I met Lynne Jackson briefly at Jana Elementary School Thursday morning. She was about to thank kids from Jana and five other schools in the Hazelwood School District for raising money to help create a life-sized bronze statue of Dred and Harriet Scott.
The plan (which got underway last October) is to erect the statue outside the Old Courthouse in Downtown St. Louis.
Jackson says she's proud of the kids and appreciates their efforts to raise money but what means more to her is the fact they're learning about the struggle more than 160 years ago by her great-great grandparents to win freedom for slaves. It didn't work out right away.
With the Dred Scott story explained in detail inside the Old Courthouse and the street outside it named for him, I asked Jackson why she's working so hard to get a bronze statue there.
"There is no statue of Dred and Harriet anywhere in the world," Jackson said. "For them to make such sacrifices and playing such a pivotal role in unfortunately getting off to a bad start with the Civil War but to a good end with the 13th, 14th adn 15th ammendments. We believe strongly were it not for their courageous stand to continue the case for 11 years to the Supreme Court we could have still been a slave nation who knows how long."
Here's a link with a picture of a two-foot statue of what the life-sized one would look like. It's also got details on the project and how you can contribute to it if you're interested.
Mark Schnyder is a reporter at KMOV-TV. He can be reached at MSchnyder@kmov.com.