Entries - Starting with G

Gaines’ Landing, Skirmish at (July 20, 1862)

This Civil War skirmish occurred in relation to strategic considerations of Major General Samuel R. Curtis after he occupied Helena (Phillips County) and established operational headquarters there in the summer of 1862. The location of Gaines’ (or Gaines) Landing in Chicot County—situated between Curtis’s base at Helena and the stronghold of Vicksburg, Mississippi—made it a useful base for Confederates to transport munitions and other supplies into Arkansas by flatboat and steamboat. In addition to his concern for the general strategic security of the Mississippi River, Curtis also worried that such activities could impinge upon possible operations against Little Rock (Pulaski County) and the area between Memphis, Tennessee, and the mouth of the Arkansas River. To address these concerns, Curtis led …

Gaines’ Landing, Skirmish at (June 28, 1863)

Located on the western bank of the Mississippi River in Chicot County, Gaines’ (or Gaines) Landing was a busy shipping point between Helena (Phillips County) and Vicksburg, Mississippi. A road heading west from Gaines’ Landing through Drew County was one of few in the area leading inland away from the river, making it very important to settlers, immigrants, and merchants. During the American Civil War, Gaines’ Landing was one of many points along the river used by Confederate troops to harass Federal steamboats. Long bends of the river were ideal for the Confederates’ hit-and-run tactics: they could attack a boat as it entered the bend and then race across the narrow neck of land to attack it again as it …

Gainsboro (Independence County)

Gainsboro is located between Pfeiffer (Independence County) and Moorefield (Independence County), about seven miles east-northeast of Batesville, the county seat. The community, which never had a post office, grew out of Sharp’s Cross Roads, located about one and a half miles north-northwest of Gainsboro; Sharp’s Cross Roads was earlier called Rust’s. The historic community of Gainsboro is located on Watson Road just south of its junction with Highway 25 (White Drive). Gainsboro likely received its name from the Gaines family, which was farming in the area before the Civil War. A short-lived post office was at Rust’s (1856–1859), with John David McKinney postmaster, but it was replaced by the Sharp’s Cross Roads post office established in 1859, with Samuel Y. …

Galley Rock

aka: Galla Rock (Pope County)
Galley Rock in Pope County is a two-mile shale bluff that rises almost forty feet high on the north bank of the Arkansas River, just northwest of Petit Jean Mountain. It was a natural landmark for early explorers and settlers. The area was a site for Cherokee settlers of the early 1800s and became a thriving river town in the 1830s. However, by the 1870s, the town experienced a decline, and all that remains today is the town cemetery. During the late 1700s, river travel was the safest and most reliable mode of transportation. French explorers and trappers navigated the Arkansas River with only striking, geologic features marking the locations of their trading posts and hunting camps. Galley (or Galla) …

Galloway (Independence County)

Galloway is a historic community shown on an 1860 map of Independence County. It was located southeast of Sulphur Rock (Independence County) in the alluvial bottoms of the Black and White rivers and north of historic Akron (Independence County) near the Magness Ferry, lying between Newark (Independence County) and Cord (Independence County) on what is today Galloway Road. The road crosses Dota Creek. The community received its name from Robert M. (Bob) Galloway, who was appointed its postmaster on November 9, 1858. Robert Galloway married Harriet Robbins in Shelby County, Tennessee, in 1843 and moved the family to the Big Bottom region in the 1850s shortly after his father’s death. The 1860 census shows Galloway to be a slave owner …

Galloway Women’s College

aka: Galloway Female College
Galloway Women’s College in Searcy (White County) was one of the longest survivors from among the schools established in the 1800s by the Methodist Episcopal Church, South, in Arkansas. Dedicated in honor of Bishop Charles Betts Galloway on April 18, 1889, the school endured until its final merger with Hendrix College in Conway (Faulkner County) in 1933. Methodist Church leaders realized by the latter part of the nineteenth century that their resources could not support the numerous small schools they had established around the state and decided to concentrate efforts on fewer institutions to provide better facilities and sounder education. Under the leadership of Bishop Galloway, leaders decided to focus on one institution primarily for men and Galloway Female College, …

