Entries - Entry Category: Historic Preservation - 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 …

Caddo Indian Memorial

The Caddo Indian Memorial is located on the site of a Native-American burial ground on the outskirts of Norman (Montgomery County) on Arkansas Highway 8 East. Open year round and free to the public, it contains the Elmo Clark Honor Path, which runs a quarter of a mile along the perimeter. This allows visitors easy access to the twenty-one signs that explain the culture and history of the Caddo Indians. The path runs parallel to the Caddo River and its tributary, Huddleston Creek, which form the southwestern and northwestern boundaries. In October 1988, the city of Norman had begun excavation at this site for construction of a sewage treatment plant, but digging was stopped abruptly when bones and artifacts were …

Caddo Valley Academy

Caddo Valley Academy (CVA) was founded in Womble (Montgomery County) in 1921. Though the private school was open for a relatively short amount of time, it had a lasting impact on the residents of Womble, which was later known as Norman. Through a blended curriculum of standard academics and biblical teachings, CVA provided a strong educational foundation for its students. Dr. John Tilman Barr Jr. established CVA. Barr was born in 1886 and devoted much of his life to working with children. Though he was frequently ill, Barr originally aspired to be a lawyer and politician. However, he came to believe that God had instructed him to become a minister and so devoted his life to the Presbyterian Church. Barr’s …

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 …

Calico Rock Home Economics Building

The Calico Rock Home Economics Building, located on Second Street in Calico Rock (Izard County), was built in 1940–1941 with assistance from the National Youth Administration (NYA), a Depression-era federal relief agency. It was listed on the National Register of Historic Places on September 10, 1992. Students in the White River town of Calico Rock were being served by a two-story school building erected in 1921 and a later gymnasium when President Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s New Deal created opportunities for an additional building. The school district turned to the NYA, which provided employment opportunities for young people, to build a home economics building on the school campus. Though the NYA approved the project around 1938, construction was delayed. The Calico …

Calico Rock Methodist Episcopal Church

aka: Calico Rock Music Hall
The Calico Rock Methodist Episcopal Church, located in Calico Rock (Izard County), was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 2007, the same year it was reopened as the Calico Rock Music Hall. The building’s Craftsman style and tan and dark red bricks are unusual in the Ozark Mountains. In the sanctuary, the original banked pews, pine floors, triple tray pressed-tin ceiling, and stained glass windows are still in place, as well as the 500-pound bell in the tower. Each of the five classrooms on the first floor has several six-foot-long double-hung windows. When the St. Louis and Iron Mountain Railroad began laying tracks along the banks of the White River in 1903, Calico Rock became a boom …

Calico Rock Museum and Visitor Center

The Calico Rock Museum and Visitor Center, which was formally dedicated on April 12, 2014, occupies two of the oldest surviving buildings in downtown Calico Rock (Izard County): the E. N. Rand Building (built in 1903) and the Bluff City Bank Building (built in 1896). The museum foundation also owns the 1906 Calico Rock Progress Building, which houses a café and ice cream parlor. While the museum preserves and displays the art and history of the community, it also has a contract with the City of Calico Rock to provide visitor center services. In 2007, a group of interested citizens formed the Calico Rock Organization for Revitalization Efforts (CORE) and began searching for a location to establish a museum to …

Camden Confederate Monument

The Camden Confederate Monument is a commemorative sculpture erected in 1915 on the grounds of the Ouachita County Courthouse in Camden (Ouachita County) through the efforts of the Hugh McCollum Camp 778 of the United Confederate Veterans (UCV), aided by the Hiram L. Grinstead Chapter of the United Daughters of the Confederacy (UDC), to honor women who had supported the Confederacy during the Civil War. The Camden Confederate Monument is one of two Arkansas memorials that honor the women who supported the Confederate cause, and as with the Monument to Confederate Women on the Arkansas State Capitol grounds, it was raised through the efforts of the United Confederate Veterans. Sufficient money was raised by the McCollum Camp, with help from …

