Sunday, September 25, 2011

After Bouchercon: St. Louis, where America began

(The Old Courthouse in St. Louis, where Dred Scott and
his  wife  sued to gain their freedom from slavery in 1846.)

With the last Bouchercon 2011 attendee safely out of town, and even the Jordans and Judy Bobalik on their way home, I set out for the Museum of Westward Expansion under the Gateway Arch  in St. Louis, figuring I'd discover America there.

I found more than I expected; I'd had no idea that Dred Scott began his legal fight for freedom from slavery just a few hundred yards away.

(A meeting with the Shoshone from
The Journals of Lewis and Clark)
(The Gateway
Think of it: Barely forty years after Lewis and Clark left St. Louis on the expedition that opened North America to westward expansion, the same city saw the beginning of a legal fight that hardened the lines between North and South, and led to the rise of the Republican Party, the election of Abraham Lincoln, and the Civil War.

Sure, the pilgrims landed in Massachusetts and the nation's founding documents were written in Philadelphia, but Missouri is where modern America started.

© Peter Rozovsky 2011

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Anonymous Liz V. said...

A picture we otherwise might not have seen?

September 26, 2011  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

Thanks, and here’s that link in handy, clickable form. I can assure you that I never tasted the stuff.

September 26, 2011  
Anonymous Linkmeister said...

St. Josephs and Independence were two big jumping-off spots for expansion Westward. The museum in St. Louis hadn't been built when I visited the arch in 1968, unfortunately.

One of these days.

September 27, 2011  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

It's a neat little museum, full of quotations from great men of the time. Daniel Webster's dismissive statements about westward expansion were somehow reassuring. Even great men can behind by history.

September 27, 2011  

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