Old Courthouse Exhibits & Video
While visiting the Old Courthouse, be sure to view the unique dioramas, which depict significant events in westward expansion and as examples of early National Park Service exhibit craftsmanship.
In 1846, a slave named Dred Scott sued for his freedom at the St. Louis Courthouse. His case went to the Supreme Court, where the verdict set the stage for the Civil War. Today the Old Courthouse is part of the Jefferson National Expansion Memorial. Legacy of Courage interprets the struggles for freedom that Dred Scott and his family experienced. The exhibit starts in the west hall and continues into the south Special Exhibit Gallery.
"Slavery on Trial" is a 17-minute film detailing the struggle for freedom of St. Louis slaves Dred and Harriet Scott, and the infamous Supreme Court decision of 1857 that declared that African Americans had "no rights a white man was bound to respect."
Free showings throughout the day.
Did You Know?
Land for the Historic Old Courthouse was donated in 1816 by Judge John Baptisite Charles Lucas and St. Louis founder Rene Auguste Chouteau. More...