Galloway’s Farm, Affair at

aka: Shelling of Jacksonport
  Following the March 1862 Battle of Pea Ridge in northwestern Arkansas, Major General Samuel Curtis led his Army of the Southwest on an ambitious attempt to capture Little Rock (Pulaski County). Supplying the army during the campaign was a difficult task, with rivers being vital to his success. River port towns such as Jacksonport (Jackson County), situated along the White River, became important supply centers, attracting attention from both Confederate and Union forces. The occupation of the town by Brigadier General Frederick Steele’s forces on May 4 brought renewed interest from Confederate forces. After receiving orders to occupy Jacksonport in the spring of 1862, Gen. Steele’s forces departed northeastern Arkansas on April 22. Delayed by heavy rain, they did not …

Gangster Museum of America

The history of Hot Springs (Garland County) and its role in Arkansas and American history has, since 2008, been brought to life in the award-winning Gangster Museum of America, located at 510 Central Avenue in downtown Hot Springs. The museum was founded by Robert Raines, under the umbrella of Historical Attractions, Inc. (a for-profit corporation), and was the recipient of the 2009 Tourism of the Year Award in Garland County. It was also a 2011 Henry Award finalist in the Arkansas Heritage category. Although there are many artifacts and hundreds of photo exhibits, the museum experience is driven by a tour guide who navigates a series of eyewitness accounts on high-definition video presentations of those who lived through the “glory days” …

Gann House

The Gann House is among the oldest buildings still standing in Saline County. The Gann House also reportedly had the first indoor bathrooms in the city of Benton (Saline County). It was built in 1895 in the Queen Anne style as the private residence of prominent doctor and freemason Dr. Dewell Gann Sr. and his family. Gann was born on March 31, 1863, in Atlanta, Georgia. In Arkansas, his family became well known for its contributions to history and to the field of medical science. The house was added to the National Register of Historic Places on January 2, 1976, a few months after what is now the Gann Museum, immediately neighboring it on South Market Street in Benton, was …

Gann Museum of Saline County

The Gann Museum of Saline County, established in 1980, is located in a historical structure at 218 Market Street in Benton (Saline County). Housed in the old medical offices of doctors Dewell Gann Sr. and Dewell Gann Jr., it contains an extensive collection of Arkansas artifacts: Quapaw and Caddo Indian artifacts, Niloak and other pottery made in Saline County, memorabilia depicting early county history up to the present, industrial and manufacturing items, photographs, and old newspapers. It is an incorporated, nonprofit institution, governed by a committee of thirteen county residents. The Gann building is an architectural landmark. Built in 1893 as the office of Dr. Dewell Gann Sr., it is the only known building in existence that is constructed out …

Gann Row Historic District

The Gann Row Historic District was located three blocks from downtown Benton (Saline County). It contained thirteen homes constructed between 1880 and 1924. The district was named for Dr. Dewell Gann Sr., who rented homes on the property to local workers and their families. The oldest homes in the district were in the Folk Victorian style, while the dominant style was Craftsman. The Gann Row Historic District was bordered on the north by West Maple, on the east by South Main, on the south by West Pine, and on the west by South Market. The Gann Row Historic District was added to the National Register of Historic Places on February 5, 1999. By 2017, all the houses but one, 418 …

Gant, Glenn Rowlett

Glenn Gant was an important figure in the art history of Eureka Springs (Carroll County). He is best remembered for his paintings and pen-and-ink drawings that captured the unique essence of the architecture and culture of Eureka Springs during the last half of the twentieth century. Glenn Rowlett Gant was born in Kansas City, Missouri, on September 25, 1911, the son of Joseph Rowlett Gant and Phillippa Gant. His parents divorced shortly after his birth. Phillippa, a musician, relocated alone to Chicago, Illinois, while Joseph, a bank president, remained in Kansas City and married Mildred Stites. They had two more children: Elizabeth Lee and John (Jack) E. Gant. After his father’s death in 1925, Glenn lived with his aunt, Emma …

Gantt, Edward W.

