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Education Resources & History Questions for Students

Opportunities abound for students, tourists and other visitors to the state Capitol to learn about Arkansas history, the importance of voting and how elections are conducted.

The Secretary of State’s office maintains the building and grounds, and its staff organize a Young Voters Workshop, teacher workshops and classroom presentations catered to students of all levels. The Education department staff travel to most locations in Arkansas.

Here are links to some of the programs offered by the Arkansas Secretary of State:

Q & A for Students

The Arkansas Senate has 35 senators.  Each senator represents about 88,000 people.

Link to Arkansas Senators

 

The Arkansas constitution states you have to be at least 25 years old to serve in the Arkansas Senate.

Arkansas Constitution Article 5, § 4

 

A senator must be a resident of his/her district for at least one (1) year and be a resident of the State of Arkansas for at least two (2) years and a citizen of the United States.

 

Arkansas Constitution Article 5, § 4

The Lieutenant Governor serves as the President of the Senate.  He/she is the presiding officer in the Senate chamber.  The President of the Senate only votes to break a tie (Arkansas Constitution, Amend. 6 § 5.) 

Five senators have served two or more consecutive terms as President Pro Tempore of the Arkansas Senate.

Senator Mark W. Izard -  2nd and 3rd General Assemblies (1838-1841)

Senator Thomas Fletcher - 12th, 13th, and 14th General Assemblies (1858-1863) 

Senator J.M. Johnson - 17th and 18th General Assemblies (1868-1872)

Senator William Norrell - 49th and 50th General Assemblies (1933-1936)

Senator Jonathan Dismang - 90th and the 91st General Assemblies (2015-2018)

 

Click for more information on past Arkansas Senate Pro Tempores 

 

A total of twenty-one women have served in the Arkansas Senate.

Currently, seven women are serving in the Senate and there have been fourteen women that have served in the past in the Arkansas Senate.

 

Click here for more information on Women in the Senate

Senator James W. Mason was elected to the Arkansas Senate in 1869 and served until 1872.  A total of nineteen senators have been African-American.  Eight senators were elected from 1869 to 1894.  It then took another 80 years before the next African-American senator was elected to the Arkansas Senate.

Senator Linda Chesterfield, Senator Joyce Elliott and Senator Stephanie Flowers are current senators in the Arkansas Senate.

 

Click here for more information on Minorities in the Senate

Seating is determined by seniority. The senator who is first in seniority chooses first and then the second in seniority continues until all seats are filled.  Seating along with office spaces and parking are also determined at an organizational meeting held before each regular session.

 

When the senate first met in the new Senate Chamber in 1911 the dome had crystal glass on it.  In 1914 stained glass was added to the dome to cut down the glare from the crystal glass.  The same stained glass is still in place today in the Senate Chamber dome.  The stained glass was made by the Mitchell-Vance Company of New York.

More information on the Senate Chamber and the Senate Chamber Dome

 

Arkansas Senate Chamber Dome

The chandelier weighs about 1,200 pounds, and is made of brass, copper, zinc, iron and glass. The company that made the chandelier is Mitchell-Vance.  It is one of three chandeliers the Mitchell-Vance Company made for Arkansas Capitol.  The others are in the Rotunda and in the chamber of the House of Representatives.  The chandelier in the Senate chamber is the smallest of the three.

 

More information on the Senate Chamber and the Senate Chamber Dome

 

Arkansas Senate Chandelier