Entries - Entry Category: Arts - Starting with C

C. E. Forrester House

The C. E. Forrester House is located on Danville Street near the Commercial Historic District in Waldron (Scott County). The house was built in 1896 by prominent businessman and philanthropist Charlie Edward (C. E.) Forrester. It was listed on the National Register of Historic Places on September 3, 1998. Charlie Forrester was born in Parks (Scott County) in 1871. He began his career in Waldron by working in his father’s general store. He eventually bought out his father and began the Forrester-Goolsby Corporation. His commercial ventures expanded to three Main Street businesses selling groceries, dry goods, and hardware. Forrester also began dealing in cotton and timber, and establishing several sawmills throughout the area, including the county’s largest planing mill, in …

C. E. Thompson General Store and House

The C. E. Thompson General Store and House is located in Arkadelphia (Clark County). Serving as both a store and home into the mid-twentieth century and later renovated to be used as a restaurant, the structure was added to the National Register of Historic Places on April 4, 2001. Located at the intersection of State Highways 8 and 26, the building was constructed in 1936 by the Thompson family. The Craftsman-style building was designed to serve as both a home and a store. The house sits on a continuous brick foundation but was constructed on brick piers. Covered in weatherboard, the building is topped with a composition shingled roof. Most of the windows are double hung three over one. The …

Caldwell, John Paul

John Paul “Pete” Caldwell of Parkdale (Ashley County) was a well-known banker and community leader. During the early 1960s, Caldwell’s lifelong interest in art began to flourish, and he became a widely recognized, award-winning wood engraver and woodblock print artist. John Paul Caldwell was born on December 10, 1908, to John Henry Caldwell and Sadie Caldwell. He completed school in Parkdale. In 1927, he attended the Marion Military Institute (MMI) in Marion, Alabama. In 1928, Caldwell transferred to the University of Arkansas (UA) in Fayetteville (Washington County), where he lettered on the university track team and for two years served on the Razorback yearbook staff. He was a member of Pi Kappa Alpha and Phi Nu Beta. In 1931, grappling …

Caldwell, Sarah

A member of the Arkansas Entertainers Hall of Fame, Sarah Caldwell was an internationally recognized American opera director, conductor, producer, and impresario. She was known for emphasizing the dramatic elements of opera in her productions with innovative stagings that often included spectacular visual effects. She also was known for performing and staging obscure operas that were performed only rarely because of their difficulty. Sarah Caldwell was born on March 6, 1924, in Maryville, Missouri, but grew up in Fayetteville (Washington County). Her parents divorced when she was young, and her mother—piano teacher Margaret Carrie Caldwell Baker—later married Henry Alexander, who taught political science at the University of Arkansas (UA) in Fayetteville. Recognized as a child prodigy, she was performing in public on violin …

Caldwell, Walter Garnett “Punky”

Walter Garnett “Punky” Caldwell was a musician who caught the attention of some of the best performers of the rockabilly and early rock and roll era, such as Sonny Burgess and Elvis Presley. Caldwell was known for his accomplishments on saxophone and clarinet. Notably, in the late 1950s, Caldwell played in a racially integrated band. Soon after his career took off, he left Arkansas and toured the United States and Asia. Punky Caldwell was born on October 31, 1929, in Searcy (White County), the son of Arkansas native Charles Eric Caldwell and Kansas native Thelma L. Alexander Caldwell. Caldwell was large from the start (he was more than 300 pounds as an adult), weighing nearly thirteen pounds as a newborn. …

Calhoun County Courthouse

The Calhoun County Courthouse is a 1909 building composed of a rectangular central wing flanked on all sides by a variety of projections. The courthouse includes arched double-hung windows, and arched doorways form the exterior of the first floor. The second floor houses paired, rectangular windows. While devoid of many intricacies, the building demonstrates common Classical and Colonial Revival details. On December 12, 1976, the courthouse was listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The Calhoun County Courthouse is at 309 W. Main St. in Hampton (Calhoun County), 200 feet north of the Hampton Cemetery and slightly west of the Hampton Masonic Lodge Building, both of which are also listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Constructed in …

