Image: Dred Scott Plaque
Rob Carr  /  AP
Maryland Court of Appeals Chief Judge Robert Bell, center, unveils a plaque honoring Dred and Harriet Scott during a ceremony Tuesday in Frederick, Md.
updated 11/17/2009 4:35:07 PM ET 2009-11-17T21:35:07

More than 150 years after the U.S. Supreme Court issued the notorious Dred Scott decision affirming slavery, a Maryland city has erected a plaque to educate visitors about the decision and the local man who wrote it.

The bronze marker was dedicated Tuesday at Frederick city hall on a granite pedestal about eight feet from a bronze bust of Chief Justice Roger Brooke Taney. The one-time Frederick resident wrote the 1857 decision, which also held that freed slaves and their descendants could never be U.S. citizens. The case became a catalyst for the Civil War.

The plaque is a compromise between residents who wanted the Taney statue removed and those who believe it deserves the place of honor it has occupied for 77 years.

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