Entries - Starting with G

Glaze, Thomas Arthur (Tom)

Thomas Arthur (Tom) Glaze was a lawyer whose crusade against election fraud in the 1960s and 1970s propelled him into politics and a thirty-year career as a trial and appellate judge. Fresh out of law school in 1964, Glaze went to work for an organization that investigated election fraud and irregularities—an organization secretly funded by Republican Winthrop Rockefeller. The experience consumed him and inspired the rest of his legal career. As a deputy attorney general in 1969, Glaze rewrote Arkansas election laws, although the Arkansas General Assembly drastically weakened his draft before enacting the reforms. He was a justice of the Arkansas Supreme Court for twenty-two years, retiring in 2008. He recounted his battles with what he called “vote thieves” …

Gleason, George

At age twenty-five, George Gleason left his new legal career with a prestigious Little Rock (Pulaski County) law firm and purchased control of a bank in Ozark (Franklin County). After forty years of his leadership as chairman and chief executive officer, what is now Bank OZK grew to be the largest bank in Arkansas. Publicly owned, it has been nationally recognized as one of the best-performing banks in the nation. The bank expanded to other states and became a major commercial construction lender in large metropolitan centers. George G. Gleason II was born on November 30, 1953, in Dardanelle (Yell County), the youngest of four children of George G. Gleason and Mildred Stewart Boyce Gleason. He has three sisters, Marcia, …

Glen Rose (Hot Spring County)

  Glen Rose is located ten miles northeast of Malvern (Hot Spring County) on U.S. Highway 67. Residents of this community have Malvern mailing addresses and phone numbers, but the population of the area is served by its own school district. There are two stories as to how the community of Glen Rose got its name. One story states that when a salesman called on the school, he learned that the school did not yet have a name. He suggested Glen Rose—Glen for “valley” and Rose for the rose bushes on the campus. However, a 1941 Malvern Daily Record article states that the community was named for a coach, Glen Rose, at the University of Arkansas (UA) in Fayetteville (Washington County). Rose …

Glenwood (Pike County)

Glenwood (Pike County), on U.S. Highway 70 west of Hot Springs (Garland County), is nestled in a bend of the Caddo River with a spectacular view of Arkansas’s Ouachita Mountains. It lies in what was once rated as the “best timber country in western Arkansas” and was the home of Arkansas poet, journalist, and humorist, Graham Burnham, publisher of the Glenwood Newspress and the Houn’Dog. Glenwood is also the location of historic Bethel Missionary Baptist Church, the oldest active church in the area, organized in August of 1848. Early Twentieth Century Glenwood’s origins can be traced to a number of large commercial ventures that began about 1900. One was the building of the Gurdon and Fort Smith Railroad (G&FTS) along …

Glenwood Iron Mountain Railroad Depot

The Glenwood Iron Mountain Railroad Depot is a former depot located in Glenwood (Pike County). Constructed around 1910 by the St. Louis, Iron Mountain and Southern Railroad, it was added to the National Register of Historic Places on June 28, 1996. Glenwood was platted in 1907 when the railroad reached the area. The area around the town soon began to support a number of lumber mills, and the settlement grew rapidly. In order to ship the large amounts of timber from the area quickly, another rail line was laid in 1910. Few details from the construction are available. Although the building is currently a single-story frame structure on a concrete-block foundation, the depot was originally constructed with a central second …

Global Ties Arkansas

aka: Arkansas Council for International Visitors
Global Ties Arkansas—formerly the Arkansas Council for International Visitors (ACIV)—is part of the national organization Global Ties U.S., which is based in Washington DC. Global Ties U.S. consists of more than ninety nonprofit organizations around the country. Both Global Ties U.S. and all the ninety-plus organizations are private nonprofits, but they receive international visitors sent to them by the U.S. Department of State. Most of the local organizations are citywide, and a few, such as Global Ties Arkansas, are statewide in coverage. The visitors brought to the United States have been identified as individuals in a position—now or in the future—likely to influence issues related to American foreign policy. Global Ties Arkansas receives international officials and leaders in the areas …

Glosson, Lonnie Elonzo (Marvin)