Calico Rock Historic District

The Calico Rock Historic District covers the first block of Calico Rock (Izard County) up from the White River plus the Riverview Hotel behind Main Street. These buildings, erected from 1903 to 1924, represent early twentieth-century architectural styles. The district is typical of downtown districts that emerged along railroad lines, though Calico Rock stands out for having been built on a hillside. The district was listed on the National Register of Historic Places on November 19, 1985. In 1901, Calico Rock was a steamboat landing with few businesses. That year, the Iron Mountain Railway began laying tracks for the White River Line along the north river bank from Batesville (Independence County) to Cotter (Baxter County). Freight and passenger service to Calico Rock …

Camark Pottery

Founded in 1926, Camden Art Tile and Pottery Company was the third and last producer of art pottery in Arkansas. By the end of its first year, its name had changed to Camark to include both the city of Camden (Ouachita County) and the state of Arkansas. Camark Pottery eventually became one of Camden’s best-known industries and was known nationwide. Samuel Jacob “Jack” Carnes, a native of Zanesville, Ohio, and an engineer with knowledge of the pottery business, wished to access the regional pottery market, so he created the company with several Ohio associates, including businessmen and artists. They held a competition among twenty-five cities for its placement. Camden won the appointment in 1926. At this time, Camden was booming. …

Camp, Shawn

aka: Darrel DeShawn Camp
Shawn Camp is a singer, musician, songwriter, and record producer based in Nashville, Tennessee. His musical styles include bluegrass, country, and Americana. Shawn Camp was born Darrel DeShawn Camp on August 29, 1966, to Darrell Camp, who was an iron worker, and Betty Dickens Camp, a beautician. He was raised in Perryville (Perry County) until 1982, when his family moved to Bryant (Saline County), where he graduated from high school in 1984. His parents’ home was a gathering place for local musicians, and the family also attended bluegrass festivals, where jam sessions with young and old “pickers” were a regular occurrence. Camp started learning to play guitar at age five, mandolin at seven, and fiddle at fifteen. While he was …

Campbell, Glen

aka: Glen Travis Campbell
Glen Travis Campbell was a commercially successful and critically acclaimed entertainer whose career lasted more than fifty years. As a guitarist, Campbell appeared on recordings by a diverse range of artists, including Elvis Presley and Frank Sinatra. As a singer and solo artist, Campbell sold millions of recordings and earned many awards. He also starred in films and hosted his own television programs. Glen Campbell was born on April 22, 1936, in the Billstown community, near Delight (Pike County). He was one of twelve children born to the farming family of Carrie Dell Stone Campbell and John Wesley Campbell. Many of his relatives were musicians, and young Campbell soon developed an interest in singing and playing. He received his first …

Capital Hotel

The Capital Hotel in Little Rock (Pulaski County), situated near Arkansas’s first state capitol building (now known as the Old State House), has been part of the city’s history since 1872. Once the most luxurious hotel in the state, it often served as an unofficial political headquarters, where decisions, as well as political careers, were made. In 1974, the hotel was listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Built near the river port, the Denckla Block, as it was first known, was built to house offices, shops, and gentlemen’s apartments for businessmen. In the second half of the nineteenth century, after the end of the Civil War, Little Rock was a growing river port and rail station. There was …

Captain Charles C. Henderson House

aka: Henderson House
The Henderson House is a Queen Anne–style home with Craftsman and Neoclassical additions located in Arkadelphia (Clark County). Owned by Charles Christopher Henderson (for whom Henderson State University—HSU—was named), it was added to the National Register of Historic Places on August 24, 1998. Charles Christopher Henderson was born in Scott County on March 17, 1850. Moving with his family to Arkadelphia in 1869, Henderson worked in a number of businesses, most notably in banks, timber, and railroads. Marrying in San Antonio, Texas, in 1880, Henderson and his wife returned to Arkadelphia, where they began to purchase a number of successive houses and plots of land. On July 16, 1892, Henderson bought a plot at the corner of present-day 10th and …