Camden to Washington Road, Rosston Segment

The Camden to Washington Road formerly connected the towns of Camden (Ouachita County) and Washington (Hempstead County). Some sections of the road still exist in the twenty-first century, including a segment near Rosston (Nevada County) that is part of Nevada County Road 10. This portion of the road was added to the National Register of Historic Places on January 29, 2009. The first effort to create the road began in 1821 when residents of Hempstead County petitioned the Court of Common Pleas to construct a road linking their county with a point on the Ouachita River. This would allow farmers to transport their crops to the nearest navigable river. A map drawn that same year shows a road leaving Ecore …

Camden Water Battery

The Camden Water Battery was part of a system of Civil War fortifications that Confederate soldiers built in late 1864 to protect the city of Camden (Ouachita County) and block any Union movements toward Shreveport, Louisiana. In mid-September 1864, Major General Sterling Price led a force of 12,000 Confederate men—including most of the cavalry serving in the state—on a raid into Missouri, which left only a few infantry divisions around Washington (Hempstead County) to defend southern Arkansas. Those troops were under the command of Major General John Bankhead “Prince John” Magruder, who faced the challenge of defending southwestern Arkansas as aggressive Federal patrols probed the region in the absence of Price and the Confederate cavalry. Magruder’s ability to defend the …

Camp Monticello

Camp Monticello was a World War II prisoner-of-war (POW) camp south of Monticello (Drew County). The camp was built in the southeastern part of the state because that area offered the required rural, isolated location. Advocacy by local civic leaders like Congressman William F. Norrell and the need for labor in the agricultural and timber industries also influenced the site choice. The camp, which housed Italian POWs, was one of four main camps and thirty branch camps in Arkansas that interned Axis prisoners. The 1929 Geneva Convention regulated many of the conditions within POW camps. POWs were to be treated the same as the troops of the retaining power. Therefore, Camp Monticello was built to the standards of American military …

Camp Nelson Confederate Cemetery

Camp Nelson Confederate Cemetery, located approximately four miles southeast of Cabot (Lonoke County), is the site of a mass grave with as many as 1,500 soldiers who died of various diseases. It is one of a small number of all-Confederate cemeteries in Arkansas. In 1862, thousands of Confederate soldiers from Texas and Arkansas began to gather near the settlement of Austin (Lonoke County), about thirty miles northeast of Little Rock (Pulaski County). Perhaps as many as 20,000 soldiers camped in the area named Camp Hope. Life in camp was routine, with the exception of a mutiny in the summer of 1862 by a number of soldiers whose enlistment had expired. After the initial group deserted—disgruntled about the lack of pay—nine …

Camp Ouachita National Historic District

Camp Ouachita was the hearthstone for outdoor- and social-skills development and a path through adolescence for two generations of Arkansas Girl Scouts who seasonally camped there between 1937 and 1979. The Works Progress Administration (WPA), a federal New Deal agency, constructed Camp Ouachita from 1936 to 1940 for the Little Rock Area Girl Scout Council (LRGSC) in the Ouachita National Forest, twelve miles south of Perryville (Perry County) and some thirty-six miles west of Little Rock (Pulaski County). Camp Ouachita, the nation’s only surviving WPA-constructed Girl Scout camp complex, is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The camp is currently undergoing renovation. Prior to Camp Ouachita, the LRGSC had only limited, seasonal use of the Boy Scouts’ Camp …

Camp White Sulphur Springs Confederate Cemetery

Camp White Sulphur Springs, located in the community of Sulphur Springs (Jefferson County) two miles southwest of present-day Pine Bluff (Jefferson County), served as a staging and training facility for the Confederate army during the early parts of the Civil War. Later in the war, the camp and surrounding area functioned as a Confederate military hospital following a smallpox outbreak. In the early stages of the war, Camp White Sulphur Springs served as a recruiting and staging area for volunteers who came from Pine Bluff and the surrounding towns to organize and assign troops to various units. Early in the war, the Ninth Arkansas Volunteer Infantry Regiment and Fagan’s Guard, which later became B Company of the Second Arkansas Infantry …

Campbell Cemetery

The Campbell Cemetery is located in Randolph County on the north side of the Spring River near Imboden (Lawrence County). It is the only surviving historic resource that is associated with Lawrence County’s first county judge, James Campbell. While it is not known exactly when the cemetery was established, it is believed to have existed by around 1835. Lawrence County, the second of five counties created out of land that would become the Arkansas Territory in 1819, was established in 1815. At the time, the area was part of the Missouri Territory. While the offices of clerk, sheriff, and coroner were created in 1819, the office of county judge was not created until 1829. By that time, the county government …

