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Ohio’s population


Ohio landscape
Ohio landscape

For most of its history, Ohio has maintained a fairly steady growth in population, except during the Great Depression of the 1930s and the period of industrial stagnation in the 1970s and 1980s. The early 1990s saw moderate growth, reflecting improved economic conditions. Like much of the rest of America, Ohio became more racially and ethnically diverse in the late 20th century. Before World War II, less than 5 percent of the state’s population was black. Responding to the need for workers in war-related industries, thousands of Southern blacks as well as whites migrated to Ohio’s urban communities in the 1940s. In the postwar years, additional thousands of Hispanics migrated to Ohio, many seeking seasonal agriculture work or manufacturing or service jobs. Beginning in the 1970s numbers of Asians, largely from Vietnam, Korea, and India, began to migrate to Ohio’s urban centers, many seeking professional and business positions.

As Ohio’s population became more diverse, gaps among races and economic groups widened during the turbulent 1960s. Riots occurred in the impoverished black neighborhoods of a number of cities, with the most devastating taking place in the Hough area of Cleveland in July 1966. A decision by the Supreme Court of the United States in 1964 ordered the reapportionment of the lower house of the Ohio legislature to give equal representation to the cities, based on a system of one person, one vote. As a result, the General Assembly in 1966 had 12 black members, or 9 percent of the membership of each house. In 1967 Carl Stokes was elected mayor of Cleveland, the first black mayor of a major American city. Student protests against the Vietnam War (1959-1975), which swept many American campuses during the 1960s, turned deadly at Ohio’s Kent State University. During demonstrations against the U.S. bombing and invasion of Cambodia, National Guardsmen fired into a crowd of students, killing four people and injuring nine on May 4, 1970. "Ohio" © Emmanuel BUCHOT, Encarta, Wikipedia

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