Captain Isaac N. Deadrick House

The Captain Isaac N. Deadrick House was a two-story, Greek Revival–style residence constructed in 1850 in the Levesque community of Cross County. Before it collapsed around 2013, the Deadrick House was considered one of the oldest extant buildings in Cross County and the last physical building of the antebellum period in that area. The house and family cemetery were located several miles north of Wittsburg (Cross County), which was the closest population center at the time the house was built. Historians suspect that the house was constructed by slaves owned by John D. Maget (or Maggett) as a wedding present for Isaac N. Deadrick (sometimes spelled Deaderick) and Maget’s daughter, Virginia. Isaac Deadrick, his wife, and his father-in-law are buried …

Carnes, Jack

aka: Samuel Jacob Carnes
Samuel Jacob (Jack) Carnes was the founder and owner of Camark Pottery, one of Arkansas’s premier art pottery companies. Camark pottery has become highly valuable to collectors and is featured in museums such as the Old Statehouse Museum and the Historic Arkansas Museum in Little Rock (Pulaski County). Jack Carnes was born on March 12, 1896, in Zanesville, Ohio, the son of John O. Carnes, a lawyer. His mother’s name is unknown. He had one sister, Hazel, and one brother, Craig. He grew up in Cambridge, Ohio, and graduated from Cambridge High School in 1915. He received his BS degree from Muskingum College in New Concord, Ohio, on June 4, 1918, and did graduate work in engineering at the Massachusetts …

Carter, William Neal (Bill)

Bill Carter is a lawyer, former Secret Service agent, music manager and promoter, and author. He is best known for being the Rolling Stones’ lawyer who facilitated the release of two band members from custody when they were arrested in 1975 while traveling through Fordyce (Dallas County). Carter has also managed country singers Tanya Tucker and Reba McEntire. In 2013, Carter was added to the Arkansas Entertainers Hall of Fame. William Neal (Bill) Carter was born on January 19, 1936, in Rector (Clay County) to Henry Gaston Carter and Essie Faye Richardson Carter. Carter’s father was a farmer, and the family had little money when he was growing up. Carter spent time in the cotton fields as a youth and …

Case-Shiras-Dearmore House

The Case-Shiras-Dearmore House, located at 351 East 4th Street in Mountain Home (Baxter County), is a two-story wood-frame house in the Plain Traditional style, with a cut-stone outbuilding located to the rear (west side) of the house. The house is perhaps best known for its association with the noted Baxter County newspaper publisher Tom Shiras of the Baxter Bulletin. However, it was also the home of Dr. J. H. Case, the first dentist in Mountain Home. The Case-Shiras-Dearmore House was added to the National Register of Historic Places on February 3, 1992. The ell-shaped, intersecting gable roof plan of the main house features a historic gable roof addition at its northern end. The front (east) façade consists of a gable …

Casey House

The Casey House, the oldest existing house in Mountain Home (Baxter County), is a pioneer home built in the “dog-trot” style. The house is unusual, principally for the materials used in its construction. It was the home of Colonel Randolph D. Casey, who is considered one of the first citizens of Mountain Home. The Casey House was accepted into the National Register of Historic Places in 2000. Built in the pioneer dog-trot style, which is named for the breezeway that offers dogs protection from the elements, the Casey House has two large rooms on either side separated by an open breezeway through the middle. Architecturally, the Casey House is unusual in that clapboard siding sheathes the exterior and wide flush-boards …

Cash, Johnny

aka: J. R. Cash
Johnny Cash was a world-renowned singer/songwriter of country music. With his deep, rich voice and often dark, often uplifting lyrics, he created a body of work that will be heard and remembered for generations to come. J. R. Cash was born on February 26, 1932, in Kingsland (Cleveland County) to Ray and Carrie Cash. He had six siblings: Roy, Louise, Jack, Reba, Joanne, and Tommy. In 1935, the family moved to Dyess (Mississippi County), where they lived modestly and worked the land. The tragic death of Jack Cash in a 1944 sawmill accident haunted young J. R. for the remainder of his life. His mother introduced him to the guitar, and the local Church of God introduced him to music. …

Cash, Tommy

Tommy Cash is a musician and the younger brother of country music legend Johnny Cash. Although he was raised in Arkansas, he got his musical start in Tennessee—first in Memphis and later as part of the Nashville establishment. Often employing the familiar country music themes of Christianity, the blue-collar lifestyle, and patriotism, he has had numerous hit albums and songs throughout his career, among them the singles “Six White Horses,” “Rise and Shine,” and “One Song Away.” He continues to play music and give interviews about his career and life in the Cash family. Tommy Cash was born on April 5, 1940, in Dyess (Mississippi County) to Ray and Carrie Cash, both of whom were Arkansas natives; he was the youngest …

