: This photograph shows Benjamin W. Arnett (1836-1906), a member of the Ohio House of Representatives during its 67th session (1886-1887).
Arnett was born in Brownsville, Pennsylvania. A teacher and bishop in the African Methodist Episcopal Church, he moved to Ohio in 1867, and served as pastor and teacher at churches in Cincinnati, Toledo, Urbana, and Columbus. In 1886, as a Republican representative from Greene County in the Ohio General Assembly, Arnett introduced legislation to repeal the state's "Black Laws." First enacted in 1803, these laws limited the freedom and rights of the state's African American residents. Arnett was particularly concerned that state law did not ensure that black children had the same educational opportunities as white children. In 1887, statutes regarding education were changed; the state was thereafter required to provide equal opportunities to all children regardless of race. View on Ohio Memory.
: Om871_806473_004 Subjects
: African American Ohioans; Ohio Government; Education; Civil Liberties; Religion in Ohio; Ohio House of Representatives; Segregation--Laws and legislation; Places
: Wilberforce (Ohio); Greene County (Ohio)