Entries - Entry Category: Business and Economics - Starting with T

Tall Pines Motor Inn Historic District

aka: Tall Pines Inn
The Tall Pines Motor Inn Historic District is a well-maintained example of the Rustic architectural style of roadside lodging that has been popular in rural areas since the earliest days of travel by car. Located at the intersection of Highway 62 and Pivot Rock Road one mile west of Eureka Springs (Carroll County), it has operated continuously since 1947 under various names, including the Tall Pines Court, Tall Pines Motel, Tall Pines Motor Lodge, Tall Pines Motor Inn, and Tall Pines Inn. Its seven original log structures were added to the National Register of Historic Places as the Tall Pines Motor Inn Historic District on January 15, 1999. In the early part of the twentieth century, nostalgia for a simpler time …

Tate Plantation Strike of 1886

In 1886, the Knights of Labor engaged in two strikes in Arkansas. The first of these strikes, the Great Southwestern Strike, involved railroad workers from Texas to Illinois. It began in March and ended in failure by May. The second strike occurred in July at the Tate Plantation in Young Township of Pulaski County, nine miles south of Little Rock (Pulaski County) on the Arkansas River. While this strike also proved unsuccessful, and much briefer, it remains significant because all of the strikers were African Americans, and it foretold efforts at black farm labor activism that would continue in Arkansas well into the twentieth century. Formed in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, in 1869, the Knights of Labor spread across the nation during …

Taylor Rosamond Motel Historic District

The Taylor Rosamond Motel Historic District is made up of four buildings, including a motel constructed around 1950 and a home constructed between 1908 and 1915. Located at 316 Park Avenue in Hot Springs (Garland County), the property was added to the National Register of Historic Places on May 26, 2004. The first structure on the lot was an Italianate-style home constructed by W. S. Sorrell between 1908 and 1915. The building is two stories with a full basement and a tower located on the southwest corner. The wood-framed building is covered with concrete blocks. The house is square with a wing topped with a gable roof extending to the west. A porch is present on the west and south …

TCBY Enterprises, Inc.

During a nineteen-year period, TCBY Enterprises, Inc. grew from a single store in Little Rock (Pulaski County) to a 3,000-outlet franchise. Selling flavored frozen yogurt, TCBY was known around the world. Until 2004, the tallest building in Arkansas was known as the TCBY Tower and bore those four letters on its upper floors. Frank Hickingbotham, an Arkansas native, opened his first frozen yogurt store in 1981 in Little Rock. Prior to this, Hickingbotham had been a junior high school principal, an insurance salesman, and the owner of several other food businesses, which he sold before founding TCBY. Hickingbotham had become acquainted with frozen yogurt a few years earlier on a visit to Dallas, Texas, when he sampled some at a …

That Bookstore in Blytheville

In the early 1970s, Mary Gay Shipley, then a schoolteacher, saw a void in her hometown and opened a paperback exchange store affiliated with a Memphis, Tennessee, group called The Book Rack. Ultimately, she found a space in a former jewelry store in downtown Blytheville (Mississippi County). The bookstore has remained at 316 W. Main Street since 1976. Though locals called it “that bookstore” for years, the store did not become officially known as That Bookstore in Blytheville until 1994. The store’s varied selections of fiction, non-fiction, and children’s literature occupy over 2,400 square feet. That Bookstore in Blytheville specialized in Southern writers and books on Southern culture, with emphasis on the work of Arkansas writers. A champion of literacy, …

Thea Foundation

Paul and Linda Leopoulos founded the Thea Foundation in 2001, six months after their seventeen-year-old daughter Thea Kay Leopoulos died in a car accident. The nonprofit foundation’s mission is based on the idea that young people achieve confidence and personal success due to involvement with the arts. The Leopouloses found this to be true of their daughter, and they wanted other young people to benefit from the arts as Thea had. The Thea Foundation’s scholarship program awards Arkansas high school seniors based on their hard work and artistic talents. The twenty-eight scholarships in the categories of visual and performing arts, short film, creative writing, and poetry slam are not based on test scores or GPAs, nor do the students have …