Castle, Irene

Irene Castle was a famous ballroom dancer in the 1910s to the 1930s who appeared in several silent movies and many Broadway shows. She lived in Arkansas for a time and worked for animal rights. In her autobiography, she wrote that she would like to be remembered more for her work to prevent animal cruelty than for her dance career. Irene Foote was born on April 17, 1893, in New Rochelle, New York, to Hubert Foote, a doctor, and Annie Elroy Thomas; she had one older sister. Foote attended several boarding schools as a child. She met Vernon Castle, a British citizen who was part of a comedy show, in 1910. He got her a dance audition with Lew Fields, …

Cate Brothers Band

The Cate Brothers, identical twins Earl and Ernie (born Ernest), once exemplified the country-style rock and roll that flourished in the Ozark Mountains area of northwestern Arkansas, before adding rhythm and blues (R&B), soul, and funk to their approach in a distinctly unpretentious way. The Cates were born in Fayetteville (Washington County) in 1942 and grew up in Springdale (Washington and Benton counties). Although not born to a musical family, the Cates taught themselves how to play their instruments and were heavily influenced during their teenage years by Ronnie Hawkins, whose ever-changing band, the Hawks, was at that time composed of the personnel who eventually became famous as Bob Dylan’s backup ensemble, the Band: pianist Richard Manuel, keyboardist Garth Hudson, …

Cates, Opal Taft (Opie)

Opie Cates was a popular bandleader, musician, and radio personality, known as one of the great clarinetists of the swing era (mid-1930s–mid-1940s). He was a familiar presence on radio in the 1940s, at one time appearing weekly on four different shows. By Cates’s own reckoning, his audience numbered over thirty-five million listeners. Some believe that the character of Opie Taylor on The Andy Griffith Show was named after Opie Cates. Opal Taft Cates was born on October 10, 1909, in Clinton (Van Buren County). His parents, Abb Cates and Sarah Jacobs Cates, were farmers. Abb Cates died in 1914, Sarah Cates married Lee Andrew Reaves (or Reeves) in 1916. The blended family, which included several Reaves step-siblings and a younger …

Charles “Bullet” Dean Hyten House

The house at 211 South Main Street in Benton (Saline County) was the home of Niloak Pottery creator Charles Dean “Bullet” Hyten. Now owned by former Arkansas state senator Doyle L. Webb II, the home is vacant. Because of its connection with Hyten and construction at the height of his popularity, the house was added to the National Register of Historic Places on September 24, 2012. Charles Dean Hyten was born in Benton to John Franklin Hyten and Hattie Brown Hyten on March 14, 1877. He was one of four children. After the death of her husband in 1881, Hattie married a man named Frank Woosley. Hyten and his brothers, Paul and Lee, took control of the family pottery business from Woosley …

Chicot County Courthouse

The Chicot County Courthouse is a 1950s–era Art Deco building incorporating many Corporate or Government Moderne features. It sits at 108 Main Street in Lake Village (Chicot County). Lake Village was chosen as the seat of local government in 1857, the third city to formally hold the title of county seat since the county was formed from a part Arkansas County in 1823. Both Villemont and Columbia, the former seats, were overtaken by the Mississippi River, and a third location, Masona, was temporary, with no buildings or permanent fixtures ever put in place during its two-year stint as county seat. Lake Village was the fourth and final move for local officials. The land on which the courthouse and county jail …

Christ of the Ozarks

Christ of the Ozarks is a statue located in Eureka Springs (Carroll County) on top of Magnetic Mountain. The white mortar figure of Jesus Christ is seven stories tall and weighs almost two million pounds (about 540 tons). The statue is one of five giant statues of Christ in the world and one of only two in North America. It was sculpted by Emmet A. Sullivan and funded by the Elna M. Smith Foundation. The Elna M. Smith Foundation was founded in 1965 as a non-profit organization named for, and headed by, the wife of Gerald L. K. Smith, who gained prominence as an anti-Semitic minister and political agitator in the 1930s. At a reported cost of $5,000, the foundation …