Capitol-Main Historic District

Listed on the National Register of Historic Places on April 2, 2012, the Capitol-Main Historic District in downtown Little Rock (Pulaski County) was the commercial core of the city in the early to mid-twentieth century. The district encompasses the 500 block of Main Street, the 100–200 blocks of West Capitol Avenue, the 500 block of Center Street, and the 100–200 blocks of West 6th Street. Following its decline in the latter half of the twentieth century, it has been the focus of revitalization projects to resuscitate the once thriving district. The prime location of what became the Capitol-Main Historic District was responsible for its success. Little Rock became the capital of the Arkansas Territory in 1821, a few years after …

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 …

Carden Bottom

Carden Bottom (also known as Carden’s Bottom or Carden Bottoms) is a rich alluvial flood plain in northeastern Yell County created by the Arkansas River and internationally known for its rich archaeological heritage. Named for the James Carden family who settled there in the early 1800s, it is bounded by the Petit Jean River and Petit Jean Mountain, Holla Bend National Wildlife Refuge, and the Arkansas River. The area’s farmers produce large crops of sorghum, soybeans, corn, winter wheat, and hay. Archaeological investigations from the early 1990s indicate that some of these acres were also farmed from 500 to 1,500 years ago by Native Americans (Woodland through Mississippian cultures). A foraging lifeway extended as far back as 11,500 years ago …

Carolina Methodist Church

The Carolina Methodist Church is located near Rosston (Nevada County). Constructed in 1871, the building and associated cemetery are the last remnants of the Carolina community. The church was added to the National Register of Historic Places on January 3, 1991. The first settlers to the area began arriving around 1855, when the land was part of Ouachita County. Some evidence suggests that the church congregation was founded the following year. The land where the church would be built was purchased by the board of trustees for twenty-five cents on January 15, 1870, from the John W. Shell and W. C. Hatley families. The church building was likely constructed by the following year, and the property records were transferred to …

Carroll County Historical and Genealogical Society

On September 6, 1955, a group of citizens consisting of Alice Baker Gentry, Ruth Trimble, Lois Stubbs, Cora Pinkley Call, Frances McClelland, Coy Logan, Boyd W. Johnson, and Edwin L. Chaplin met in the Methodist church in Berryville (Carroll County) with Dr. Ted Worley, executive secretary of the Arkansas History Commission (now called the Arkansas State Archives). The purpose of this meeting was to make plans for organizing a historical society in Carroll County. During this meeting, Worley discussed the early history of Carroll County, the importance of preserving early records of the county, and how other county historical societies had been organized and managed. The next meeting was set for September 29, 1955, at the county library for the …

Carrollton Road

The Carrollton Road was part of an east-west road that crossed northern Arkansas in the 1830s and is noteworthy as one of the few documented roads used by the John Benge Detachment of Cherokee during the Indian Removal of the late 1830s. A segment of the road survives today. The Cherokee Removal detachment led by Captain John Benge initially consisted of 1,079 people and seventy wagons, though others would join the group as it headed west. The detachment departed from Fort Payne, Alabama, in late September and early October 1838. It crossed into Tennessee and later crossed the Mississippi River at Iron Banks in Kentucky. Traveling west and southwest through Missouri on the Military Road, the detachment crossed into Arkansas …

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 …

Castleberry-Harrington Historic District

The Castleberry-Harrington Historic District in Republican (Faulkner County) consists of three Mixed-Masonry houses, all rocked by mason Silas Owens Sr. of Twin Groves (Faulkner County). The district, which was placed on the National Register of Historic Places on June 5, 2007, contains the Loyd and Willie Castleberry Cottage, the Hinkle and Ermon Castleberry House, and the Wilbur and Mary Harrington House. It is an example of a rural farm family compound featuring rockwork by Owens. The homes were built using local sandstone for economy and exhibit the typical low, Craftsman styling of rural post–World War II houses in Arkansas. Owens was a rock mason who was well known in central Arkansas for his meticulous coursing method and his work ethic. …

