Statue of Roger Taney, author of Dred Scott decision, removed

The statue of former Supreme Court Chief Justice Roger B. Taney, who wrote the majority opinion in the infamous Dred Scott case, was removed from the grounds of the Maryland state capitol, the Baltimore Sun reported.

Work crews removed the statue, which has sat on the grounds of the state house for 145 years, at 2 a.m., the Sun reported.

Taney, a Maryland native, wrote the majority opinion in the 1857 case, Scott v. Sanford, which upheld slavery and found that “a free negro of the African race, whose ancestors were brought to this country and sold as slaves, is not a ‘citizen’ within the meaning of the Constitution of the United States.”

Taney was the fifth chief justice of the Supreme Court, serving from 1836 until his death in 1864.

The statue will be moved to a secure Maryland State Archives storage facility, according to an email outlining the operation obtained by The Baltimore Sun.

The move comes after Gov. Larry Hogan announced his support for removing the statue.

“While we cannot hide from our history — nor should we — the time has come to make clear the difference between properly acknowledging our past and glorifying the darkest chapters of our history,” Hogan said Tuesday in a statement.

The statue, dedicated in 1872, is the latest monument linked to the Confederate era to be removed.

Baltimore Mayor Catherine Pugh ordered middle-of-the-night removals of four monuments this week: one of Taney, another of Confederate Gens. Robert E. Lee and Stonewall Jackson, a Confederate Soldiers and Sailors monument and a Confederate Women’s monument.

The removals were spurred by last weekend’s deadly rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, the Sun reported.