Christensen, Les

aka: Leslie Ann Christensen
Leslie Ann (Les) Christensen is director of the Bradbury Art Museum at Arkansas State University (ASU) in Jonesboro (Craighead County), but she is best known as a sculptor who works in mixed media using everyday objects to offer a vision of universal experience and common responsibility. Her artwork has been exhibited in solo and group shows throughout the United States and in Europe. Les Christensen was born on July 3, 1960, in Omaha, Nebraska, as the second of four children (and the only daughter) of Dean and Carol Christensen. She attended the University of Iowa, where she received a BFA in sculpture in 1982. She spent a year of graduate school at the Rijksuniversiteit te Utrecht in the Netherlands and …

Clark County Courthouse

The Clark County Courthouse at 4th and Clay streets in Arkadelphia (Clark County) was constructed in 1899 to replace an aging structure built in the 1840s. Except for a time when the building was closed for repair and restoration following damage from a tornado in 1997, the courthouse has operated continuously as the center of Clark County’s government. As one of the state’s oldest courthouses that is still serving the purpose for which it was constructed, the Clark County Courthouse was added to the National Register of Historic Places on December 1, 1978. Clark County was established in 1818, becoming one of the five counties in existence at the time the area became known as Arkansas Territory in 1819. Court …

Clark County Library

The Clark County Library is a purpose-built red brick building located in Arkadelphia (Clark County) at 609 Caddo Street. Constructed in 1903, it serves as the main branch of the Clark County Library System and was added to the National Register of Historic Places on November 5, 1974. The Women’s Library Association was formed in Arkadelphia on November 11, 1897, with the goal of establishing a public library. The group collected a number of books that were stored in a succession of locations in the town, but in 1899 the group was unable to find a rent-free location. At this time, the association began working to build a permanent facility to house the library. A number of fundraising events were …

Clark House (Malvern)

The Clark House in Malvern (Hot Spring County) was designed by noted Arkansas architect Charles Thompson. Incorporating design elements from both Victorian and Craftsman styles, the house was constructed in 1916 and was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1982. The home was constructed for Dayton D. Clark, a local lumber mill manager. His wife was Louise Clark, and the couple had two daughters. Clark commissioned the plans for the house from Charles Thompson’s architectural firm. The east-facing, one-and-a-half-story home is located on a corner lot at 1324 South Main Street. A porch fronts the house, wrapping around the eastern edge of the structure, which is accessed by a set of concrete steps from the circular drive. …

Clarke, Albert Oscar (A. O.)

Albert Oscar (A. O.) Clarke was a self-educated teacher-turned-architect who worked as a draftsman under the leading architect of St. Louis, Missouri, of the 1880s, Jerome Bibb (J. B.) Legg. He later partnered with William Matthews to draw dozens of commissions in St. Louis in the 1890s. Clarke was then recruited for the employ of William “Coin” Harvey for his resort in Monte Ne (Benton County), where Clarke designed the two largest log buildings in the world at the time. He went on to design Classical Revival–style structures throughout northwest Arkansas, as well as in Clarksville (Johnson County). A. O. Clarke was born on May 23, 1859, to Edgar W. Clarke, who was a Presbyterian minister, and Martha A. (Northrop) …

Classical Music and Opera

Although Arkansas is generally better known for its blues, gospel, folk, country, and rock and roll performers, classical and opera music have deep roots in Arkansas history and culture, often appearing in interesting ways in unusual places. Internationally famous Arkansan composers of classical music include Scott Joplin, Florence Beatrice Smith Price, William Grant Still, and Conlon Nancarrow. Sarah Caldwell, who grew up in Fayetteville (Washington County), was a longtime opera director in Boston, Massachusetts, and the first woman to conduct an opera at the Metropolitan Opera House in New York City. Arkansas has been home to opera singers Mary Lewis, Barbara Hendricks, Susan Dunn, Marjorie Lawrence, Mary McCormic, Robert McFerrin Sr., and William Warfield. Classical music figures prominently in academic music degree …

