Counties, Cities, and Towns

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Entry Category: Counties, Cities, and Towns - Starting with H

Hackett (Sebastian County)

Hackett is the second-oldest city in Sebastian County, and at one time it was also the second-largest city in the county. Located at the intersection of State Highways 10 and 45, Hackett is several miles south of Fort Smith (Sebastian County) and is near the state border with Oklahoma. Hackett is named for Jeremiah Hackett, who established a homestead in western Arkansas Territory in 1834. Hackett—who came from Pomeroy, Ohio—named the community he founded Hickory Grove. As one historian wrote, “It was Mr. Hackett’s custom and delight to give everyone a lot who would build a residence.” Among those who accepted the offer of free land was Ammi Baston Merrill, who came from Ohio with his father, brother, wife, and …

Hagler (Arkansas County)

The community of Hagler was likely not populated until after the Civil War, though the Hagler family, after whom the community was named, came to Arkansas in the late 1840s, settling throughout Arkansas County. By 1878, tax assessments list W. G. R. Hampton, William A. Crockett, Robert Hagler, and Jacob Hagler as living in the Hagler community. Deeds indicate that William Graves purchased much land around the Hagler community after the war; he established the first known store in the area. In 1888, a petition was circulated by Robert L. Hagler for a post office, and he became the first postmaster. The store established by Graves closed in the late 1880s, and its clerk, John Scott, bought eighty acres up …

Halfway (Clark County)

Halfway was a community in Clark County located about seven miles north of Okolona (Clark County) and seven miles northeast of Antoine (Pike County) on State Highway 26. The community was located roughly halfway between Antoine and Hollywood (Clark County). Halfway was never a large settlement, but records reflect the operation of a post office for several years. The office opened in 1884 and closed in 1886. It reopened in 1900 and remained in operation until it was permanently closed in 1916. The operations of the office were moved to Okolona.   Early settlers to the area farmed and worked in the timber industry. Samuel Dawson obtained the first land in the area with his patent filed on November 1, …

Hamburg (Ashley County)

As a small town, Hamburg is typical in the economic challenges facing it but is atypical in that it has become the educational center for most of Ashley County’s geographic area, as well as small parts of Chicot and Drew counties. Early Statehood through Reconstruction Hamburg was laid out in October 1849, two months after Ashley County was formed from part of Drew County in the area earlier known as the Great Wilderness. With the town’s designation as the county seat, two of the first public buildings were the courthouse and the county jail, erected in 1850. The site was chosen at least in part because the legislation organizing the county required that the county seat be within five miles …

Hampton (Calhoun County)

Hampton has served as the seat of Calhoun County since the county was created in 1850, and it remains the county’s most populous city. Louisiana Purchase through Early Statehood The first white person to patent a claim in the area of what is now Hampton was Nathaniel Hunt of Tennessee, who arrived in 1848. He established a farm on the north side of what was later the Hampton and Warren Road. When Calhoun County was created in 1850, a county seat was established near Hunt’s farm due to its central location and named Hampton for Colonel John R. Hampton, a state senator. Oliver Hazard Perry Black of Union County settled in Hampton around 1850, starting the first store there. In …

Hardy (Sharp County)

Located in northern Arkansas on the Spring River, Hardy (Sharp County) was established in 1883 as a result of the construction of the Kansas City, Springfield, and Memphis Railroad. The town emerged in the twentieth century as a popular tourist destination for Mid-southerners seeking the natural beauty of the Ozark foothills. The Arkansas General Assembly’s 1867 decision to pay companies $10,000 for every mile of track laid led to a statewide boom in railway construction. The Kansas City, Springfield, and Memphis Railroad through Arkansas was built, at least in part, because of this incentive. Named for railroad contractor James A. Hardy of Batesville (Independence County), the town was developed on 600 acres of land by early settler Walker Clayton in …

Harkey Valley (Yell County)