Cathedral of St. Andrew

aka: St. Andrew's Catholic Cathedral
The Cathedral of St. Andrew is the oldest continuing place of worship in Little Rock (Pulaski County). It was dedicated in 1881 by Bishop Edward Fitzgerald, the second bishop of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Little Rock. Built in Gothic Revival style, the Cathedral of St. Andrew is made of rusticated granite mined from the Fourche Mountains, the northern section of the Ouachita Mountains. The structure, which was designed by architect Thomas Harding, is located at 617 South Louisiana Street, between 6th and 7th streets. Seating a maximum of 450, it is a comparatively small Catholic cathedral. The bell tower contains a 3,400-pound bell, the heaviest in Pulaski County. The bell tower stands 231 feet tall and was completed in …

CCC Company 3767 Powder Magazine Historic District

The CCC Company 3767 Powder Magazine Historic District, located near Jessieville in Garland County, consists of two small stone and concrete structures originally constructed to store powder and blasting caps for use by the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC). It was listed on the National Register of Historic Places on March 30, 2007. Civilian Conservation Corps Company 3767 was established on June 1, 1935, in Warrensburg, Missouri, and moved to Jessieville on July 8, 1935. The company built the powder magazine and blasting cap magazine to store explosives for use on road and bridge construction or conservation projects within the Ouachita National Forest. Company 3767 was transferred to Camp Hollis in Perry County in December 1936. The powder magazine is the …

CCC Company 741 Powder Magazine Historic District

The CCC Company 741 Powder Magazine Historic District, located near Norman (Montgomery County), consists of two small stone and concrete structures originally constructed to store powder and blasting caps for use by the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) while working on projects in the Ouachita National Forest. The CCC was established in 1933 as part of a New Deal effort to provide jobs while accomplishing important natural resource conservation projects during the Great Depression. There were 106 CCC camps established in Arkansas. Civilian Conservation Corps Company 741, the oldest CCC company in the Arkansas District, was formed on May 1, 1933, at Camp Pike and moved to Crystal Springs Camp on May 17, 1933. Four side camps were established from the …

CCC Company 749 Powder Magazine

The CCC Company 749 Powder Magazine is located north of Forest Service Road 4128 and south of Briggsville in Yell County. Company 749 of the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) built the structure around 1933 to store explosives (powder or blasting caps) for its work in the rugged forests of the area. The CCC Company 749 Powder Magazine is a small stone and concrete structure originally constructed for use by the Civilian Conservation Corps working in the Ouachita National Forest. The square building measures six feet on each side. It is five feet high with a four-inch-thick concrete top and a concrete floor. The cut-stone and concrete walls vary from six to eleven inches in thickness. Civilian Conservation Corps Company 749 …

Cedar Grove Cemetery (Johnson County)

aka: Mason Cemetery
aka: Darnell Cemetery
The Cedar Grove Cemetery near Clarksville (Johnson County), not to be confused with cemeteries of the same name in Boone and Scott counties, was used by the initial settlers of the area and is located between the Interior Highlands of the Boston Mountains and the Arkansas River Valley of Arkansas. The cemetery is currently covered with overgrowth of vegetation. The graves have recessed, and many of the headstones have been toppled. Also, there are small trees and shrubs growing throughout the area both near and over marked gravesites. According to tradition, early white settlers founded the cemetery. Unevenly cut headstones carved from local sandstone were used as grave markers, although some no longer have readable markings. It is unknown what …

Cedar Grove School No. 81

Located five miles north of Pocahontas (Randolph County) in the Brockett community is the Cedar Grove School No. 81. The school opened after a redistricting of Randolph County school districts in 1890 and offered classes through the eighth grade. The original school building served the local community until it was destroyed by a tornado on March 30, 1938. The building that replaced it held classes until the school district consolidated with the Pocahontas School District in 1949. After consolidation, the building served for a time as a meeting place for the Brockett Home Extension Club and as a community building. Cedar Grove School No. 81 is a Greek Revival–style building with the original well house and outhouse. The well house …

Centennial Baptist Church

The 1905 Gothic Revival Centennial Baptist Church, located at York and Columbia streets in Helena-West Helena (Phillips County), was listed as a National Historic Landmark on July 31, 2003. The building serves as a physical symbol of the work of the Reverend Elias Camp Morris. Morris dedicated his life to furthering the religious, political, and societal achievements of African Americans locally and nationally through his work as president and founder of the National Baptist Convention. Centennial Baptist is the only remaining structure associated with the productive life of Morris, who was pastor of the congregation in an earlier building on the site in 1879 and continued serving at the 1905 Centennial Baptist Church until his death in 1922. Morris’s outreach …

