Arkansas Act 590 (1981)

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Arkansas Act 590 (1981) was passed by the Arkansas General Assembly and signed into law by then-governor Frank White. The act stipulates that evolution science and creation science be given "balanced treatment" in the classroom. The act was based on language drafted by Wendell Bird for the Institute of Creation Research (ICR). The ICR's Paul Ellwanger took the draft and turned it into a resolution that could be used as a text for making laws at the state level.

Ellwanger gave the resolution to pastor A. A. Blount, who passed it along to state legislator James L. Holsted who introducted it in the Arkansas Senate. It passed quickly through the House a week later. Arkansas was the only state to pass a law based on Ellwanger's text.


Langdon Gilkey, Creationism on Trial: Evolution and God at Little Rock (University Press of Virginia, 1985).

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