After thirty years, the construction of the courthouse ended in 1862. It served as the City's courthouse until the 1930s and became a part of the Jefferson National Expansion Memorial. With a magnificent Italian-Renaissance style iron dome, Greek Revival columns, balconies, and murals telling the history of St. Louis – it is an imposing building.
On the first floor, there is also an exhibition and a movie on Dred's case – A slave who tried to release his family. The case eventually reached the Supreme Court – which decided that Dred Scott has no right to appeal to the court because being a slave means he got no civil rights. This decision, from 1857, drew the carpet below those opposed to slavery. It says that the states have no authority to prevent slavery - and it was the flame that led to the Civil War and the final abolishment of slavery in the USA.
The entrance is free.