Lonnie Elonzo Glosson popularized the harmonica nationwide and had a hand in several hit songs during a time when radio stations employed harmonica orchestras. From a young age, Glosson’s ability and versatility on the harmonica stood out. Lonnie Marvin Glosson was born the seventh of eleven children on February 14, 1908, in Judsonia (White County) to Cora Busby Glosson and George H. Glosson. He later changed his middle name to Elonzo because he did not like the uncle after whom he was named. Glosson’s mother taught him the harmonica after he earned money to buy the instrument by picking cotton: “She showed me how to play ‘Home Sweet Home,’ and I took it from there.” His father owned a boat …

Glover, D. D.

aka: David Delano Glover
David Delano “D. D.” Glover served in the Arkansas legislature (1909–1911), as prosecuting attorney of Arkansas’s Seventh Judicial Circuit (1913–1917), and as a Democratic representative to the U.S. Congress from Arkansas’s Sixth Congressional District (1929–1935). During Glover’s tenure in the Arkansas legislature, he chaired the Capitol Commission that oversaw the troubled completion of the Arkansas State Capitol building. D. D. Glover, the second of William H. Glover and Margaret Crowson Glover’s seven children, was born on January 18, 1868, in Prattsville (Grant County), where his parents owned a family farm. He attended schools in Prattsville and Sheridan (Grant County) and graduated from Sheridan High School in 1886. On December 24, 1891, Glover married Roberta Theodosia Quinn, whose father, Thomas W. …

Gober, Hershel Wayne

Hershel Wayne Gober is an Arkansas native who followed a career in the military with business and government positions. Gober held high-level posts in the Department of Veterans Affairs at both the state and national levels under President Bill Clinton. Hershel W. Gober was born on December 21, 1936, in Monticello (Drew County). One of eight children of Jimmie Price Gober and Wade Harvey Gober, he grew up in Monticello and attended the local public schools. He received his undergraduate degree from Alaska Methodist University (now Alaska Pacific University) in Anchorage. Gober married Olivia DeArmond on April 5, 1956, and they went on to have six children before the marriage ended in divorce. Following graduation from college, Gober joined the …

God’s Not Dead 2

God’s Not Dead 2 is a 2016 Christian-themed movie starring Melissa Joan Hart and directed by Harold Cronk. Filmed in central Arkansas, the movie is a sequel to the 2014 film God’s Not Dead and centers upon Grace Wesley (played by Hart), a high school history teacher who encounters legal trouble for incorporating words from Christian scripture in a classroom lesson. During a lesson about civil rights figures such as Martin Luther King Jr. and Mahatma Gandhi, student Brooke Thawley (played by Hayley Orrantia), in her history class at the fictional Martin Luther King Jr. High School, asks teacher Wesley about the religious origins of King’s commitment to non-violence. Wesley’s answer incorporates a few lines of Christian scripture, specifically Jesus’s …

God’s Not Dead: A Light in Darkness

God’s Not Dead: A Light in Darkness (2018) marked the third installment in a popular franchise of Evangelical Christian–themed movies by production company Pure Flix. Like its predecessor, God’s Not Dead 2, it was filmed in central Arkansas and features several prominent landmarks. The movie was released nationally on March 30, 2018. Set in the fictional Hope Springs, Arkansas, God’s Not Dead: A Light in Darkness opens where the previous movie left off—with Pastor Dave Hill (played by David A. R. White, who also produces) in jail for refusing a subpoena for the text of his sermons. After he is bailed out by his co-pastor, Reverend Jude (Benjamin A. Onyango), he finds that his church, St. James, has become a …

Goff, “Tuffy”

aka: Findley Norris Goff
Findley Norris Goff and his partner, Chet Lauck, created Lum and Abner, a radio program based on the people of Pine Ridge (Montgomery County). It was one of the longest running and most popular programs ever on radio, heard daily across the country from 1931 to 1955 and broadcast on Armed Forces Radio during World War II. The Pine Ridge partners also successfully transferred their Lum and Abner characters to movies. Norris Goff was born on May 30, 1906, to Rome and Dora Goff in Cove (Polk County). The family moved to Mena (Polk County) by 1911, where Rome Goff expanded his wholesale general merchandise warehouse business that served stores in several surrounding counties. Another prominent Mena family was the …

