Social Hill (Hot Spring County)
Social Hill of Hot Spring County is located seven miles southwest of the junction of the Ouachita River and the Old Military Road at Highway 84, and about ten miles from Malvern (Hot Spring County). Adam Blakely was the first to homestead land at Social Hill, in the 1820s. He built the dogtrot-style Blakely House on the peak of the hill in 1837. Farming was the main economic activity in the community.
The area’s Methodist church was first organized as Pisgah Methodist Church in 1874, but the name was later changed to Lone Hill Methodist. It then became known as Social Hill Methodist Church.
The school building located at Haw Branch, a shallow stream, was occupied by students during the week, and Baptists and Methodists alternated church services each Sunday in the same building. Children played at Haw Branch and picked fresh, ripe haw fruits when they were in season.
In 1935, Governor Homer Adkins and his wife bought the old Blakely House as a summer home, along with many farming acres. The Adkinses became involved with the community and helped fund a new building for Social Hill Methodist Church, which was renamed Adkins Memorial Methodist Church.
Residents who grew up in the area recall having a gas station and a small store in Social Hill in the 1970s, with the store remaining until the 1990s. In the twenty-first century, Social Hill has little more than churches.
For additional information:
“Blakely House.” National Register of Historic Places nomination form. On file at Arkansas Historic Preservation Program, Little Rock, Arkansas. Online at http://www.arkansaspreservation.com/historic-properties/_search_nomination_popup.aspx?id=1519 (accessed May 15, 2013).
Finch, Bernice. “Social Hill Methodist Church Has Very Interesting History.” Heritage 33 (2006): 51–56.
Hot Spring County Historical Society
Last Updated: 07/03/2018