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Entry Category: Dallas

Carthage (Dallas County)

Carthage is located in northern Dallas County, on Highways 48 and 229. Formed by the railroad and timber industries, it continues to support a working sawmill in the twenty-first century. According to a plaque erected in Carthage in 1976, the area was “a crossroad for settlers in pioneer times due to the abundance of wild game and water springs.” Large plantations grew cotton and other crops, and communities such as Tulip (Dallas County) and Princeton (Dallas County) built schools, churches, and businesses. As part of the Camden Expedition, the Engagement at Jenkins’ Ferry was fought a few miles north of the present location of Carthage in April 1864. The end of the Civil War meant the end of slavery in Arkansas, which changed the plantation …

Fordyce (Dallas County)

Located at the intersection of Highways 167 and 79 in south central Arkansas, Fordyce was established in 1882 and named for Colonel Samuel Wesley Fordyce, a railroad builder and developer. It has long been a center for the timber industry in southern Arkansas. Pre-European Exploration Prior to European settlement, present-day Fordyce was inhabited by ancestors of the Caddo. Although no historic Caddo communities existed there, artifacts of Native American life are occasionally found in the area. Louisiana Purchase through Reconstruction Fordyce was a relatively late bloomer in Dallas County as compared to centrally located Princeton (Dallas County), which was incorporated in 1849 and served as the first county seat, and Tulip (Dallas County), which was considered the cultural center of …

Sparkman (Dallas County)

Sparkman, a small second-class city, is located on State Highway 7 approximately twenty-six miles west/northwest of the Dallas County seat of Fordyce. Once a thriving lumber town, it is today chiefly a farming community perhaps best known for a 1920s and 1930s girls’ basketball team known as the Sparkman Sparklers. Present-day Sparkman is located about a quarter of a mile southwest of the original settlement, which local residents today refer to as Old Sparkman. Lemil Pete Sparkman, who established a lumber mill near the seventeen-mile trunk line Ultima Thule, Arkadelphia and Mississippi Railway, founded the settlement in 1892. On September 19, 1893, a post office was opened with Sparkman as the postmaster. By 1899, the town was home to about …