Thompson, David Aiken

David Aiken Thompson came to Arkansas as the Arkansas Territory was beginning to show rapid growth, attracting settlers from eastern states and offering opportunities for business and land speculation. Thompson became one of the largest land speculators in Arkansas. At the height of his operations, he reportedly either owned outright or had an interest in 150,000 acres of land in sixteen Arkansas counties. David Thompson was born on April 4, 1796, at New Castle, Delaware, to Dr. David Thompson and his second wife, Frances Aiken Thompson. His father died two months before he was born. His mother soon moved to Jonesboro, Tennessee. There, she met John McAlister, and they married on December 25, 1800. Thompson grew up in Jonesboro and …

Thompson, Green Walter

Green Walter Thompson was a major African-American political leader and businessman in Little Rock (Pulaski County) from the end of the Civil War until his death. Green Thompson was born Green Elliott, a slave on the Robert Elliottt farm in Ouachita County. Nothing is known of his early life, though his tombstone lists a birth date of August 15, 1847. A birth year of 1848 is estimated from documents accumulated later in his life. The 1880 census records him as a “mulatto,” so it is likely a white man fathered him. His mother eventually married a slave named Thompson, and Green Elliott took his stepfather’s name. While a teenager, he married a slave named Dora Hildreth; they soon had a …

Timber Industry

The timber industry in Arkansas developed in all directions after the Civil War. The abundant forests of the state made it possible over the years to produce lumber, kraft paper, fine paper, newsprint, chemicals, charcoal, and many other products. The industry’s development depended first upon the availability of abundant forests. From Little Rock (Pulaski County) in central Arkansas to the north, west, and south are forests and marketable timber. To the east is the Delta, where hardwood grows in the swamps and river bottoms. The Ozark Mountains in the north are home to a mix of slower-growing pine and hardwood. The Ouachita Mountains to the west abound in pine on the slopes and hardwood in the valleys. The rolling hills …

Tinkle Pot

The Tinkle Pot is a novelty musical toilet created by Searcy (White County) drug store owner Frank Headlee, who also served as mayor of Searcy from 1951 to 1956. Essentially, it is a modified plastic commode for a child that plays music when the seat and lid are put down; when closed, the seat compresses a pin and lever that activate a music box inside the Tinkle Pot. In order to play, the music box must first be wound by hand. The Tinkle Pot itself weighs between one and two pounds, and it also features a handle on the back of the toilet for easy carrying. Headlee had the idea to manufacture the Tinkle Pot for sale in his drug …

Tomato Industry

The tomato industry has a long history in Arkansas and is particularly known in the northwestern and southeastern areas of the state. Tomatoes appeared early in the state’s history. During the 1830s, Albert Pike, who owned the Arkansas Advocate newspaper, made the tomato the centerpiece of his campaign to expand food choices for the state. However, tomatoes were not grown on a large scale until commercial canning plants became common in the state. The town of Yocum (Carroll County), for example, had a plant operating in the 1880s, and in subsequent decades, canneries and tomato sheds were built across the state. Tomatoes grown in the Ozark Mountains were packaged in a variety of ways, from whole tomatoes to catsup. During …

Tomson, Dan Fraser

A native of Tennessee, Dan Fraser Tomson helped organize—and was a charter member of—the first local assembly (or lodge) of the Knights of Labor in Arkansas. He also served as a state organizer and lecturer and, eventually, as the Knights’ highest-ranking state officer. In addition, he edited a weekly newspaper, the Industrial Liberator, which served as the official organ of the Arkansas Knights of Labor, and he became a significant figure in the national Knights of Labor organization. He served in a variety of military- and government-related jobs throughout his life, including as a clerk in Washington DC, copying the Civil War records of Missouri soldiers; a staff member in the Missouri Senate; and a clerk in the Missouri adjutant …

Tourist Camps, Tourist Courts, and Early Motels

Tourist camps and courts were a common form of lodging for travelers in the United States from the 1930s to the 1960s. The terms “tourist camp” and “tourist court” were used to describe both an individual cabin or room rented for the night and the business as a whole. In their early days, they typically consisted of stand-alone structures that looked and functioned like small houses, with as few as four units to rent. Those built during and after World War II were increasingly likely to be under a single roof in the form recognizable today as motels. Unlike earlier hotels that served mostly railroad passengers, tourist camps and courts evolved along roadways to accommodate the needs of the newly …

