Center Point (Clark County)
Center Point is a small community in Clark County located about four miles northwest of Gurdon (Clark County). The community is centered at the intersection of Center Point Road and Arkansas Highway 53.
The first landowner in the area was Lewis Randolph, who received a land patent of just under 600 acres on December 1, 1838. The issuance of the patent took more than a year to process, as Randolph died on September 24, 1837, more than a year before the patent received approval.
The population in the area grew slowly before the Civil War. After the end of the war, the population began to grow and small-scale farming began. With the opening of the Cairo and Fulton Railroad in 1874, the population in nearby Gurdon quickly increased, with Center Point also growing. With large portions of the area covered in timber, the Center Point community supported that industry by providing workers to nearby mills, and much of the nearby timber was harvested.
The major fixture in the community is the Center Point Baptist Church, located on Center Point Road. Organized in March 1953, the church began as a mission of the nearby South Fork Baptist Church. Early members of the church are buried at the nearby South Fork Cemetery. The South Fork and Center Point areas were historically closely intertwined but were later separated by Interstate 30. South Fork supported a school from an unknown date until 1945, when it consolidated with Gurdon. It is likely that children from the Center Point community attended that school.
Never a large settlement, the area serves as a bedroom community for the nearby towns of Gurdon and Arkadelphia (Clark County) in the twenty-first century. Center Point Baptist Church continues to operate in the community. A large portion of the area continues to be used for timber growth and farming.
For additional information:
Richter, Wendy, ed. Clark County, Arkansas: Past and Present. Arkadelphia, AR: Clark County Historical Association, 1992.
Henderson State University
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