Edward W. Gantt became one of southwestern Arkansas’s leading politicians in the Civil War era. He pushed for secession in 1860, led Confederate troops in 1861–1862, and then abruptly supported the Union from 1863 to 1865. He promoted radical social, economic, and political change during Reconstruction as he led the Freedmen’s Bureau and Radical Republicans in Arkansas. Edward W. Gantt was born in 1829, the son of George Gantt, a teacher and Baptist preacher, and Mary Elizabeth Williams. He decided to become a lawyer and attended the 1850 Nashville Convention, which considered secession during the crisis over California statehood. Hoping to find opportunities in the booming Southwest, he moved to Washington (Hempstead County) in 1854. The Sixth Judicial District elected …

Garage Bands

With the arrival of the Beatles on American shores in 1964, the “British Invasion” became a national pop-culture phenomenon. Representing the second generation of rock and roll, wave after wave of English rock groups—such as the Rolling Stones, the Animals, and the Who—followed the Beatles during the next two years. Teenagers across the United States were inspired to form four- or five-member bands patterned after their British role models. Because they often practiced in garages, these amateur groups came to be known as “garage bands.” Like many mid-sized American cities, Little Rock (Pulaski County) witnessed a mid-1960s explosion in the number of neighborhood teenage groups, all competing for school, fraternity house, or country club engagements. Other cities and towns in …

Gardner, Virginia

Virginia Gardner was a journalist and left-wing activist. At one time a member of the Communist Party, she was also the author of a well-received biography of Louise Bryant, the wife of Russian Revolution chronicler John Reed. Although born in Oklahoma, Gardner spent most of her youth in Arkansas. Virginia Gardner was born on June 27, 1904, in Sallisaw, Indian Territory (now Oklahoma). She was the youngest of three daughters born to Gertrude Boltswood Gardner and John Gardner, who was a banker. The family moved to Fort Smith (Sebastian County) when she was two. That same year, her father contracted tuberculosis. He was taken to Colorado for treatment, and he sometimes returned there in the summers. Gardner’s mother died when …

Garfield (Benton County)

  Garfield is a town in Benton County, located just east of the Pea Ridge National Military Park. Named for James Garfield, the twentieth president of the United States, the community first rose to prominence as a railroad depot used for shipping water and fruit. After years of decline following the Depression, the town revitalized in the late twentieth century with the growing population of the county. The earliest settler at the location that would become Garfield was James Jackson, who arrived around 1839. Other families that settled in the area before the Civil War include those of Benjamin Mahurian, Joshua Brotcher, and Archibald Blansett. The Battle of Pea Ridge, fought March 7–8, 1862, near the present location of Garfield, was …

Garland (Miller County)

The city of Garland is on the Red River in eastern Miller County. U.S. Highway 82 crosses the river at Garland, as do the tracks of the old Cotton Belt Railroad. The city is often referred to as “Garland City.” The first and most famous resident of the area was William Wynn, who arrived at the banks of the Red River and established a farm around 1835. At that time, confusion about the border between Arkansas and Texas and uncertainty about the size of Miller County resulted in many records placing Wynn’s land in Lafayette County. Wynn bought many acres of land, on which he grew cotton and other crops. By 1850, according to census records, he owned ninety-six slaves. …

Garland County

Garland County, in the heart of the Ouachita Mountains, is home to the nation’s first federal reservation, which later became Hot Springs National Park. It has a diverse economy supported by strong tourism, forestry, manufacturing, and regional medical facilities. Pre-European Exploration Normal 0 false false false EN-US X-NONE X-NONE MicrosoftInternetExplorer4 /* Style Definitions */ table.MsoNormalTable {mso-style-name:”Table Normal”; mso-style-parent:””; font-size:11.0pt;”Calibri”,”sans-serif”; mso-fareast-“Times New Roman”; mso-bidi-“Times New Roman”;} The first inhabitants of the area to be called Garland County arrived about 12,000 BC, and this region was occupied by native people until about AD 1600. Although they had left the area before the first white American pioneers arrived, artifacts indicate that the native residents were related to historic Caddo Indians. Pioneer archaeologist Mark …

Garland County Courthouse

The Garland County Courthouse is located at Ouachita Avenue and Hawthorne Street in Hot Springs (Garland County). The four-story brick building is recognized by the Arkansas Historic Preservation Program to be both architecturally and historically significant, with one source calling it perhaps the finest example of Renaissance Revival–style architecture in the state. It was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1979. After the Civil War, Hot Springs grew into one of the nation’s leading health resorts. At that time, the county seat of Hot Spring County was in Rockport (Hot Spring County) near Malvern (Hot Spring County), a day-long trip for the citizens of Hot Springs. They urged the Arkansas General Assembly to create a new county, …

