Slaves and the Courts, 1740 to 1860 (Library of Congress)
This collection consists of 105 library books and manuscripts, totalling approximately 8,700 pages drawn principally from the Law Library and the Rare Book and Special Collections Division of the Library of Congress, with a few from the General Collections. The documents comprise an assortment of trials and cases, reports, arguments, accounts, examinations of cases and decisions, proceedings, journals, a letter, and other works of historical importance. Most of the items date from the nineteenth century and include materials associated with the Dred Scott case and the abolitionist activities of John Brown, John Quincy Adams, and William Lloyd Garrison. Eighteenth-century cases include Somerset v. Stewart, decided in England a few years before the signing of the Declaration of Independence, which "underscored the great tension created by slavery in Anglo-American law."