Gold Mine Springs Mines

Abandoned mines play an important ecological role as temporary or permanent habitats for various biota. Many of these mines were merely short shafts dug out of the earth during a search for precious minerals or metals, whereas others became lengthy. Moreover, abandoned mines represent unique ecological resources for both invertebrates and vertebrates that utilize the mines on a permanent or temporary basis as sites for breeding, hibernating, feeding, or avoiding predators. In Arkansas, most of these abandoned mines are located within the uplands, especially the Ouachita Mountains, but some are within the Ozark Mountains. For instance, there were numerous abandoned lead and zinc mines scattered about much of the Arkansas Ozarks. Some communities were even named after the mines, such …

Goldeyes and Mooneyes

aka: Mooneyes and Goldeyes
aka: Hiodontid Fishes
North American freshwater fishes of the family Hiodontidae (order Hiodontiformes or Osteoglossiformes) include the goldeye (Hiodon alosoides) and mooneye (H. tergisus). The goldeye ranges from James Bay (bordering the provinces of Ontario and Quebec) in Canada and the Mississippi River basins from the Northwest Territory to western Pennsylvania and Ohio south to Louisiana. In Arkansas, H. alosoides is found sporadically in lakes and the larger turbid rivers of the state, including the Arkansas and Mississippi, and the smaller Black River. The mooneye (also called the “freshwater tarpon”) ranges from the St. Lawrence–Great Lakes, Mississippi River, and Hudson Bay basins from Quebec and Alberta, Canada, east to western North Carolina and south to Louisiana. In Arkansas, H. tergisus occurs in large …

Golf

Golf’s popularity in the state of Arkansas can be measured by the sport’s rich history in the state, the state’s numerous golf courses, and a number of regular collegiate, amateur, and professional tournaments. Along with several famous men and women golfers from Arkansas, the state also boasts the Natural State Golf Trail and numerous clubs and organizations devoted to the sport. Today, golf is an individual sport played with a variety of metal or graphite clubs and a single ball composed usually of urethane. The goal is to hit the ball with a club into a hole in the fewest number of strokes. Golf holes and courses stipulate “par,” or the number of strokes a first-class player should normally require. …

Good Government Committee (Little Rock)

Little Rock (Pulaski County) business leaders formed the Good Government Committee in October 1956, which convinced the city’s voters to implement the city manager form of government in the November election. The Good Government Committee insisted the city manager system would make the municipal government more efficient and honest. Critics—mostly trade unionists and African Americans—charged that the Good Government Committee was simply a front for the Greater Little Rock Chamber of Commerce and argued that the city manager form of government would place municipal power firmly in the hands of the city’s economic elite. On October 10, 1956, Mayor Woodrow Wilson Mann called for a vote on the city manager plan in the wake of a Pulaski County Grand Jury …

Good, Mary Lowe

Mary Lowe Good was a renowned chemist, industrial innovator, professor, and government leader. Good was the first woman in Arkansas to earn a PhD in the so-called hard sciences such as chemistry or physics (fellow Arkansan Margaret Pittman was awarded a PhD in bacteriology in 1929). Good was the first woman elected to the board of the American Chemical Society, and she held important U.S. government positions under the administrations of four presidents. Mary Lowe was born in Grapevine, Texas, on June 20, 1931. Her parents were Winnie Lowe, who was a teacher and librarian, and John Lowe, a school principal; she had three siblings, including Betty Ann Lowe, who became a renowned hospital administrator. In 1942, the family moved …

Goodlett Gin

The Goodlett Gin is located at 799 Franklin Street in Historic Washington State Park in Washington (Hempstead County), once the county seat for Hempstead County and the last Confederate capital of the state of Arkansas. Constructed in 1883 in nearby Ozan (Hempstead County), the gin was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1975 and moved to the park between 1978 and 1980 after it was purchased by the state. Reassembled in the park, it opened as a non-operating exhibit to the public in 1984. David Goodlett was born on April 3, 1840, in Tippah County, Mississippi. After the death of his mother in 1844, Goodlett moved with his family to Camden (Ouachita County). In 1859, he moved …

Goodspeed Histories

The Goodspeed histories of Arkansas are a collection of six volumes originally published individually between 1889 and 1891 (as well as a seventh volume published in 1894) by the Goodspeed Publishing Company of Chicago, Illinois; Nashville, Tennessee; and St. Louis, Missouri. In an effort to “gather and preserve…the enormous fund of perishing occurrence,” each volume contains an extensive description of the existing historical record of the era, often supplemented with information obtained from local citizens and public officials. Although their style, content, and the method in which they were sold suggests that they were written to appeal to the general public, the Goodspeed histories are now recognized as a valuable tool for local historical and genealogical research. The content within …