  Harkey Valley, often referred to as “Harkey’s Valley,” is a community located in Yell County between County Roads 38 and 39. Located southwest of Dardanelle (Yell County), the community is bordered by Chickalah (Yell County) on Highway 27, which lies approximately ten miles to the east, and the Mount Magazine Division of the Ozark National Forest to the west. Portions of the community are located within the forest itself. The community’s history is closely associated with the neighboring community of Sulphur Springs (Yell County), which lies slightly to the north. Both areas are often referred to as simply “the valley.” County Road 38, which leads from Chickalah to Harkey’s Valley and Sulphur Springs, was renamed “Harkey’s Valley Road.” Therefore, many …

Harmontown (Independence County)

Harmontown (a.k.a. Harmon Town) is a farming community in Washington Township, located on Harmontown Road between Bethesda (Independence County) and O’Neal (Independence County). Willow and Pine Tree lanes circle the community near Harmon and Betsey Gill creeks. Harmontown is in the White River bottoms about a mile north of the river. The White River bottoms are noted for floods, often severe. About ten miles west of the county seat of Batesville (Independence County), Harmontown is about two and a half miles from Bethesda and about three miles from O’Neal. The Harmon family from Tennessee founded the community. Stephen William (Step) Harmon and his wife, Sarah Mary Luster Harmon, along with four of their five sons (Moses, Peter, Trent, and Bill), …

Harrell (Calhoun County)

  Established as a railroad depot early in the twentieth century, the town of Harrell is in eastern Calhoun County, about five miles east of Hampton (Calhoun County), the county seat. Harrell still maintains a working sawmill in the twenty-first century. Calhoun County is part of the Gulf Coastal Plain. Caddo lived in these forested hills long before European exploration, and the county contains many reminders of their presence, including two prehistoric mounds and roughly 350 archaeological sites. European explorers entered the area by means of the Ouachita River, but more inland areas like what would become Harrell were not frequented until long after the county was created in 1850. After the Civil War, northern developers began to purchase land in southern Arkansas …

Harrisburg (Poinsett County)

  Situated upon Crowley’s Ridge, Harrisburg (Poinsett County) became the seat of Poinsett County in September 1856. Harrisburg is home to the Modern News, the oldest established weekly newspaper in Arkansas. It is situated on the Helena (Phillips County) branch of the St. Louis, Iron Mountain and Southern Railroad line. The town is named in honor of the Benjamin Harris family. The Harris family came to the Harrisburg area from Alabama before 1830. Benjamin Harris married Martha Thrower, a Kentucky native, and they had eleven children. This pioneer settler of the county was prominent in both local and state affairs, serving as magistrate, representative, and senator. Harrisburg was also the home of Benjamin Harris’s son, County Judge William Harris, who …

Harrison (Boone County)

Located in the Ozark Mountains of north Arkansas, Harrison is a hub of regional tourism and industry. The town struggles, however, to overcome the national attention focused on it due to racial conflicts in the early 1900s and the reappearance of the Knights of the Ku Klux Klan in the 1990s. Louisiana Purchase through Early Statehood Before white settlers arrived to settle the area that would become Harrison, the Osage called the area home. The Cherokee arrived during the Trail of Tears. The Benge Route was north of the present city of Harrison. With the arrival of white settlers by the 1830s, the Osage and Cherokee were forced out of the area. Named after the creek that continues to run …

Hartford (Sebastian County)

  The city of Hartford, in southern Sebastian County, is most famous for its role in the history of gospel music publishing. A city that flourished during the peak of coal mining in western Arkansas early in the twentieth century, Hartford has diminished in population but remains an anchor of the region. The history of Hartford is actually an account of two communities. The older settlement to take the name Hartford dates to before the Civil War. About seventeen families were homesteading in southern Sebastian County, between the Sugar Loaf and Poteau mountains. Their settlement was known to some residents as the Old Sugarloaf Valley Community, but most called the settlement Hart’s Ford, honoring Betsy Hart, the widow of James Hart, who …

Hartman (Johnson County)

  The city of Hartman, eleven miles west of Clarksville (Johnson County) on U.S. Highway 64, was settled by German immigrants in the 1880s after railroad service was established. A center of cotton and peach farming, as well as coal production, the city prospered until the Great Depression but has struggled since that time. The first owner of the land on which Hartman was built was Oren Davis Hogins, who purchased several tracts of Johnson County land beginning in 1837. Other settlers also bought land in the area and established farms that grew cotton and various fruits and vegetables, as well as raising livestock. When the Civil War began, many of the men from the area enlisted with the Confederate …