Garland County Historical Society

The Garland County Historical Society (GCHS) was organized on April 19, 1960, to preserve and encourage interest in the history of Garland County. The first officers were John Connelly, president; Mary D. Hudgins, vice president; Capitola Glazner, secretary; Dr. Francis J. Scully, treasurer; and Sam Sargo, Nathan Schoenfeld, and Katherine Creason, who formed the board of governors. The same year it was founded, the society published the first volume of its journal, The Record. Originally a quarterly, The Record is now a yearly publication that has won numerous awards from the Arkansas Historical Association. Inez Cline served as the editor of The Record from 1963 to 1986 and as associate editor from 1987 to 1988. The historical material she gathered …

Garland, Augustus Hill

Augustus Hill Garland was the eleventh governor of Arkansas, a member of the Confederate Congress, a U.S. senator, and attorney general of the United States. As governor of Arkansas, Garland worked to get the state out of a tremendous debt and improve the state’s image. As the subject of the U.S. Supreme Court case Ex parte Garland, Garland is also a part of legal history, and Garland County is named for him. Augustus Garland was born on June 11, 1832, in Covington, Tennessee, to Rufus Garland and Barbara Hill Garland. He had an older brother, Rufus, and an older sister, Elizabeth. Garland’s father moved the family to Lost Prairie (Miller County), where he owned a store. He died when Garland …

Garland, Mamie Odessa Hale

Mamie Odessa Hale Garland served as midwife consultant for the Arkansas Department of Health from 1945 to 1950 and is credited with training the state’s elderly and illiterate “granny midwives” to ensure that they knew the proper techniques to manage the medical aspects of pregnancy, labor, and delivery and could complete birth certificates. Her contributions led to Arkansas’s improved maternal/infant mortality rates and regulation of midwives. Mamie Odessa Hale was born November 19, 1910, in Keeny’s Creek, West Virginia. She was the third child born to Emanuel Hale and Minnie Maude Creasy Hale. In 1941, Hale attended the Tuskegee School of Nurse-Midwifery for Colored Nurses in Alabama, a program sponsored by the Children’s Bureau; a bachelor’s degree was required to …

Garner (White County)

Garner is a town in southern White County on Highway 367, not far from Highway 67. Though the area was first settled around 1850 and became a stop on the Cairo and Fulton Railroad in the nineteenth century, the town did not incorporate until 1971. William Brown Walker received legal title to land in White County in 1841, and by 1850, he had built a house and established a cotton farm on that land. His homestead, with several houses added over the years, was placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1992. Walker and his family owned slaves until the Civil War; after the war, some of the freed slaves remained on the land as tenant farmers. The …

Garner, Claud Wilton

Claud Wilton Garner was a man of many interests and talents. He began as a musician, became a merchant and an advocate for farmers, and, when he was fifty years old, began writing fiction. In addition to his interest in writing, he also composed a number of pieces of music. The sheet music for these compositions, along with the recordings, are located in the Southwest Arkansas Regional Archives in Washington (Hempstead County). Garner is remembered both as an Arkansas author and as a worker for farmers in Southwest Arkansas and in the Rio Grande Valley. Claud Garner was born in Hope (Hempstead County) on August 29, 1891, to Thomas Jefferson Garner and Ida Hope Haynes Garner. He had three sisters …

Garrott House

The Garrott House is the oldest surviving structure in Batesville (Independence County) and the first Batesville structure listed on the National Register of Historic Places (1971). The first house in Batesville’s School Addition, it was built in 1842 by Independence County pioneer George Case, who moved to Batesville from Ohio in 1837. A carpenter and cabinetmaker, Case built the house for his wife’s sister and her husband, Eliza (Ridgeway) and Robert Williams, who were also from Ohio. The house is of braced frame construction, its inner structure composed of squared logs mortised and pegged together at the base and top of each wall, each corner being “braced” by a diagonal log also mortised and pegged into the logs laid horizontally …