Goodwill Industries of Arkansas

Goodwill Industries of Arkansas is a not-for-profit enterprise agency that brings work to low-income individuals who otherwise face significant barriers to employment, including generational poverty and dependence on public aid, physical or mental disabilities, homelessness, periods of incarceration, substance abuse, or long-term unemployment. Goodwill Industries serves Arkansans with a host of rehabilitation services, career services centers, retail stores, and attended donation stations throughout the state. Goodwill Industries was founded in 1902 in the South End of Boston, Massachusetts, by Edgar J. Helms, a Methodist minister, who believed that all people should have the opportunity to work without regard to race, disability, or criminal history. Helms’s philosophy, summarized in the phrase “Not charity, but a chance,” expanded into a worldwide network …

Goodwin, Harvey Wilson

aka: Harvey Lee
Harvey Wilson Goodwin, who used the stage name Harvey Lee, was a gifted stage performer, singer, and internationally recognized female impersonator during the decades of the 1930s, 1940s, and 1950s. Harvey Wilson Goodwin was born on August 14, 1912, in Little Rock (Pulaski County) to Ernest Eugene Goodwin, who was a contractor, and Ella Lorena (Hicks) Goodwin, who was a homemaker; he had three siblings. His family apparently recognized and supported his early interest in the theater because his father reportedly arranged makeshift stages out of canvas and drapery material for Goodwin’s neighborhood theatrical performances. Goodwin attended elementary school in Little Rock, graduated from Little Rock High School in 1930, and briefly attended business school before he left for Washington …

Goodwin, William Shields

William Shields Goodwin was a Democratic member of the U.S. House of Representatives. He represented the Seventh District of Arkansas in the Sixty-Second through the Sixty-Sixth Congresses, serving from 1911 to 1921. William Shields Goodwin was born on May 2, 1866, in Warren (Bradley County) to Thomas Morrison Goodwin and Esther Shields Goodwin. He was educated in the local public schools before attending Farmers’ Academy in Duluth, Georgia; Cooledge’s Preparatory School; and Moore’s Business College in Atlanta. He also studied at both the University of Arkansas (UA) in Fayetteville (Washington County) and the University of Mississippi. He also studied the law and was admitted to the Arkansas bar in 1894, after which he opened a practice in Warren. He soon …

Gordon, Anderson

Anderson Gordon was a state legislator, Confederate officer, and participant in the Brooks-Baxter War. Anderson Gordon was born on February 13, 1820, in Maury County, Tennessee. The son of John Gordon and Nancy Tomlinson Gordon, he spent part of his childhood in Alabama and moved to Arkansas in 1839. The family settled about six miles north of Lewisburg (Conway County). When he was a child, his right hand was partially disabled due to a fever. Gordon engaged in a number of enterprises in Conway County, including store clerk, grocer, and farmer. He married Lydia Griffin on April 22, 1846, and the couple had ten children, three of whom survived to adulthood. In 1854, he obtained forty acres of land from …

Gordon, Nathan Green

Nathan Green Gordon was a naval pilot in World War II, Medal of Honor recipient, and lawyer. He served as lieutenant governor from 1947 to 1967, the longest tenure of one person in that office in Arkansas history. Nathan Gordon was born on September 4, 1916, in Morrilton (Conway County), the second of four children of Edward (Ed) Gordon Sr., a lawyer and one-time state representative, and Ada Ruth Gordon. Noted as “a boy who couldn’t pass up a challenge or a dare,” he showed excellence at a young age. Growing up in Morrilton, he attended public school through the tenth grade before finishing high school at Columbia Military Academy in Tennessee, where he played baseball and football and was …

Goshen (Washington County)

  The city of Goshen is a residential community in Washington County, ten miles east of Fayetteville (Washington County) on Highway 45. Although the community was named and settled early in the nineteenth century, Goshen did not incorporate as a city until 1982. Eastern Washington County was known for farmland, timber, and game when white settlers first came in the nineteenth century. James Caldwell and John Neill both owned land near the site of Goshen before the Civil War. Some sources claim that Goshen was settled in the late 1820s, but Caldwell’s land grant was not approved until 1843 and Neill’s in 1854. According to some sources, a road named Oxford Bend may have extended from Fayetteville to the settlement …

