Counties, Cities, and Towns

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Entry Category: Counties, Cities, and Towns

Abbott (Scott County)

Abbott is an unincorporated community located in northern Scott County along Highway 71. Established in 1899 near the town of Mansfield (Scott and Sebastian counties), Abbott was likely named after certain members of the Abbott family who lived in the area during the late nineteenth century. The agricultural, mining, and natural gas industries have traditionally been important economic resources in Abbott and the surrounding area. Prior to European exploration, the area surrounding Abbott was a wilderness. Species of wildlife that no longer inhabit the area, such as elk and buffalo, were present throughout the region. Archaeological findings have provided evidence of early inhabitants dating to the Archaic, Woodland, and Mississippian periods. Additional evidence has indicated that the Caddo tribe had …

Adona (Perry County)

  Adona is a city located on Highway 10 in northern Perry County. It began as a railroad town, prospered due to the timber industry, and is sustained by tourism in the twenty-first century. Adona is sometimes humorously described as “the first city in Arkansas” because of its place in the alphabetical order of communities and because of its zip code (72001). Franklin Russell was the first owner of the land that became Adona, establishing a claim to the land in 1849. However, Russell never lived on this land, eventually selling it to John Howell, who became the first permanent resident. As a small community developed, residents named it Cypress Valley, since it was watered by Cypress Creek. A Methodist congregation began to …

Akron (Independence County)

Drivers heading south from Newark (Independence County) on Highway 122 will see an isolated cemetery marker at the dividing line between a wooded area and a farm field. The sign reads “Akron Cemetery” and marks the only remains of a once vibrant community. The community was at one time called Big Bottom for the rich and extensive bottom land on the north side of White River and the west side of Black River. The stage route from Batesville (Independence County) to Jacksonport (Jackson County) ran through Big Bottom/Akron. The Akron Cemetery was listed on the National Register of Historic Places on October 4, 2002. The oldest recorded grave in the cemetery is from 1829, making this perhaps the oldest cemetery …

Alco (Stone County)

Alco is an unincorporated community in Locust Grove Township on Highway 66 between Timbo (Stone County) and Leslie (Searcy County), about fourteen miles west of Mountain View (Stone County), the county seat. At the invitation of the Cherokee in 1817, Shawnee from the Ohio River Valley entered the Ozark Mountains and settled west of the White River on Crooked Creek, with their main settlement at Shawneetown, what is today Yellville (Marion County). The Cherokee may have expected the Shawnee to aid them against the Osage. Shawnee villages could also be found in the Livingston and Sylamore Creek valleys along the White River and along Bear Creek in Searcy County. The role played by the Shawnee Cornstalk family in Searcy County …

Alexander (Pulaski and Saline Counties)

The city of Alexander is located northeast of Benton (Saline County) on the line dividing Pulaski and Saline counties. It was a railroad construction camp before it incorporated on December 2, 1887. The first settlers, who came in 1878, were Jacob Ash and W. N. Slack. Within two months, seventy people had settled in the area, including German immigrants. The town had two stores, a drugstore, a sawmill, and a physician, and the people raised money for a church and a school. In 1884, Alexander had three churches: a Methodist church, a Baptist church, and a German Lutheran church. It now has four churches: two Baptist churches, Collegeville Church of the Nazarene, and Immanuel Lutheran Church. It also has a …

Alicia (Lawrence County)

Alicia is on the segment of U.S. Highway 67 that has been dubbed Rock ’n’ Roll Highway 67. In addition, the length from Alicia to Hoxie (Lawrence County) is one of five sections of the Old U.S. Highway 67 listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Built as a railroad stop, the town was once the southernmost passenger stop on the Iron Mountain railroad in Lawrence County. The Osage once hunted in northern Arkansas, although they lived farther north and left few archaeological remains in the area that would become Alicia. After treaties removed the Osage and other Native Americans from the area, the land was opened for settlement, but much of the land around Alicia remained unclaimed for many …

Allen Chapel (Independence County)