Gars

aka: Garfish
aka: Garpikes
Gars are a primitive group of euryhaline fishes dating back to the late Jurassic to early Cretaceous Period, about 150 million years ago. Gars are one of the most recognizable fishes because of their slender torpedo-shaped bodies, ganoid scales, and long snouts with numerous teeth. Dorsal and anal fins are set far back on the body, and the caudal fin is rounded, with a condition known as abbreviate-heterocercal. Gars are unusual among fishes in that their vascularized swim bladders can function as lungs; they must surface periodically to take a gulp of air. Arkansas hosts four gar species: the alligator gar (Atractosteus spatula), spotted gar (Lepisosteus oculatus), longnose gar (L. osseus), and shortnose gar (L. platostomous). Fossilized gar specimens have …

Garvan Woodland Gardens

Garvan Woodland Gardens in Hot Springs (Garland County) is a department of the School of Architecture at the University of Arkansas (UA) in Fayetteville (Washington County). It is a 210-acre botanical garden located on four and a half miles of Lake Hamilton shoreline and operates as a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. Its mission is to be a resource for people desiring to improve their aesthetic, cultural, and scientific knowledge of plants, gardening, architecture, and landscape architecture, within a woodland environment. Arthur Cook, a Malvern (Hot Spring County) businessman, purchased the acreage in the 1920s for the purpose of harvesting the timber to manufacture hardwood flooring at his mill, Wisconsin-Arkansas Lumber. Shortly after the acquisition, the land was transformed into a large …

Garvan, Verna Cook

Verna Mary Cook Garvan was one of the first women in Arkansas to own a construction/manufacturing business and was the benefactor of what is now Garvan Woodland Gardens in Hot Springs (Garland County). Verna Cook was born on January 22, 1911, in Groveton, Texas, to Arthur Bacillius Cook and Essie Louise Bordis Cook. Verna Cook and her sister, Dorothy, were raised to be “proper ladies,” but Verna often accompanied her father to work and absorbed his business acumen. In 1916, her father moved the family to Malvern (Hot Spring County) to manage the Wisconsin and Arkansas Lumber Company, an enterprise producing oak and pine flooring. Malvern Brick and Tile was also purchased by Verna’s father, who later served as a …

Garver, Neal Bryant

Neal Bryant Garver arrived in Little Rock (Pulaski County) in 1918 to help provide engineering services for the construction of a munitions plant during World War I. As the Arkansas State Highway Department’s first bridge engineer, Garver also led the design of more than 2,000 bridges from 1921 to 1950, helping to modernize the state’s roadways by adding river crossings. In 1919, Garver started what became the state’s largest engineering firm, which began by providing structural engineering services for Little Rock High School (later called Little Rock Central High), North Little Rock High School, the Pulaski County Jail, and many other structures. Neal Garver was born on February 17, 1877, in Lee County, Iowa, near the Mississippi River, to the …

Gary v. Stevenson

The Arkansas State Supreme Court adjudicated Gary v. Stevenson, a freedom suit and racial-identity trial, in 1858. It was one of an increasing number of racial-identity suits in the South during the last decade before the Civil War. In this case, Thomas Gary sued slaveholder Remson Stevenson in an attempt to win his freedom from slavery. Gary, aged about sixteen in 1858, whom witnesses described as having sandy-colored hair and blue eyes, appeared to be white. He contended that he was lawfully free because he was the white son of white parents. Stevenson, a slaveholder in Van Buren (Crawford County), countered that Gary was the child of an enslaved mother and therefore not white; this made him a slave for …

Gassville (Baxter County)

  Gassville (Baxter County) has a history of settlement beginning in the 1840s. Its level, fertile plain and proximity to the White River made it an ideal location for families to build their homes. It was near enough to the river to provide transportation for marketing crops and far enough from the water to have a healthful climate. The area was originally called “Turkey’s Neck” because of the shape of the bend of the White River. The Mount Pleasant Baptist Church (later the Gassville First Baptist Church) was organized in 1868, making it the second-oldest church in Baxter County. In 1869, twenty-one families arrived by wagon train from Cherokee County, Georgia, led by James Coffee. His father, Colonel James A. …

Gaston, James Albert (Jim)

