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Samuel R. Lowery became the first black lawyer to actually argue a case before the Supreme Court on Febuary 2, 1866.

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In 1848, Samuel became a Christian Church minister. Later, in December of 1856. his life and the lives of local free blacks were drastically changed, because the debate over slavery during the 1856 presidential campaign caused a local race riot in which immigrants and poor whites vented their latent resentment of wealthy free blacks by attacking them and their businesses. The free blacks’ school, which had been operating since 1839, was ordered closed for good by the city and white vigilantes. Two dozen blacks were jailed but later released. Fearing for their safety, several free black families, the Lowerys among them, went to the North. In 1857, Samuel became the pastor of the Harrison Street Christian Church in Cincinnati, Ohio. By 1859, Samuel was organizing Christian Churches in Canada.

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