The Press Newspaper
Rutherford B. Hayes is the only one of Ohio’s eight presidents who was born and died in here in the Buckeye State.
Hayes was proud of his Ohio roots and often referred to himself as a “Buckeye.” That term took on added significance when, as governor of Ohio, he played a lead role in creation of the Ohio Agricultural and Mechanical College – today known as The Ohio State University.
The Hayes Presidential Center highlights Hayes’ intense pride in being an Ohioan and his strong links to OSU with its newest exhibit, “Rutherford B. Hayes: Buckeye President,” which opened Oct. 17 and continues through April 13, 2014. The exclusive exhibit is made possible through funding from Diversified Insurance and Auto-Owners Insurance.
Hayes was raised in Ohio, received most of his education in the state, married a fellow Buckeye, and reared his family here. His varied careers also were entrenched in Ohio. Hayes was a city solicitor in Cincinnati, served in and commanded the 23rd Ohio Volunteer Infantry, was elected to one of Ohio’s U.S. Congressional seats, and was a three-term Ohio governor.
Along with his devotion to Ohio, Hayes spent much of his life promoting education for all. He believed the foundation of a strong nation was an educated populace. It was in his first term as Ohio governor, that Hayes used his political influence to convince the Ohio Senate and House to pass legislation needed to establish a land-grant college. That institution was re-named The Ohio State University in 1878.
In 1892, Hayes was selected President of The Ohio State Board of Trustees. The University’s “manual training” building Hayes Hall (opened in 1893) is named in his honor. Today, Hayes Hall is the oldest building on the OSU campus.
Hayes also was a champion of Hampton University (established to educate freed slaves), the Carlisle Indian Industrial School, and the Ohio Soldiers and Sailors Home (a residential/educational facility for the children of Civil War soldiers). Until the time of his death, he was a key participant in the Lake Mohonk Conferences, which influenced governmental policies on education and shaped attitudes toward Native Americans and African Americans.
Exhibit hours are 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Tuesday-Saturday and noon-5 p.m. Sunday (closed Mondays, Thanksgiving Day, Christmas, and New Year’s Day). Admission is $7.50 for adults; $6.50 for seniors age 60 and older and $3 for children 6-12. Children 5 and younger get in free.
The Rutherford B. Hayes Presidential Center is located at the corner of Hayes and Buckland avenues, Fremont, Ohio. Visit www.rbhayes.org for a complete list of year-round special events.
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