Allen Chapel is a small community in Independence County on Highway 14 between Ramsey Mountain and Salado (Independence County). Once located upon a spur called the Allen Chapel Road, it is now on the main road from the county seat of Batesville (Independence County) to Oil Trough (Independence County). Today, the Allen Chapel Free Will Baptist Church (and the associated cemetery) is the only landmark for the community. At one time, a country general store, the Dewey Lusk Grocery, was located near the church. In the early twenty-first century, the only remaining business is the Time Bandit, which sells electric cargo-strap winders. Several businesses, including  two banks and a motel, are located nearby on Ramsey Mountain. In 1827, at age …

Allport (Lonoke County)

Allport is a town on Highway 165 in southern Lonoke County located two miles west of Humnoke (Lonoke County). Allport is largely populated by African Americans, although Lonoke County’s population is nearly ninety percent white. Southern Lonoke County has rich alluvial soil that attracted cotton farmers who created large plantations operated with slave labor. When the Civil War ended the practice of slavery in Arkansas and other Southern states, many freed slaves became tenant farmers. Others were able to purchase land; African Americans often were sold the lower land, more prone to flooding, while white farmers retained possession of the higher agricultural land. An African-American community developed along Crooked Creek in southern Lonoke County; by 1878, the community had a …

Alma (Crawford County)

Alma has been Crawford County’s second-largest town since the town’s establishment around 1872. It is known nationally as the “Spinach Capital of the World” for its spinach-processing facility and has attracted national attention through the actions of outlaws Bonnie and Clyde and fundamentalist pastor Tony Alamo. Before Alma became a settlement, Armstead “Ira” Smoot bought the land from the government on August 3, 1836. It was used mainly as farmland until Colonel Mathias F. Locke bought it in 1872. Locke built his house and a cotton gin on ten acres next to W. W. Smith’s drugstore and Smoot’s cabin. J. D. James kept a livery stable and a stage stand. In 1870, Alex W. Griffin had the first store and …

Almond (Cleburne County)

Almond lies in the northeastern corner of Cleburne County. The community historically had close family and commercial ties to Concord and Banner in Cleburne County to the southwest and Locust Grove (Independence County) to the northeast. Almond was in Independence County until February 20, 1883, when the last county in Arkansas, Cleburne County, was created. Brock Mountain, towering over 1,200 feet, separates Almond from Independence County and its county seat, Batesville. The community of Almond in the twenty-first century is virtually a ghost town with one abandoned store building. It is not known for sure how Almond received its name, because almonds do not grow naturally in Arkansas. It is suspected that an Almond family lived in the area when …

Almyra (Arkansas County)

Located half-way between Stuttgart (Arkansas County) and DeWitt (Arkansas County) on state Highway 130, the town of Almyra has a history similar to its larger neighbors. Sparked by railroad construction and fueled by the farms of Arkansas County, Almyra has diminished in size but has maintained its identity as an eastern Arkansas community. When Arkansas was first settled, the Grand Prairie seemed untamable to cotton farmers who preferred the rich soils of the Delta region or new land claimed by clearing away the forests. Following the Civil War, though, newcomers to the state made their home on the Grand Prairie, and rice farming succeeded where other kinds of agriculture had seemed unpromising. The Stuttgart and Arkansas River Railroad (later part …

Alpena (Boone and Carroll Counties)

Alpena is a town located predominately in western Boone County, although the town has, since the 2000 census, recorded some of its population also living across the county line in Carroll County. Created by the railroad early in the twentieth century, Alpena is on U.S. Highway 62 and is home to about twenty small businesses. The area was originally part of Carroll County when white settlers began claiming land in the Ozark Mountains. The fertile land along Long Creek attracted John Boyd, who received a land grant in 1849. He was joined by William J. Estes in 1860 and Bailey Stone in 1861. As Carrollton (Carroll County), then the county seat, was only a few miles away, the residents could …

Alpine (Clark County)

Alpine, one of the oldest settlements in Clark County, is an unincorporated community located in the northwestern part of the county. The community is located twenty-two miles northwest of the county seat, Arkadelphia, and is best known as the childhood home of noted actor and director Billy Bob Thornton. William Glover and his family, the first settlers of the area, arrived in 1848 in what would become Alpine, followed by several other families. It is most commonly thought that the settlement received its name due to its location on the highest point of the county. However, several folktales also relay the origin of the name. The original settlement was located a mile east of the present community and comprised little …