Jim Gaston was a renowned Arkansas businessman, sportsman, and philanthropist whose legacy includes operating Gaston’s White River Resort, being an advocate for tourism and conservation in the state, and acting as a champion of education. His generosity contributed to significant growth at Arkansas State University–Mountain Home (ASUMH). James (Jim) Albert Gaston was born on December 18, 1941, to Albert (Al) Gaston and Iola Cosey Gaston in Herrin, Illinois. After moving to Arkansas, Al Gaston created Gaston’s White River Resort at Lakeview (Baxter County) in 1958. In 1961, at age twenty, Jim Gaston inherited the property, which at the time consisted of twenty acres, six small cottages, and six boats. Gaston expanded the operation significantly, until it covered 400 acres of land with …

Gate (Scott County)

The town of Gate is a historical community that was located in southern Scott County near the Polk County border. The community was originally established along a gated toll road (now Nella Road) and was subsequently named because of the actual “gate” that controlled the flow of traffic along the road. Gate was originally situated between the junction of Johnson Creek and Cedar Creek, which are tributaries of the Fourche La Fave River. Prior to European exploration, Gate was a wilderness lush with native vegetation and numerous species of wildlife, some of which no longer inhabit the area. Early inhabitants of the area were present during the Woodland, Archaic, and Mississippian periods. There are numerous archaeological sites located along Clear …

Gates, Noah Putnam

Noah Putnam Gates was an important educator in Arkansas in the last few decades of the nineteenth century. He played a particularly influential role in the development of what became the University of Arkansas (UA) in Fayetteville (Washington County). Noah Putnam Gates was born on November 18, 1932, near Princeton, Kentucky, the son of Nathan Gates and Carolina Davidson Gates. His early education took place in a wide range of schools (predominantly church affiliated) located in Kentucky and Missouri. He attended Chapel Hill College in Chapel Hill, Missouri, and Princeton College in Princeton, Kentucky, before studying at Illinois Normal University and the University of Michigan. He did not receive a degree from any of these schools, but the board of …

Gateway (Benton County)

Gateway is a town in northeastern Benton County. The town’s northern boundary is the state line with Missouri. Gateway is located on U.S. Highway 62, and its existence is largely a result of the highway. Although some claim that the name of the town reflects its relationship to people entering Arkansas from Missouri, the town actually was named for an arch over the highway that read, “Gateway to Eureka Springs.” Prior to the arrival of European explorers and American settlers, the Ozark Mountains were inhabited, but only sparsely. By the time of the Louisiana Purchase in 1803, the primary human residents were occasional visitors, especially the Osage of Missouri who came south into the Ozarks to hunt and fish. American …

Gatewood House

The Gatewood House, designed in the Shingle architectural style, is gambrel-roofed home located in Malvern (Hot Spring County). Constructed in 1905, it was added to the National Register of Historic Places on July 24, 1992. The house was constructed by Matthew and Hannah Duffie for their daughter, Annie Sinney Duffie Gatewood. Amie married Edwin Lee Gatewood in Dallas County in 1893, and the couple had three children between 1894 and 1902. Edwin died in Beebe (White County) on April 14, 1905, and Annie lived in the home with her children, Anita, Edwin, and Estell. She died on March 2, 1947, and is buried with her husband in Malvern. The home is located at 235 Pine Bluff Street and faces north. …

Gatewood, Willard Badgett, Jr.

Willard Badgett Gatewood Jr. was a nationally recognized scholar and longtime professor of history at the University of Arkansas (UA) in Fayetteville (Washington County). He also served briefly as chancellor of the university. Gatewood was the author of numerous books, most dealing with African-American and southern history. Willard B. Gatewood was born on February 23, 1931, on a farm on the Park Springs Road in Caswell County, North Carolina. His parents were Willard B. Gatewood, who was a tobacco farmer, and Bessie Pryor Gatewood; he had two brothers and four sisters. He received his BA, MA, and PhD in history at Duke University in Durham, North Carolina. He began his college teaching career at East Tennessee State University in 1957, …

Gathings, Ezekiel Candler “Took”