Harvey (Scott County)

Harvey is an unincorporated community in eastern Scott County, near the border of Yell County. Harvey is within close proximity to the community of Nola (Scott County), just two miles east along Highway 28. The area where Harvey and Nola are located was once known as Nebraska (Scott County). The area along the Fourche La Fave River valley was once a wilderness thick with timber and wildlife. Archaeological evidence shows Archaic, Woodland, and Mississippian peoples living in the area. Prior to European exploration of Arkansas, the Caddo tribe lived along the Fourche La Fave River valley, and burial mounds and other archaeological sites can be found along the river. In the late seventeenth and early eighteenth centuries, French hunters and …

Haskell (Saline County)

  Haskell is a city on Highway 67 in Saline County, about seven miles south of the county seat of Benton. Once recognized as a railroad town, located between the Missouri Pacific and the Rock Island tracks, Haskell is best known in the twenty-first century as the home of the Harmony Grove School District. Southern Saline County, watered by creeks that flow into the Saline River, was a rugged wooded area when Arkansas became a state in 1836. One of the first to receive a land grant for the area that would become Haskell was Mabel Gilbert, who received land grants dated 1837 and 1838. Other early settlers included Thomas Montgomery and William Washington White. Following the Civil War, railroads began …

Hatfield (Polk County)

Hatfield is a town on U.S. Highway 71 in Polk County. Although it originated earlier than the Civil War, its survival is due to the railroad, now the Kansas City Southern, that was built at the end of the nineteenth century. White settlers from Georgia, Virginia, Tennessee, Missouri, and Kentucky first began to arrive in the vicinity of Hatfield in the 1840s. Thomas Adams, Edward Read, and Berry Ward each received patents from the land office in 1855. A sawmill was built near the location where the Old Line Road crossed Six Mile Creek, and a community called Clayton Spur developed. The community had a blacksmith shop, a lodge hall, and several shops connected with the lumber industry. No schools …

Havana (Yell County)

Havana is a second-class city located on Highway 10 between the Ozark National Forest to the north and the Ouachita National Forest to the south. Highway 309 winds north from Havana to Mount Magazine, and Blue Mountain Lake on the Petit Jean River is a few miles west of Havana. The small city is the birthplace and childhood home of three major league pitchers, the most renowned of whom is Johnny Sain. Before Havana was incorporated in 1900, several names were given to the small settlement that was developing on the north side of the Petit Jean River. Marvinville was the earliest name given to the settlement, which was a stopping-point on the Military Road which connected Dardanelle (Yell County) …

Haynes (Lee County)

  Haynes is a town in north-central Lee County, about one mile from the St. Francis County line and two miles from the L’Anguille River. Cotton and the railroad brought Haynes into existence, but the town’s population has varied over the years. Before Arkansas became a state, its eastern Delta region was dotted with large cotton plantations, with a slave population that largely outnumbered the white landowners. Several homes were built in the area that would become Haynes from the 1820s to the 1840s. Stores, a Baptist church, and a school for white children had already been established by 1850. The Civil War changed the economy of the region, bringing an end to slavery, but the African-American tenant farmers of the area lived much the same lives …

Hazel Grove (Independence County)

The historic community of Hazel Grove is in Dota Township on Walden Road about four miles north-northeast of Cord (Independence County). It was once located on a main thoroughfare built in the early 1830s, the Military Road, which paralleled the Southwest Trail. Curia Creek is nearby, and the Black River lies a few miles to the east. Batesville, the county seat, is sixteen miles to the west-southwest. Hazel Grove is just south of the point at which Independence, Lawrence, and Sharp counties meet. The French LaBass family played a leading role in establishing Hazel Grove. The deed records at Powhatan (Lawrence County) show that five French settlers claimed lands along the Black River: Joseph Janis, son of Anthony Janis; John …

Hazen (Prairie County)

