Evolution of the national citizenry

  • Dred Scott v. Sandford

    The court ruled that Dred Scott was not a citizen of the United States because citizenship was limited on grounds of race within the Constitution.
  • Election of Abraham Lincoln

    Abraham Lincoln was elected in 1860, leading to Republican control of the White House. Lincoln's Administration considered black people to be citizens.
  • Civil Rights Act of 1866

    Congress passed the Civil Rights Act of 1866, which stated that all persons born in the United States were citizens of the country and of the state they were born in. This established a rule of citizenship that didn't depend on race. The only exceptions were for Native tribes that were untaxed, and for anyone considered to be subject to foreign powers (diplomats and foreign officials).
  • Ratification of the 14th Amendment

    The 14th Amendment was ratified on July 9th, 1868, and granted citizenship to all persons "born or naturalized in the United States".