Ezekiel Candler “Took” Gathings represented Arkansas’s First Congressional District for thirty years (1939–1969). Throughout this period, he championed the interests of the neo-plantation elite who dominated politics and society in that region and was one of a powerful bloc of conservative Southern Democrats who frequently fought against social reform legislation introduced by more liberal members of their party. “Took” Gathings was born the youngest of eight children of Melville W. Gathings and Virgie Garner Gathings on November 10, 1903, in Prairie, Mississippi. As an infant, his parents referred to him as “Sugar,” which his two-year-old brother pronounced “Tooker”; hence, the nickname that eventually supplanted his given name. His family later moved to Earle (Crittenden County), where he graduated from high …

Gause, Lucien Coatsworth

Lucien Coatsworth Gause was a Democratic member of the U.S. House of Representatives. He represented the First District of Arkansas in the Forty-Fourth and Forty-Fifth Congresses, serving from 1875 to 1879. Lucien C. Gause was born near Wilmington, North Carolina, on December 25, 1836, to Samuel Sidney Gause and Elizabeth Ann Gause. The family, which included another son, moved to Lauderdale County, Tennessee, where Gause received his earliest education, studying with a private tutor. After graduating from the University of Virginia at Charlottesville, he studied law at Cumberland University in Lebanon, Tennessee. After graduating from Cumberland, he was admitted to the bar and began to practice law in Arkansas at Jacksonport (Jackson County) in 1859. Gause was reputedly an excellent …

Gay and Lesbian Movement

aka: LGBT Movement
The gay and lesbian movement in Arkansas has historically been represented by such legal organizations as Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD), Lambda Legal, and the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), which have worked to secure the rights of gay and lesbian people in the state. However, recent years have seen an increasing organization of gay and lesbian people in Arkansas, primarily in the emergence of student groups at the University of Arkansas (UA) in Fayetteville (Washington County) and other institutions of higher education. Legal Issues and Context The first reference to homosexuality in the bound index to the now-defunct Arkansas Gazette is from October 1973, four years after the Stonewall Riots (the first “shot” fired in the Gay …

General Federation of Women’s Clubs of Arkansas (GFWC)

The General Federation of Women’s Clubs (GFWC) is an international organization dedicated to volunteerism and social reform. The Arkansas Federation of Women’s Clubs (AFWC) was admitted to the General Federation of Women’s Clubs in May 1897. Clubs belonging to AFWC have been leaders in fundraising and lobbying efforts to improve Arkansas. Some accomplishments include the establishment of libraries across Arkansas and the preservation of the Old State House in Little Rock (Pulaski County). The AFWC was formed at a conference held on April 22–23, 1897. Forty-six representatives from twenty-five clubs around the state met at the Capital Theater in Little Rock after being called together by Mrs. William C. Ratcliffe, who was there elected to lead the organization as president. …

General Improvement Fund

The General Improvement Fund was an account established by the Arkansas General Assembly in 1995 to allocate surplus state general revenues each year for capital improvement projects around the state. The fund, commonly called GIF, was a source of perpetual conflict for the governor, the Senate, and the House of Representatives, and it finally foundered after the Arkansas Supreme Court declared it unconstitutional three times and a number of legislators, lobbyists, and consultants were convicted on corruption charges over the spending. Historically, when tax collections for state general revenues—which fund the public schools and most state services—exceeded the state budgets, the leftover money each year was directed to capital projects such as buildings, renovations, and equipment at colleges, universities, and …

General Robert E. Lee Monument

The General Robert E. Lee Monument in Marianna (Lee County) is a commemorative sculpture erected in 1910 by the D. C. Govan Chapter of the United Daughters of the Confederacy to remember local men who had served in the Confederate army during the Civil War and to honor the man for whom Lee County was named. The Arkansas General Assembly created Lee County in April 1873 from parts of Phillips, Monroe, St. Francis, and Crittenden counties at the behest of William Furbush, an African-American Republican legislator representing part of Phillips County. It is likely that he chose to name the county after the Confederate leader of the Army of Northern Virginia to gain favor with the politically powerful Democrats in …

Gent v. Arkansas

Gent v. Arkansas was a U.S. Supreme Court case in which an Arkansas law designed to eliminate the distribution of obscene material was challenged. Though it did not touch directly upon the limits of the state’s ability to control obscenity, it did reinforce legal opinion that standards for obscenity must be those applied by the U.S. Supreme Court rather than local standards. In 1961, the Arkansas legislature passed Act 261, which, among other things, purported to eliminate obscene material, which was defined by the current community standards applied by the average person. The legislature based the wording of Act 261 on a model act drafted by the Council for Periodical Distributors Associations (CPDA) designed to give public prosecutors the authority …