Hazen is located near the center of Prairie County, approximately forty-three miles directly east of Little Rock (Pulaski County) on Highway 70 and Interstate 40. It is in the northern part of the Grand Prairie, land once thought good only for growing prairie hay and wild animals. Louisiana Purchase through Early StatehoodThe town is named for Dr. William Cogswell Hazen, who came to the area from Covington, Tennessee, with his family and twenty-one slaves in 1854. He settled in a spot 1.3 miles north of present-day Highway 70 and one mile west of Highway 63, in a place where the prairie ends. Hazen persuaded family friend the Reverend John W. Hudson to come with them. Hudson settled three miles west …

Heber Springs (Cleburne County)

Heber Springs, the county seat of Arkansas’s youngest county, has been identified as a tourist area from the beginning. Even before the town was formed, the area was known for its mineral springs. Since the formation of Greers Ferry Lake on the Little Red River in the early 1960s, the town has become a popular resort for camping, boating, and other water sports. Pre-European Exploration At least 10,000 years ago, people hunted and foraged in the land that would become Cleburne County. At some point nearly 2,000 years ago, they began to domesticate plants, including corn and squash, and around 1,000 years ago they established settled communities with substantial houses, especially in the river valleys. Over 200 archaeological sites are known …

Hedges (Stone County)

Hedges is a historic community located on Gunner Pool Road (Highway 93) about a mile northeast of Fifty-Six (Stone County) and about two miles north-northeast of the recreational area known as Gunner’s Pool, a popular camping, swimming, and fishing site in Stone County. This area is part of the Ozark National Forest. Native Americans hunted and fished in the Hedges area at least 1,000 years ago, as evidenced by a skeleton discovered in 1955 during the first systematic exploration of the caverns by cavers. The skeleton had a fractured skull, fractured ribs, and a fractured leg. How this explorer entered the cave is unknown. Radiocarbon dating of the remains of a cane and wooden torch indicates that prehistoric human exploration …

Helena-West Helena (Phillips County)

Helena-West Helena is located on the Mississippi River about seven and a half miles below the mouth of the St. Francis River. Helena was incorporated in 1833 and prospered as a river port, while West Helena began as a railroad town, incorporated in 1917. The two cities united their school systems in 1946 and merged into one city (preserving both names) on January 1, 2006. Louisiana Purchase through Early Statehood Two land speculators, Sylvanus Phillips and William Russell, created the present town site of Helena, which was originally part of a Spanish land grant. Phillips, who played the major role in the establishment of the town, arrived in the area about 1797 and moved to the present site of Helena …

Hempstead County

  Hempstead County, located in the southwest corner of the state, was organized in 1818, before Congress established Arkansas Territory. The Missouri territorial legislature had created three counties from Arkansas County—Hempstead, Clark, and Pulaski. The county was named for Edward Hempstead, the first delegate to Congress from Missouri Territory. It has been the home of four Arkansas governors: Augustus H. Garland, Daniel Webster Jones, William Jefferson Clinton (later a U.S. president), and Michael Dale Huckabee. European Exploration and Settlement Early Spanish and French explorers traded with the Indians, and it is possible that Hernando de Soto’s 1539–1542 expedition visited this area. Archaeologists have found evidence of Caddo Indian villages and mounds. The Caddo were known to hunt along the Red …

Hensley (Pulaski County)

Hensley is an unincorporated community in southern Pulaski County. Highway 365 runs through Hensley, connecting with Interstate 530 at the southern edge of the community. The origins of Hensley begin with William and Harriet Campbell, who came to Arkansas Territory from Indiana in 1835. Planning at first to live in Hot Springs (Garland County), they instead acquired land in southern Pulaski County and northern Jefferson County. Their first home was in White Bluff (Jefferson County) on the Arkansas River, but Campbell—with his business partner John Pennington—bought 320 acres of land and built a sawmill on Campbell Bayou in Pulaski County. He then harvested cypress, oak, and pine trees from his property, hauling the timber three miles to the Arkansas River …

Hermitage (Bradley County)