Gosnell (Mississippi County)

The city of Gosnell is a bedroom community near Blytheville (Mississippi County), a few miles south of the Missouri bootheel in northeastern Arkansas. The region was lightly populated in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, and Gosnell grew only as a result of its proximity to Eaker Air Force Base, remaining unincorporated until 1968. It has hosted the Cotton Pickin’ Festival and Tractor Pull every fall since 1991. Pre-European ExplorationLike much of the Delta region along the Mississippi River in Arkansas, the area that would become Gosnell was inhabited by various Native American tribes. A fifteen-foot mound built during the Mississippian Period (AD 900–1600) stands about two miles southeast of Gosnell. This mound is surrounded by a large late-prehistoric …

Gospel Bridges Relay Race of 2011

The Gospel Bridges Relay Race of 2011 was an attempt on the part of several Pulaski County churches to foster multicultural understanding among the various ethnic and immigrant groups inhabiting the central Arkansas area. Such good intentions did not produce the desired result, however, with the race instead inspiring headlines about cheating and acts of ritual humiliation. The race had its genesis in the social outreach efforts of Pastor Marianne Wilkins of Pulaski Heights Methodist Church. Recognizing that, nearly ten years after the events of September 11, 2001, xenophobia and anti-immigrant sentiments were far from abating, she enlisted the help of other local pastors to sponsor a relay race that would bring community members together in the spirit of friendly …

Gospel Music

Musicologists and journalists have often provided conflicting definitions of the term “gospel music.” Early African-American gospel was a blend of nineteenth-century hymns, spirituals, field songs, ragtime, and blues, while the religious music performed by white artists—an obvious antecedent to what would be labeled Southern gospel—incorporated folk, traditional hymns, and singing convention standards. Today’s Christian music is often categorized by genre, reflecting the social, racial, ideological, and generational diversity of the Christian community. This diversity is shown in a contrast of pervading traditions, varied approaches to lyric writing, and stylistic exchanges between the sacred and secular. Throughout the evolution of gospel music, Arkansas has remained at the forefront, producing noteworthy pioneers of yesterday and molding trendsetters of today. Several key figures …

Gospel of Eureka, The [Movie]

The independent documentary The Gospel of Eureka (2018), directed by Michael Palmieri and Donal Mosher, attracted acclaim for its mix of natural beauty and genial small-town tolerance. The portrait of Eureka Springs (Carroll County) focuses on the Great Passion Play, the Eureka Live Underground gay bar, and the relaxed attitudes of the organizers and patrons of both those local attractions. The filmmakers cleverly cut back and forth between two groups of enthusiastic local amateur performers: those working on the Passion Play and those appearing in the drag queen extravaganzas at the bar. Bar owners Lee Keating and Walter Burrell (a couple for thirty-one years, until Keating’s death in 2017) and Kent Butler, marketing director and star of the Passion Play …

Goss, Kay

Kay Goss is an author, educator, historian, lecturer, and emergency management official. Goss served as senior assistant for intergovernmental relations for two Arkansas governors (1982–1994) and was appointed associate director of the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), serving from 1994 to 2001. She also wrote the first full-scale biography of powerful U.S. congressman from Arkansas Wilbur D. Mills, published in 2012. Kay Gentry Collett, a native of Fayetteville (Washington County), was born on August 7, 1941. She majored in political science, public administration, and government, with a minor in history, at the University of Arkansas (UA) in Fayetteville, graduating in 1963. She earned a master’s degree from UA in 1966 before embarking on doctoral studies in public administration at West …

Gould (Lincoln County)

Gould is a city in eastern Lincoln County, situated on U.S. Highway 65 and on the Union Pacific Railroad. Formed as a railroad city in the early twentieth century, Gould received national notoriety in the twenty-first century because of the fervor of its local political confrontations. When Lincoln County was formed in 1871, the swampy land between the Arkansas River and Bayou Bartholomew was largely uninhabited. Between 1870 and 1873, construction of the Little Rock, Pine Bluff and New Orleans Railroad (which eventually became part of the Union Pacific) brought traffic through the area. The part of the line where Gould would soon be established was known briefly as Palmer Switch. George H. Joslyn Sr., the first county judge of Lincoln …

