Downtown in St. Louis, Missouri — The American Midwest (Upper Plains)
Action and Reaction
Jefferson National Expansion Memorial
— National Park Service, U.S. Department of the Interior —
I am threatened with violence and death because I dare to advocate, in any way, the cause of the oppressed...And I am prepared to abide the consequences. Elijah P. Lovejoy, 1835
Elijah Lovejoy printed his antislavery newspaper, the St. Louis Observer, in his stop that once stood here. In 1835, decades before the Civil War, Lovejoy wrote a scathing editorial about a St. Louis lynching. The city's reaction brought violence to his newspaper and his family. He continued to exercise his right to free speech, promoting an end to slavery. One year later Lovejoy died for his beliefs in Alton, Illinois. He is remembered as a martyr for freedom.
Lovejoy's editorial described the brutal mob violence, rebuking the "vengeance of a mob" at the cost of "justice...administered."
The death of Lovejoy was the most atrocious case of rioting which ever disgraced this country.
John Quincy Adams, November 1837
Lovejoy's pursuit of justice ultimately resulted in his death by a mob in nearby Alton, Illinois.
Erected by National Park Service, U.S. Department of the Interior.
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Abolition & Underground RR • Communications. In addition, it is included in the Former U.S. Presidents: #06 John Quincy Adams series list.
Location. 38° 37.664′ N, 90° 11.039′ W. Marker is in Downtown in St. Louis, Missouri. Marker is on Gateway Arch Trail, on the right when traveling south. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Saint Louis MO 63102, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Gateway to the West (within shouting distance of this marker); Speedy Delivery (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); Curves Ahead (about 300 feet away); The Captains' Return (about 500 feet away); The James B. Eads Bridge (about 700 feet away); Miles of Steamboats (about 800 feet away); Rue Royale (approx. 0.2 miles away); Pierre Laclede (approx. 0.2 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Downtown.
Credits. This page was last revised on April 17, 2020. It was originally submitted on September 17, 2019, by Devry Becker Jones of Washington, District of Columbia. This page has been viewed 126 times since then and 47 times this year. Photos: 1, 2. submitted on September 17, 2019, by Devry Becker Jones of Washington, District of Columbia.