Altheimer (Jefferson County)

Altheimer is a second-class city in Jefferson County, located roughly halfway between Pine Bluff (Jefferson County) and Stuttgart (Arkansas County). Founded as a railroad town and named for the Jewish family who encouraged the building of the railroad, it quickly became a center for the shipping of cotton, surpassing older cities in eastern Arkansas. Located in the Arkansas River Valley, the site of Altheimer was originally flood-prone forestland. Doctor Samuel Johnson Jones was the first resident of what would become Altheimer. He acquired and cleared 500 acres of timberland and moved to Arkansas from Mississippi in 1857, bringing his family and 150 slaves with him. His mansion, the Elms (which is now on the National Register of Historic Places), was …

Altus (Franklin County)

Altus (Franklin County) was incorporated on August 31, 1888. Railroad authorities had named their railhead Altus, from the Latin for “high,” because it was the highest point on the Little Rock and Fort Smith Railroad. The town is known today as the center of wine making in Arkansas. Louisiana Purchase through Early Statehood A Frenchman named Jean Baptiste Dardenne had a claim made on his behalf in June 1814 for 640 arpents (approximately 544.45 acres) in the area. In 1819, the U.S. government ordered the white settlers out of the area, giving the Cherokee exclusive title to the territory lying between the White and Arkansas rivers. However, a treaty in 1828 removed the Arkansas Cherokee to Indian Territory (present-day Oklahoma). …

Amagon (Jackson County)

Amagon is a town in southern Jackson County on Highway 14. It is best known as the birthplace of Mike Beebe, Arkansas’s forty-fifth governor. About 600 archaeological sites in Jackson County indicate that the land has been populated for around 10,000 years. However, the area around Amagon was only sparsely populated until the twentieth century. In 1900, Will Pennington owned the land where Amagon stands. He granted some land to the Bonnerville and Southwestern Railroad (also called at one time the Bonnerville and Southern), which was built in 1905 to link Bonnerville—now Bono (Craighead County)—to Estico (Jackson County). The line was later extended through Amagon to Algoa (Jackson County). The railroad, which soon became part of the St. Louis–San Francisco …

Amity (Clark County)

Amity traces its beginnings to the arrival of a group of pioneer families, under the leadership of Deacon William F. Browning, Clark County surveyor (1846–1850, 1852–1854), who settled along the old Caddo Cove Road just north of the Caddo River late in 1847. An abundance of water and rich bottomland drew them to the area. Soon after his arrival, Browning built a large two-story log house just west of Caney Creek. It soon became the center of an expanding community. According to Laura Scott, an early Clark County historian, Browning named his settlement “Amity” because he hoped to find in it “peace and brotherhood.” In August 1848, Browning and a group of local citizens formed what would become the Bethel …

Anderson (Scott County)

Located between Highway 80 and Highway 71 along Sweet Gum Lane, Anderson is an unincorporated community in central Scott County one mile northwest of Waldron (Scott County). The agricultural industry was vital to area settlers and later residents. The area’s first inhabitants included natives from the Archaic, Woodland, and Mississippian periods. Archaeological discoveries suggest that natives of the Caddo Nation made their homes along the Poteau River and other prominent waterways in the area. Thousands of archaeological sites can be found along the Fourche La Fave River and Poteau River valleys nearby. Throughout the late seventeenth and early eighteenth centuries, French hunters and tradesmen traveled west from Arkansas Post along the Arkansas River. From there, they began traversing smaller tributaries …

Anderson Flat (Marion County)

aka: Verona (Marion County)
Anderson Flat, also known as Verona, is a rural community in the southwestern corner of Marion County near the Searcy County line. In the twenty-first century, it sustains a small population and holds an annual homecoming Memorial Day event. The Anderson Flat community was established on prairie land with several flat acres in the mostly hilly Ozarks region. Native American artifacts have been located in area caves and along the lake or marsh that ran parallel to the property where the schoolhouse/church was later erected. In the late 1880s, public schools in rural Arkansas counties were scarce. As the population in the Anderson Flat area grew, the need for a house of worship and schoolhouse arose. In 1883, James Bosmon …