Govan, Daniel Chevilette

Daniel Chevilette Govan participated in many of the bloodiest battles of the Civil War in Tennessee and elsehwere but lived into the twentieth century, following many career paths through his long life. Daniel C. Govan was born on July 4, 1827, in Northampton County, North Carolina, to Mary Govan and Andrew Govan, who served as a U.S. representative from South Carolina. In 1832, the family relocated to Marshall County, Mississippi, where the young Govan was raised. He received his primary education from private tutoring and then attended South Carolina College (now the University of South Carolina). He left before graduating, for unknown reasons. Like thousands of other prospectors seeking their fortunes, Govan participated in the 1849 California gold rush alongside …

Government Free Bathhouse

The Government Free Bathhouse in Hot Springs (Garland County) provided free baths to the indigent, sick, and injured who sought access to the local thermal springs, which were thought to have medicinal properties. Spurred into existence by an act of Congress in 1878, the free bathhouse operated until 1957. In 1832, the federal government made the hot springs of Arkansas a federal reservation Businesses arose to offer food, lodging, and entertainment, but access to the water was free. After the Civil War, businesses tried to take ownership of the hot water. This enraged visitors, who felt that everyone had a right to access the water for no charge. On December 16, 1878, Congress passed compromise legislation that reaffirmed federal ownership …

Governor Mike Huckabee Delta Rivers Nature Center

aka: Delta Rivers Nature Center
The Governor Mike Huckabee Delta Rivers Nature Center in Pine Bluff (Jefferson County) is Arkansas’s first nature center. Located in Regional Park, it opened on July 28, 2001. It is run by the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission’s Education Division. The construction of the center, originally known as the Delta Rivers Nature Center, was funded by a conservation sales tax passed in 1996. The center consists of a 13,000-square-foot main building with exhibits highlighting Delta wildlife and history; it also includes a large meeting facility, a working laboratory, and a nature store. Located outside the main building are two aquariums totaling 22,000 gallons in volume. They display fish and other aquatic species native to the region in a natural setting. …

Governor, Office of the

Between being made a territory of the United States in 1819 and becoming a state in 1836, Arkansas was overseen by four territorial governors. Appointed by the president to a three-year term (with the possibility of reappointment), territorial governors simultaneously served as commander of the militia and superintendent of Indian Affairs, though Arkansas’s first territorial governor, James Miller, was little more than an absentee landlord. Miller was appointed on March 3, 1819, but did not arrive in Arkansas until December 26; he was later absent from April 1821 to November 1822 and left again in June 1823 never to return. He never moved his family to Arkansas. In his absence, Robert Crittenden was the de facto governor of the territory. …

Governor’s Mansion

aka: Arkansas Governor's Mansion
The Arkansas Governor’s Mansion, located on 8.5 acres on Center Street in the historic Quapaw Quarter of downtown Little Rock (Pulaski County), was established by an act of the state legislature in 1947. It was completed in January 1950 during Governor Sidney McMath’s term. Previously, Arkansas did not have an official residence for the governor of the state. The Governor’s Mansion Historic District is the area surrounding the Governor’s Mansion and was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1978. In 1944, the Arkansas Federation of Women’s Clubs, led by its president, Agnes Bass Shinn of Harrison (Boone County), began a campaign for housing for the chief executive of the state. The first effort to obtain legislative funding for …

Governor’s Mansion Historic District

The Governor’s Mansion Historic District is the area surrounding the Governor’s Mansion in Little Rock (Pulaski County). Listed on the National Register of Historic Places on September 13, 1978, the district has been expanded three times. The first two expansions of the district came in 1988 and 2002. Including properties constructed between 1880 and 1965, the boundaries of the district as of 2020 are roughly Wright Avenue, South State Street, West 22nd Street, South Chester Street, and West Roosevelt Road. A total of 626 contributing structures were included in the district with the third boundary expansion in 2018. This expansion came from a comprehensive survey completed in 2016 by the Arkansas Historic Preservation Program. The district includes the namesake Governor’s …