Built on what was once the farm of Wiley Powell and then Jefferson Singer, the city of Hermitage is located on a small ridge near the geographic center of Bradley County. Until the Rock Island Railroad was built across the county, the area was sparsely settled, although a post office named Hermitage existed at this location before the Civil War. The Bradley County tomato industry and the poultry industry are both major components of the Hermitage economy. Around 1849, Wiley and Louisa Powell moved to Bradley County, taking title to the land that is now Hermitage the next year. Louisa’s parents, James and Susan Thompson, joined the Powells that year, as did Robert Pulley (who served as the pastor of Holly …

Hickman (Mississippi County)

Hickman is an unincorporated community in northeastern Mississippi County, near the Mississippi River. It is the easternmost community in the state of Arkansas. In the twenty-first century, Hickman is more of an industrial park than a residential community. Native Americans traveling on the Mississippi River undoubtedly stopped at the future site of Hickman, and some groups may have lived in the area for a time. The first Europeans to see the location were the members of the Marquette-Joliet expedition in 1673. The United States first gained possession of the land through the Louisiana Purchase in 1803. The river landing was frequently used during territorial times, and a post office named Buford Landing was established there in 1836, the year Arkansas …

Hickory Ridge (Cross County)

  Like much of northeast Arkansas, Cross County was relatively undeveloped in the years following the Civil War. Brushy Lake Township, which included the future Hickory Ridge, registered only 313 people in the 1870 Census. According to the authors of 35º24′ North – 91º West: A Town Called Hickory Ridge, “cotton farming had not yet reached the Western side of Crowley’s Ridge….The Western part of the county was much too wet and subject to flooding, at the time, for the long growing season of cotton.” The founding of Hickory Ridge is often dated to the opening of the area’s post office, which took that name, on October 5, 1875. The 1880 population of the township increased to 342. The following …

Hickory Valley (Independence County)

Hickory Valley is an unincorporated community in Barren Township in Independence County. The historic Hickory Valley Methodist Church stood across Highway 167 North from the Hickory Valley Cemetery, once called the Brewer Cemetery; the old building, in a state of disrepair, burned in June 2016. Hickory Valley is three miles south of Cave City (Sharp and Independence counties) and ten miles north-northeast of Batesville (Independence County). John W. Meacham, born in North Carolina, brought his wife and family from the Cumberland River country of Tennessee to the sparsely settled area he named Hickory Valley around 1827, building a log cabin in the woods. He operated a trading post by his cabin. His youngest son, Thornberry Anderson Meacham, born in 1831, …

Higden (Cleburne County)

Higden is a town in the northwestern corner of Cleburne County, located along Highway 16. It sits at the west end of the Higden Bridge, which spans a segment of Greers Ferry Lake and serves to connect Higden with the larger town of Greers Ferry (Cleburne County). Prior to the nineteenth century, the only inhabitants of the land that would become Cleburne County were Native Americans. The Osage controlled the area and used it primarily as a hunting ground. In 1808, the United States purchased the area from the Osage, and European Americans began settling in the area. In 1817, the United States established a treaty with the Cherokee, giving the Cherokee all the land between the White River and …

Higginson (White County)

  Born as a railroad depot, Higginson is a second-class city in White County, a few miles south of Searcy (White County). Searcy was created as the county seat because of its central location in White County, but before the Civil War, most residents of the county lived in the northwestern half, as southern White County was still dominated by swampland. Although the Military Road ran through the location that would become Higginson, no settlement is reported there prior to construction of the railroad. The Cairo and Fulton Railroad was incorporated in Arkansas in 1853, with a plan to link southern Illinois with Texas for freight and passenger service. The Civil War delayed construction, and tracks were not laid across White County …

Highfill (Benton County)

Highfill is a town in Benton County that has been shaped by the area’s changing transportation needs. It emerged due to railroad construction in the early twentieth century and is now home to the Northwest Arkansas Regional Airport. Jason Woodward and Silas Gorden acquired land shortly before the Civil War in the area that would become Highfill. The town was named for Hezekiah Highfill, a Civil War veteran who bought land near Woodward’s and Gorden’s tracts of land in 1885. All three families established apple orchards on their land. A community called Hoover—reportedly named for Stanford University student Herbert Hoover, the future U.S. president, who surveyed the area in the early 1890s—existed a mile or two south of Highfill’s orchard. …