Clayton House

aka: W. H. H. Clayton Home
The authentically restored Clayton House, circa 1882, stands in the center of the Belle Grove Historic District in Fort Smith (Sebastian County). This twenty-two-block area features more than twenty different Victorian-era architectural styles. The massive Italianate-style home had its beginnings as the Sutton Mansion, built in 1852. Thirty years later, after serving as a Union army hospital during the Civil War and falling out of the hands of its Confederate-sympathizing owner, the home was purchased by William Henry Harrison Clayton. Clayton, who was the federal prosecutor of the famed court of Judge Isaac C. Parker, had it doubled in size, with extensive remodeling into the Victorian style. Appointed in 1874 by President Ulysses S. Grant as U.S. attorney of the …

Cleburne County Courthouse

The Cleburne County Courthouse was constructed in 1914 on the courthouse square in Heber Springs (Cleburne County). It was listed on the National Register of Historic Places on July 12, 1976. Upon the establishment of Cleburne County in 1883, the Sugar Loaf Springs Land Company—holder of the land that would become Heber Springs (originally called Sugar Loaf Springs and then Sugar Loaf)—donated to the county a block in the center of the town. The land was set aside for the building of a courthouse, which the company bonded itself to construct. In 1884, a wooden structure was built upon this block. The building served as courthouse until 1914. In 1911, the county court appropriated $50,000 to construct a new “fireproof” …

Cleveland County Courthouse

  The Cleveland County Courthouse in Rison was designed by Theodore M. Sanders and constructed in 1911. It incorporates the Classical Revival and Modern Renaissance styles of architecture with quoins, Tuscan pilasters, and denticulated cornices. The original Cleveland County seat was Toledo, but the Toledo courthouse burned down in 1889 and all of the records inside were lost. Although Rison had been accepted as the new county seat on August 17, 1889, it was not until April 11, 1891, that Rison was formally chosen by the Arkansas Supreme Court as the new county seat after two contested elections. In 1892, a frame courthouse was constructed in Rison for $8,000. It was in use until the completion of the current courthouse in 1911, …

Cloar, Carroll James

Carroll James Cloar was a painter who earned national acclaim as a realist and surrealist. The majority of his works had conceptual ideas based on his memories from his childhood in east Arkansas. His paintings are characterized by flattened figures in landscapes formed of decorative patterning. One of his paintings was chosen to be among six paintings by American artists commemorating President Bill Clinton’s inauguration in 1993. Carroll Cloar was born on January 18, 1913, on a farm approximately ten miles north of Earle (Crittenden County). The son of Charles Wesley Cloar and Julia Eva Cloar, he had three brothers and one sister. He spent his childhood on his parents’ cotton farm. At the age of seventeen, Cloar moved to …

Cole, Kevin Earlee

Kevin Earlee Cole, a Pine Bluff (Jefferson County) native, is one of the most renowned mid-career artists in Atlanta, Georgia; his works are widely collected, with Bill Cosby and Michael Jordan being notable collectors. Cole’s combinations of pastels mixed with primary, vibrant acrylics applied to twisting and curling canvases are a divergence in contemporary visual arts. His well-known “necktie” pieces are thematically linked to the history of African Americans in Pine Bluff, Tarry (Lincoln County), and Star City (Lincoln County)—areas that saw much racial violence during the early and middle 1900s. In 2018, he was inducted into the Arkansas Black Hall of Fame. Kevin Cole was born on January 19, 1960, to Jessie Mae (McGlounce), a cafeteria manager for Pine …

Community Theatre

The Community Theatre in Pine Bluff (Jefferson County) is one of the oldest one-screen, nickelodeon-type theaters in Arkansas, complete with a soundproof room where mothers could take their crying children and continue to watch the movie. The renovated structure is now owned and operated by a local non-profit agency and was used for part of the Pine Bluff Film Festival. Pine Bluff’s Community Theatre first opened its doors in 1922 in what was once known as the Breckinridge Building. The building was completed in 1889 and owned by local congressman and minister to Russia Clifton Rodes Breckinridge. Contractor William I. Hilliard built the Breckinridge Building, as well as the Jefferson County Courthouse (1890). S & H Kress & Co., a …