Gowrow

The gowrow, one of several fabulous monsters reported in Arkansas popular lore, may owe its origins more to journalism than to traditional narrative and folk belief. The principal documentation of the creature’s existence is a story that appeared in the Arkansas Gazette on January 31, 1897, apparently written by Elbert Smithee. Elmer Burrus provided an illustration, allegedly based on a photograph, to accompany the piece. Fred W. Allsopp, who edited the Gazette at the time, recounted the circumstances that led to Smithee’s story. William Miller, a Little Rock businessman who had been traveling in the Ozarks of northwest Arkansas, told Smithee of a “horrible monster” known as the gowrow. Its name came from the noise it made during its nocturnal …

Gracen, Elizabeth Ward

aka: Grace Elizabeth Ward
Grace Elizabeth Ward was the 1981 Miss Arkansas and 1982 Miss America. When she began her acting career in 1987, she changed her name to “Elizabeth Ward Gracen,” because another Elizabeth Ward was already in the Screen Actors Guild. In 1992, she became the first former Miss America to appear on the cover of Playboy magazine and in a nude pictorial feature. Grace Elizabeth Ward was born on April 3, 1961, in Ozark (Franklin County) to Jimmy and Patricia Ward. Ward’s father was a supervisor at various poultry factories. Her mother was a registered nurse. She has a younger brother, Van Thomas Ward, and younger sister, Mary Margaret Ward. Ward graduated from Russellville High School in Russellville (Pope County) in …

Grady (Lincoln County)

Grady is a second-class city in northern Lincoln County. Located near the Cummins Unit of the Arkansas Department of Correction, the city is bisected by Business Highway 65 but bypassed by the main highway, which runs from northwest Arkansas to southeast Arkansas, including such cities as Harrison (Boone County), Conway (Faulkner County), Little Rock (Pulaski County), Pine Bluff (Jefferson County), and Eudora (Chicot County). The first settlers of Grady included John S. Hall, who came with his family from South Carolina in 1846, and J. P. Williams, who immigrated to Arkansas from Ireland. The settlement was first called Hall’s Landing, but when Williams built the first store in the community and helped to establish a post office in 1881, the …

Graham (Independence County)

The historic community of Graham was located in Washington Township near where Lock and Dam No. 3 on the White River is today. It is on the Lock 3/Webber Chapel Road near Pilgrim Holler, about two miles north-northwest of Bethesda (Independence County). The University of Arkansas Livestock and Forestry Station is located on land that was once part of Graham. Moses Graham was a son-in-law of Abraham Ruddell, who helped establish Ruddell Mill, one of the first water-powered mills in the White River valley. Graham owned a farm at Bell Point on the White River opposite the mouth of Salado Creek. In 1815, he was appointed, along with the widow of John C. Luttig, as administrator of the Luttig estate. …

Graham, David Crockett (D. C.)

David Crockett (D. C.) Graham was a Baptist missionary and pioneer anthropologist in southwestern China. Over the course of almost four decades in Sichuan Province, Graham, through his publications and museum work, introduced to the English-speaking world the cultures of several little known peoples, and introduced modern archaeology in the region. D. C. Graham was born in Green Forest (Carroll County) on March 21, 1884, to the farming family of William Edward Graham and Elizabeth (Atchley) Graham; he was one of nine children, five of whom died young. After his mother died, the family moved to the Walla Walla, Washington, area when Graham was about four. He attended Whitman College in Walla Walla, where he was active in the Young Men’s …

Graham, Fred Patterson

Journalist Fred Graham was the dean of television news Supreme Court reporting in the 1970s and into the 1980s. Building upon his tenure as the U.S. Supreme Court reporter for the New York Times, and as law correspondent for CBS News, Graham pioneered television coverage of the nation’s highest court. Later, he became involved in the launch of cable television’s Court TV, where he continued to report and offer analysis of the American legal system and legal issues in the United States. Fred Patterson Graham was born in Little Rock (Pulaski County) on October 6, 1931, to Otis and Lois Graham. His family included an older sister and two younger brothers. He received his early education in Texarkana (Miller County) …

Graham, Josephine Hutson

Josephine Hutson Graham was a prolific artist, educator, author, and folklorist of Arkansas’s White River culture and cuisine. She won many local, regional, and national art awards and held more than twenty one-woman shows throughout the South and Southwest, as well as shows in New York, Washington DC, and Dallas, Texas. Josephine Hutson was born in Newport (Jackson County) on April 12, 1915, to Thomas Hutson (a cotton broker) and Mary Bailey Hutson; she had one younger brother. After high school graduation in Newport, Graham attended the University of Texas for three years before transferring to the University of Arkansas (UA) in Fayetteville (Washington County). She earned a bachelor’s degree in English. She married Thomas Nathan Graham, a farmer and …