Anthonyville (Crittenden County)

Anthonyville is a town located on State Highway 147 in southern Crittenden County. The town has never had a post office, a school, or a railroad depot; it exists largely as a bedroom community for the greater Memphis, Tennessee, area. The population is largely African-American. The rich soil of Crittenden County, replenished by Mississippi River flooding, has long drawn people to the area. Ancient artifacts have been unearthed in the county as reminders of its long history of human habitation. Both Spain and France held ownership of the land for a time, and some Spanish settlers had already established plantations in the county before the Louisiana Purchase in 1803 made the land part of the United States. Afterward, American settlers …

Antoine (Pike County)

Antoine is located in the southeastern corner of Pike County on Highway 26, between Murfreesboro (Pike County) and Arkadelphia (Clark County). It was one of the first settlements in what is now Pike County. The town sits on a hill with an elevation of 300 feet above sea level. The Antoine River, which is thirty-five miles long, rises from multiple streams in the Ouachita Mountains and flows by Antoine, running into the Little Missouri River near Okolona (Clark County). Native Americans and French trappers operated on the land around Antoine during the 1700s. The town was reportedly named for one of the French trappers. He was found dead at his camp, near the road, and the only identification to be …

Arkadelphia (Clark County)

Serving as Clark County’s seat of government since 1842, Arkadelphia has served as a farm market and trading center thanks to reliable water-, then rail-, then automotive-borne transportation from its perch adjacent to the Ouachita River at the edge of the Ouachita Mountains. It has a history of light industry, covering the gamut from salt extraction to lumber and aluminum, as well as recreational opportunities afforded by the nearby Ouachita and Caddo rivers and the Caddo’s impoundment, DeGray Lake. Arkadelphia’s greatest asset has been an enduring commitment to education that began with general private and denominational efforts, as well as the Arkansas School for the Blind prior to the Civil War, and blossomed with public education, a business college, and …

Arkansas City (Desha County)

Arkansas City is a small town with a population of fewer than 400 people, as of the 2010 Census. Located in southeast Arkansas, it is nestled against a levee that protects it from the Mississippi River. However, before the Flood of 1927, Arkansas City was a major trade and cultural center and was one of the most important ports on the Mississippi River. European Exploration and Settlement At the time of the Marquette-Joliet Expedition, there were four Quapaw villages along the lower Arkansas River and the Mississippi River. Jacques Marquette and Louis Joliet spent two days in these villages around 1673. They were the first recorded Europeans in the area. In 1682, René-Robert Cavelier, Sieur de La Salle and Henri …

Arkansas County

Arkansas County, located in southeast Arkansas, has two county seats—DeWitt and Stuttgart. It is one of the state’s original counties and lies in the Delta. Arkansas County is an agricultural county; rice and soybeans are the main crops. European Exploration and Settlement Spanish explorer Hernando de Soto traveled the Mississippi River from 1541 to 1543. At one point, he and his party reached Anilco, a village on the Arkansas River that may have included the Menard-Hodges Site in the southeast corner of Arkansas County. On the same river were the villages of Cayas and Utiangue. In 1682, the La Salle expedition reached Kappa, the largest village of the Quapaw Indians; it stood on the west bank of the Mississippi River. …

Arkansas Post

Arkansas Post was the first and most significant European establishment in Arkansas. In the colonial and early national periods, from 1686 to 1821, it served as the local governmental, military, and trade headquarters for the French, the Spanish, and finally the United States. In return for serving in René-Robert Cavelier, Sieur de La Salle’s 1682 expedition, Henri de Tonti, a French officer born of Italian parents, received land and a trading concession at the juncture of the Arkansas and Mississippi rivers. In the summer of 1686, he arranged with the local Quapaw for Jean Couture, Jacques Cardinal, and four other Frenchmen to establish a trading post, where they would exchange French goods for beaver furs. They founded this first Arkansas Post …