SHOULD HAVE BEEN GRANTED RIGHTS IN THE DOCUMENT-THAT SIMPLE. EVERYONE KNOWS IT. HOW WOULD THE ELITE FRAMERS LIKE NEVER BEING A CITIZEN, NEVER HAVING MONEY, A PLACE TO LIVE, CLOTHES, DOCTORS, SCHOOLS, FOOD, OR ANYTHING! THE LAWMAKERS WOULD NEVER PUT UP WITH WHAT WE HAVE TO PUT UP WITH, HARRIET.

interior of eugene field house

HARRIET IN TIME THIS WILL ALL BE OVER WITH. IRENE WILL BE A BEAST OF THE PAST. SHE WILL NEVER AGAIN RULE OUR LIVES. WE ARE SUING FOR OUR GOD GIVEN RIGHT OF FREEDOM. I’M TIRED AND GOING TO BED. GOOD NIGHT AND LOVE. LOVE.

DRED End of Chapter 5, Beloved Harriet.

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BH-Chapter5  

st louis courtHouse toDay Battle of malvern Hill, virginia HARRIET well, you dIdn’t see mrs. russell or Irene jump out and admIt who owned u...

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