Graham, William Karr (Bill)

William Karr (Bill) Graham is best known as the longtime editorial cartoonist for the Arkansas Gazette. He also published a book of cartoons and had his work exhibited in the United States and abroad. Bill Graham was born on December 14, 1920, in Coshocton, Ohio, the only child of Lorenzo Karr Graham and Zola Jean McGinnis Graham. He received a BS in social science from Centenary College in Shreveport, Louisiana, in 1942, studying history and economics. He had no formal artistic training but was influenced by reading the Cleveland Plain Dealer, the Columbus Dispatch, the Philadelphia Record, and the Sunday edition of the New York Times. He liked the cartoons in the Record and the reprints of editorial cartoons from …

Grand Army of the Republic (GAR)

The Grand Army of the Republic (GAR) was a fraternal organization for Union veterans. The first GAR posts (chapters) originated in Illinois in 1866. The patriotic organization had a surprisingly strong presence in Arkansas, a Confederate state. In the 1860s, the earliest Arkansas chapters had many African-American veterans of the Union army living in Arkansas. Toward the end of the nineteenth century, GAR chapters tended to be controlled more by white Arkansans uncomfortable with the post-Reconstruction resurgence of the Democratic Party in Arkansas. One of the first goals of the GAR was to assist widows and orphans of fallen Union soldiers and sailors. The organization’s motto was: “Fraternity, Charity, Loyalty.” Soon after it organized, the GAR pushed for the establishment …

Grand Army of the Republic Monument (Gentry)

The Gentry Grand Army of the Republic Memorial is located in the northeast section of Gentry Cemetery in Gentry (Benton County) and was erected in 1918 by the Charles Harker Post of the Grand Army of the Republic (GAR). Along with monuments in Judsonia (White County) and Siloam Springs (Benton County), it is one of only three known GAR memorials in Arkansas. The Grand Army of the Republic was a national organization of Union Civil War veterans initially formed to help the widows and orphans of fallen Union servicemen and to support the Republican Party. It later focused on promoting patriotic activities and decorating the graves of the war dead. The first GAR camp was established in Decatur, Illinois, in …

Grand Army of the Republic Monument (Judsonia)

The Grand Army of the Republic Monument located in the north-central section of Evergreen Cemetery in Judsonia (White County) was erected in 1894 by the W. T. Sherman Post No. 84 of the Grand Army of the Republic (GAR). It is one of three such monuments known to have been erected in Arkansas, the others being in Siloam Springs (Benton County) and Gentry (Benton County). The Grand Army of the Republic was a national organization of Union Civil War veterans initially formed to help the widows and orphans of fallen Union servicemen and to support the Republican Party; it later focused upon promoting patriotic activities and decorating the graves of the war dead. The first GAR camp was established in …

Grand Army of the Republic Monument (Siloam Springs)

The Grand Army of the Republic Monument located in Twin Springs Park in Siloam Springs (Benton County) was erected in 1928 by the S. R. Curtis Post No. 9 of the Grand Army of the Republic’s Arkansas Department. It is one of three such monuments known to have been erected in Arkansas, the others being in Gentry (Benton County) and Judsonia (White County). The Grand Army of the Republic (GAR) was a national organization of Union Civil War veterans initially formed to help the widows and orphans of fallen Union servicemen and to support the Republican Party; it later focused on promoting patriotic activities and decorating the graves of the war dead. The first GAR camp was established in Decatur, …

Grand Glaise (Jackson County)

aka: Grand Glaize (Jackson County)
During its heyday in the 1850s, the river port town of Grand Glaise (Jackson County), located on one of the highest points on the banks of the White River, was one of the largest towns in the area. Before the Civil War, the town, located about ten miles downriver from present-day Newport (Jackson County), served as an area commercial hub. The first white settler, Stith Tucker, arrived in the area in about 1817. By the late 1820s, a thriving river port named Grand Glaize had begun to develop. The first steamboat in the port, the Laurel, docked there in 1829. Further growth was prompted by the construction of a road in 1847 connecting the town to Searcy (White County). Several …