Confederate State Capitol Building (Hempstead County)

aka: Hempstead County Courthouse of 1836
The 1836 Hempstead County Courthouse located in Washington (Hempstead County) was used as the Confederate State Capitol after Little Rock (Pulaski County) fell to Union forces in 1863. Today, it is one of the attractions of Historic Washington State Park. In 1824, Washington was designated the county seat of Hempstead County; the seat had previously been located in the northeastern part of the county. By 1835, local officials recognized the need for a new county courthouse. The circuit court had previously met in a one-room building built by Tilman L. Patterson, who also supervised the construction of the new two-story courthouse. It was built in 1836 for $1,850. Between the time of its construction and the advent of the Civil …

Conway County Courthouse

The Conway County Courthouse in Morrilton (Conway County) was designed in 1929 by Frank W. Gibb in a fusion of Greek, Roman, and Italian Renaissance architectural styles, exhibiting the diminishing popularity of the Classical Revival style during the early twentieth century. The Conway County Courthouse was listed on the National Register of Historic Places on November 13, 1989. Before the Morrilton site was chosen for the county seat, court proceedings had been held in four previous locations. In 1825, when Conway County was created, the town of Cadron was selected as the first established seat of county government. In 1829, the county seat was moved from Cadron to Harrisburg (then the house of Stephen Harris in Welbourne Township). An election ordered by …

Cook-Morrow House

When the Cook-Morrow house in Batesville (Independence County) was added to the National Register of Historic Places on July 29, 1977, it was described as “a handsome example of American Eclectic architecture, blending various styles.” Completed in 1909, the house was cited for its historical and architectural significance. That historical significance is tied to its builder, Colonel Virgil Y. Cook, and to the three generations of his family who occupied the house for almost 100 years. Born in Boydsville, Kentucky, in 1848, Cook moved to Grand Glaise (Jackson County) in 1866, where he entered the mercantile business. He married Mildred Ophelia Lamb in 1871; they had six children. A veteran of the Civil War and the Spanish-American War, Cook was …

Coolidge House

The Coolidge House, built in Helena-West Helena (Phillips County) in 1880, is an example of a Queen Anne–style cottage. Decorative details typical of the period were applied to the irregular floorplan and elevations, resulting in a decorative yet restrained dwelling of modest proportions. At the time of the house’s construction, two railroads ran through the town, and packet boats served the adjacent Mississippi River. The house was built for S. C. Moore as a gift for his daughter, Anna Leslie Moore, on the occasion of her marriage to Charles Coolidge Jr. Located at 820 Perry Street, at the corner of Perry and Poplar streets, it was built in the section of Helena referred to on the city plat map as …

Cornish House

In 1917, Little Rock (Pulaski County) architect Theo Sanders designed the Cornish House at 1800 Arch Street in Little Rock for Edward and Hilda Cornish. The Cornish House exemplifies traditional Craftsman style with the usage of many natural materials in its construction, such as brick, granite, stucco, wood, and clay tile. Edward Cornish was one of Little Rock’s most prominent and affluent bankers of the early twentieth century until his death in 1928, while his wife was instrumental in founding the organization that became the Planned Parenthood Association of Arkansas. The Cornish House was built on land covering four different lots in Little Rock’s historic Quapaw Quarter, formerly known as the Arkansas School for the Blind Neighborhood. The home was reportedly built …

Cottage Courts Historic District

Cottage Courts Historic District is a motel located at 603 Park Avenue in Hot Springs (Garland County). Constructed in 1950, it was added to the National Register of Historic Places on February 11, 2004. Park Avenue was an important transportation route in the early twentieth century, as travelers from Little Rock (Pulaski County) and other cities to the north of Hot Springs used the road to reach the growing tourist town. Service stations, lodging, and other amenities were constructed along the road to serve these visitors. Cottage Courts (or Court) was constructed late in this period and was designed as a motel rather than a traditional tourist court as many others had been in Hot Springs. The units are joined …

Cotton, Carolina

aka: Helen Hagstrom
Helen Hagstrom is best known for her country and western swing music and yodeling, as well as her appearances in numerous television specials, radio programs, and films under the name of Carolina Cotton. Nicknamed “The Yodeling Blonde Bombshell,” Hagstrom was an entertainer and teacher throughout her life. Helen Hagstrom was born on October 20, 1925, in Cash (Craighead County), where her parents, Fred and Helen Hagstrom, and maternal grandparents had a farm, growing many crops, including cotton and peanuts. During the Great Depression, Hagstrom’s father moved his wife and two daughters to San Francisco, California. Hagstrom began performing in traveling stage shows with the O’Neille Sisters Kiddie Revue. Then, after regularly visiting KYA Radio to watch Dude Martin’s Roundup Gang …

