Roger B. Taney

Most Influential Person Across History

Chief justice of the United States from 1836 to 1864

Why Is Roger B. Taney Influential?

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According to Wikipedia, Roger Brooke Taney was the fifth chief justice of the United States, holding that office from 1836 until his death in 1864. Taney infamously delivered the majority opinion in Dred Scott v. Sandford , ruling that African Americans could not be considered U.S. citizens and that Congress could not prohibit slavery in the U.S. territories. Prior to joining the U.S. Supreme Court, Taney served as the U.S. attorney general and U.S. secretary of the treasury under President Andrew Jackson. He was the first Catholic to serve on the Supreme Court.

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