Tripoli Mining

Tripoli is a microcrystalline form of quartz (SiO2) that is derived by the alteration of chert, chalcedony, or novaculite, or leaching of highly siliceous limestones. The removal of carbonate is essential to the formation of Arkansas tripoli. Tripoli is present in three general areas of Arkansas: northwestern Arkansas near Rogers (Benton County), in the Ouachita Mountains near Hot Springs (Garland County), and near Athens (Howard County). Tripoli has varied uses. Due to its inert nature and its fine-grained texture, tripoli has numerous applications, mainly as an abrasive in polishing, buffing, and burnishing compounds; in scouring soaps and powders; a filler or extender in plastics, rubber, and sealants like caulks and epoxy resins; and a pigment in paints. It also improves …

Trucking Industry

The trucking industry plays a significant role in Arkansas’s agricultural and industrial life. Trucks transport many Arkansas products through and out of the state, including poultry, lumber, sand and gravel, cotton, and farm produce. Trucks also bring necessities and luxuries into Arkansas. Businesses such as Walmart Inc. and Tyson Foods Inc. rely on the trucking industry for their survival. Although Arkansas’s location was a detriment to industrial development and the transportation that accompanied industry prior to World War II, several factors have made the state a leader in trucking since the middle of the twentieth century. Large agricultural establishments such as those of the Delta region of Arkansas were not viable in the hills of northwest Arkansas, which resulted in …

Trulock, Amanda Beardsley

Amanda Beardsley Trulock was an antebellum woman from Connecticut who married a Georgia cotton planter, migrated to Arkansas, and eventually became a plantation proprietor and sole owner of sixty-two slaves near Pine Bluff (Jefferson County). She was one among the small number of American women from abolitionist New England who married into a slave-owning family before embracing the institution of slavery herself. However, largely due to her “Yankee” heritage and continued association with her New England family, Trulock was an atypical example of an antebellum slaveholder in the Delta. Her personal papers (primarily correspondence to her Connecticut family) represent an important documentation of plantation life, the Civil War, and emancipation in Arkansas history. Born on April 22, 1811, to Nicholas …

Turney Wood Products, Inc.

In 1946, Claude H. Turney opened Turney Wood Products, Inc. (TWP) in Harrison (Boone County). It began operation in a garage, building furniture for the First Church of the Nazarene in Harrison. For more than twenty years, TWP used hardwood lumber—mainly red and white oak—from the surrounding Ozark Mountain forests to manufacture laminated church furniture, including pews, altars, pulpits, and lecterns. According to a 1965 company newsletter, “Operating in every timber activity from the forest to the finished product…this company has become the largest exclusive church furniture manufacturer in the western hemisphere.” The company closed in 1968. In the mid-1950s, TWP employed more than 100 workers. The company eventually grew to employ more than 300, with three plants for different phases …

Tyson Foods, Inc.

Founded in 1935 in Springdale (Washington County), Tyson Foods has emerged as one of Arkansas’s most prominent companies, employing more than 100,000 workers. By the end of the twentieth century, it had become one of the largest meat-processing companies in the world, with millions of customers in the United States and in more than eighty countries worldwide. Forbes magazine currently lists it as one of America’s 100 largest companies, and it continues to play a pivotal role in the state’s economy. Following the collapse of the fruit industry in northwest Arkansas in the late 1920s, many farmers turned to raising poultry as a source of income. The connection of Highway 71 to Midwest markets such as Kansas City, Missouri, allowed …

Tyson, Don

Donald John Tyson was president and CEO of Tyson Foods. By the close of the twentieth century, along with Walmart Inc. founder Sam Walton, Don Tyson was considered one of the pioneers of modern Arkansas economic history, as well as a giant in the global poultry business. At the time of his death in 2011, he was among the richest people in the world, with a personal net worth of $1 billion. Don Tyson was born on April 21, 1930, in Olathe, Kansas, to John Tyson, founder of Tyson Foods, Inc., and Mildred Ernst Tyson. His family resettled in northwest Arkansas in 1931, and Tyson grew up in Springdale (Washington County). He studied at Kemper Military School in Boonville, Missouri, …