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Old Courthouse, Saint Louis

#2 of 25 in Historic Sites in Saint Louis
Government Building · Historic Site
Visit one of the city's most famous landmarks at Old Courthouse, the site of the beginnings of the famous Dred Scott court case. Completed in 1864, the 59 m (192 ft) tall building has long been an integral part of the local skyline. Join a guided tour of the domed building to learn more about its historical significance, including the 1846 case in which the escaped slave Dred Scott sued for his freedom, a pivotal moment in the lead-up to the Civil War. View the impressive interior of the courthouse, including the dome's decorative ceiling and several restored courtrooms dating to the early 20th century. Keep in mind that you must organize tours in advance by phone with the park rangers. To visit Old Courthouse and get the most from your holiday in Saint Louis, create itinerary details personal to you using our Saint Louis online trip itinerary maker.
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TripAdvisor traveler rating 4.5
1,047 reviews
  • Very interesting and educational. The cases that were on this docket changed the course of history and to see it up close was amazing.  more »
  • You should stop here on your visit to st louis. Unfortunately you can't go inside right now. There is some really neat history inside. Also it is a good pic to get the courthouse inside the arch.  more »
  • Historic and beautiful structure. We did a walk through but there were NP staffers there to answer questions or point out details as well. Many interesting and dramatic architectural details...the beautiful staircase, the wood accents, the dome, and of course the events that occurred in the building. You can view two courtrooms of different time periods, that are used for tours, also field trips for school children who reenact a pretend case, mock trials such as "the stolen bubble gum" or similar... a big hit!
  • Beautiful scenery. Such cleanliness. The electric scooters automatically slow down in the area to prevent accidents. Beautiful spot for sight seeing and enjoying the view!

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