Two Men before the Storm: Arba Crane's Recollection of Dred Scott and the Supreme Court Case That Started the Civil War

Two Men before the Storm: Arba Crane's Recollection of Dred Scott and the Supreme Court Case That Started the Civil War

by Gregory J. Wallance
     
 
In the early 1850s, Arba Crane, a young Harvard Law School graduate from Vermont, arrived in St Louis to begin his law career. Working alone late in the evenings, Crane forms a friendship with the office janitor, a slave named Dred Scott. As Scott recounts his life as a slave, Crane realizes that Scott has a legal claim to freedom and persuades him to file a lawsuit.

Overview

In the early 1850s, Arba Crane, a young Harvard Law School graduate from Vermont, arrived in St Louis to begin his law career. Working alone late in the evenings, Crane forms a friendship with the office janitor, a slave named Dred Scott. As Scott recounts his life as a slave, Crane realizes that Scott has a legal claim to freedom and persuades him to file a lawsuit. Thus begins a chain of events that ignites a political and legal firestorm across the nation.

Crane fights for Scott's rights for years. The case reaches the US Supreme Court before a spellbound country. But the Court's catastrophic decision in Scott v. Sandford holds that slaves are property without rights and that Congress has no power to halt the spread of slavery. While the decision marks the beginning of the path to civil war, it is not the end of Dred Scott's quest for freedom.

Two Men Before the Storm is based on historical events: the profound friendship between a young lawyer and a slave and a fight for justice that fundamentally changed our nation. A work of historical fiction (with detailed historical endnotes), it is especially timely as we approach a new political battle over nominees to the Supreme Court.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781929774364
Publisher:
Greenleaf Book Group Press
Publication date:
09/28/2005
Pages:
341
Product dimensions:
5.90(w) x 8.90(h) x 1.00(d)

Meet the Author

Gregory Wallance is a prominent lawyer in New York City. He is the author of the acclaimed Papa's Game, a finalist for the Edgar Allen Poe award.

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