Newhope (Pike County)
The earliest settlers in the area included Andrew Cannon, who obtained 400 acres from the Federal Land Office in Camden in the area in 1860 and 1861. Several other settlers also purchased land in the area at the same time, including John Gafford and Henry Haynes in 1860.
The first business to open in the area, a store owned by George Copley, opened in 1876. Copley moved to nearby Star of the West and operated the post office. A second store opened in 1878, and a post office opened under the direction of postmaster Levi Forester. Other businesses opened in the community, including a blacksmith, a sawmill, a grist mill, a cotton gin, and a school, all before 1890. The mills and gin were operated by James Huey. The original name of the town was New Hope, but the name of the post office changed to Newhope in 1895.
By 1900, the town had thirteen stores, two school buildings, a doctor, a dentist, four churches, a drugstore, and a Masonic hall. A newspaper titled The Yellow Jacket was published in the town, and a second publication called the Arkansas Traveler began in 1903. It consolidated with another newspaper in Murfreesboro (Pike County) after only a short time.
A high school and elementary school operated in the town, attracting students from across Pike County. It consolidated in 1949 with Dierks (Howard County), and students from the area attend schools in either Kirby (Pike County) or Dierks in the twenty-first century.
Newhope is located at the intersection of U.S. Highway 70 and Arkansas Highway 369. Highway 70 began appearing on state road maps in 1922; it was paved in 1954. In 1952, Highway 369 began appearing on state road maps as a gravel county road. It was added to the state highway system in 1966 and was paved in 1976.
For additional information:
Pike County Heritage Club. Early History of Pike County, Arkansas: The First One Hundred Years. Murfreesboro, AR: Pike County Heritage Club, 1978.
Henderson State University
Last Updated: 02/26/2020