Gentry (Benton County)

The city of Gentry, located in Benton County, was created in 1894 along the line of what eventually became the Kansas City Southern Railroad (KCS), established by Arthur E. Stilwell and designed to connect Kansas City, Missouri, with Port Arthur, Texas. At the time, the area was undergoing an economic boom due to the cultivation of orchard fruits, primarily apples, and the railroad connection made Gentry an important shipping point for fruit; the town was even called Orchard at one point. The post office opened on May 21, 1894. A newspaper, the Gentry Journal, began printing in 1894, though it was soon renamed the Journal-Advance. The city formally incorporated on July 9, 1898, named for the president of the railroad. …

Geographical Center of Arkansas Marker

The Geographic Center of Arkansas Marker was dedicated on April 12, 1936, as part of the state’s first centennial celebration. The marker was placed at a spot designated by the Arkansas Department of Transportation as the physical center of the state on Highway 5, then called the “Hot Springs Highway.” The presiding officers who participated in the dedication ceremony were Mrs. Charles H. Miller and Jeanne Weinmann, both representing the Colonel Samuel Cherry chapter of the Arkansas Society of the Daughters of American Colonists in Little Rock (Pulaski County). The Little Rock branch had been formed just four years before on January 29, 1932. That chapter was also responsible for a number of other historical markers across the state between 1928 …

Geography and Geology

Geography has played an important and continuing role in the history and culture of Arkansas. From settlement patterns to Civil War battlefields to centers of economic development and political party affiliation, geographic patterns are obvious. These are often related to the distinct physical/biological landscapes of the state, each one of which has a unique combination of limitations and potentials for human use. These landscapes often occur in regions where the character is set by the underlying geology, which in turn influences soil and vegetation. Also, climate varies across the state as a result of changes in latitude, elevation, and local topography. All of these factors combine in varied ways to make Arkansas surprisingly diverse. One approach to understanding the patterns …

Geophagy

aka: Geophagia
aka: Pica
Geophagy, or geophagia, is the practice of consuming dirt or clay. In the United States, the practice is associated with the South, where clay is still sold for consumption in some rural areas. Humans regularly ingest dirt in trace amounts in everyday life, but most Western societies declare a threshold at which deliberate consumption is treated as a symptom of physiological or psychiatric disease (called pica). Although geophagy is often met with disgust or dismissed as prehistory or pathology, it exists in many cultures around the world as a healthful if not vital practice. There are a number of reasons why humans might deliberately consume dirt. Some practitioners believe that the soil or clay affords nutrients and minerals, such as …

George Berry Washington Memorial

The George Berry Washington Memorial, located near Earle (Crittenden County), is the burial place of a man born a slave who rose to become an African-American social leader and one of the largest landowners in the county in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. George Washington Jr. was born on December 25, 1864, the son of George Washington and Hanna Washington. His parents were both born in Kentucky and were possibly the slaves of James G. Berry, one of Crittenden County’s largest landowners, who moved to Arkansas from Kentucky as early as 1833. In May 1883, Washington—who now went by the name George Berry Washington—married eighteen-year-old Ella Rostelle. They had a daughter, Elizabeth, in 1886 and a second daughter, …

George Klein Tourist Court Historic District

aka: Klein Center
aka: Racheau Center
aka: Green Elf Court
The George Klein Tourist Court Historic District at 501 Morrison Avenue in Hot Springs (Garland County) is a well-preserved example of Craftsman-style roadside lodging. Built by 1939 as a tourist court and apartments consisting of seven bungalows around an octagonal two-story office building, it later became the Green Elf Court Apartments. The district was added to the National Register of Historic Places on June 8, 1993. Hot Springs was an established resort town before the Civil War because of the widespread belief that the hot springs had medicinal qualities. The first bathhouses predated the federal government reserving the land around the springs in 1832. Access to the area increased over time, first via a narrow-gauge railway from Malvern (Hot Spring …