Coullet, Rhonda Lee Oglesby

Rhonda Lee Oglesby Coullet was the only Miss Arkansas ever to resign her title. After briefly fulfilling her role as Miss Arkansas 1965, she abruptly gave up her crown and went on to achieve notable successes in show business, including starring on Broadway in The Robber Bridegroom. Rhonda Oglesby was born on September 23, 1945, in Magnolia (Columbia County) to Horace and Cecil Oglesby, both employees of International Paper Company in Spring Hill, Louisiana, but she was raised in Stamps (Lafayette County). She has one brother, Scott. In 1955, the family moved to Pine Bluff (Jefferson County). She attended Sam Taylor Elementary School and Pine Bluff High School, where she was a cheerleader. She was recognized for her beauty and …

Country Music

While the precise origins of country and western music are not entirely clear, it is thought to have its roots in traditional folk music of the British Isles. Once this particular sound was brought by British immigrants to the United States, country music began to change as it was blended with the music of immigrants from other places, as well as with traditional religious hymns and the music of African slaves predominantly residing in the southern United States. Arkansas has had a firm place in the history of country music from its very beginnings in the United States, and the state has been the birthplace of many well-known country artists, as well as particular style variations of country music. While …

Craighead County Courthouse, Western District

The Craighead County Courthouse is a Depression-era, Art Deco–style building situated on the courthouse square in Jonesboro (Craighead County). It was listed on the National Register of Historic Places on September 11, 1998. During the first year after the establishment of Craighead County and the city of Jonesboro in 1859, there was no courthouse for carrying out the official business of the western part of the county. (Along with Jonesboro, Lake City also acts as a county seat, serving the eastern part of the county.) The Arkansas General Assembly designated the home of William Puryear in Jonesboro as a temporary county seat. The first permanent courthouse was a two-story frame building erected on the town square in Jonesboro in 1862. The building …

Cramer, Floyd

Pianist Floyd Cramer was one of the creators of what became known as the “Nashville sound,” a style often seen as a forerunner of the slick, upscale pop/rock that emerged in Nashville, Tennessee, in the 1990s. Cramer released fifty solo albums, had a classic hit in the song “Last Date” in 1960, and accompanied Elvis Presley on such rock and roll hits as “Heartbreak Hotel.” He was a longtime friend of producer and guitar virtuoso Chet Atkins and performed with other music luminaries, including Patsy Cline, Eddy Arnold, the Everly Brothers, Perry Como, and Roy Orbison. In the 1980s, he recorded a hit version of the theme from the Dallas TV series. Born on October 27, 1933, in Campti, Louisiana, …

Cranford, Lorraine Albert

Lorraine Albert Cranford was the founder of Ballet Arkansas—a company that traces its roots to the Little Rock Civic Ballet of the 1960s—as well as a dance teacher in the Little Rock (Pulaski County) area. Lorraine Albert was born on September 4, 1918, in Steubenville, Ohio, to Henri Albert and Arthurine Van Klempette Albert. Her mother was a ballroom dancer who started her daughter in dance classes. By the time she was three, her family lived in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Albert studied ballet under Karl Heinrich in Pittsburgh and went to New York at age fifteen to continue her dance training. Her training was not limited to classical ballet, and she studied and danced in the same shows as famous performers such as …

Crittenden County Courthouse

The Crittenden County Courthouse is a two-story brick building erected on the courthouse square in Marion (Crittenden County). Construction of the building was completed in 1911 in the Classical Revival style of architecture. The courthouse was listed on the National Register of Historic Places on August 3, 1977. The first Crittenden County seat was established in the town of Greenock. The first court was held in the home of William Lloyd in June 1826. In 1827, the county seat moved from Greenock to Marion. The present-day courthouse is one of three structures that have been built in Marion to serve as the county’s seat of government. The original courthouse in Marion was a frame building, which was destroyed by a cyclone …