Centennial History of Arkansas

Dallas Tabor Herndon’s three-volume Centennial History of Arkansas (1922) was created in the early days of the Arkansas History Commission (AHC), now the Arkansas State Archives. Herndon, the AHC’s first director, wrote that “the state had no history that could be relied upon as authentic,” and he saw a need for a more “comprehensive state history” to aid him in his work with researchers at the AHC. Herndon believed that his history would be more reliable and accessible than any other before it, such as Little Rock (Pulaski County) native Fay Hempstead’s multi-volume Historical Review of Arkansas, published in 1911, when Herndon first began work at the AHC. Unlike Hempstead, Herndon was not from Arkansas, and thus he believed his …

Central Arkansas Library System

The Central Arkansas Library System (CALS) is the largest library system in Arkansas. Created in 1975, the system includes fourteen libraries located in Pulaski and Perry counties. The first public library to open in central Arkansas was the Little Rock Public Library in 1910. Earlier efforts to create libraries in the city included the library of the Little Rock Debating Society in the 1830s and newspaper publisher William Woodruff’s circulating library in the 1840s. After the Civil War, the Mercantile Library opened in the city and was available to professional men. After a merger with the Marquand Library, created for use by employees of the St. Louis and Iron Mountain Railroad, the library was acquired by the Young Men’s Christian …

Central Delta Depot Museum

The Central Delta Depot Museum in Brinkley (Monroe County) is an initiative of the Central Delta Historical Society, which was organized in the 1990s to preserve the history and heritage of the central Delta area. The museum’s scope covers all of Monroe and parts of Woodruff, St. Francis, Prairie, Lee, Phillips, and Arkansas counties. Louise Mitchell, a Kingsland (Cleveland County) native who had taught at Brinkley High School, served as the first president of the Central Delta Historical Society and editor of its journal from 1997 to 2001. In 1999, she led a letter-writing campaign—directed to Union Pacific officials, President Bill Clinton, the area’s congressmen, and others—to save Brinkley’s Union Train Station from destruction so a museum could be established. …

Central High School Neighborhood Historic District

Made nationally famous during the 1957 desegregation crisis, Central High School in Little Rock (Pulaski County) is surrounded by a historic neighborhood district that also bears its name. Central High is both an active high school and a museum protected under the National Park Service as a National Historic Landmark. The surrounding historical district is primarily made up of residential structures and is divided by Wright Avenue, a road historically used by trolleys. Residences in this neighborhood display primarily the Craftsman Bungalow, Tudor Revival, and Colonial Revival styles. The original district—roughly bounded by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Drive on the east, Thayer Avenue on the west, West 12th Street on the north, and Roosevelt Road on the south—was added …

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 …

Cherry Street Historic District

The Cherry Street Historic District is an area in downtown Helena-West Helena (Phillips County) that was added to the National Register of Historic Places on August 17, 1987. Helena—as it was known before its 2006 merger with West Helena (Phillips County)—was incorporated in 1833 and became a thriving river port along the Mississippi River. With a unique location along Crowley’s Ridge and the river, the city became an important transportation hub for nearby agricultural enterprises. Railroad access arrived in the late nineteenth century, making the city even more important for farmers wishing to connect to distant markets. As one of the most prosperous towns in eastern Arkansas, Helena attracted major investments. A flood in 1867 destroyed many of the businesses …

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 …

Civil War Archaeology

Since the late twentieth century, Civil War archaeology has been a thriving research area. Arkansas has been a location of much interest and continues to attract attention for work being done around the state. Federal and state agencies, along with private firms, have been part of this process. Their work focuses on several types of sites, including battlefields, camps, and civilian locations. BattlefieldsBattlefields get the most attention, as they are the Civil War sites people think of most commonly. For many years, archaeologists thought it was impossible to study battlefields because of their large size and the thin scattering of artifacts. Then, in 1983, a brush fire burned across the Little Bighorn Battlefield in Montana, exposing the ground surface and …

Civil War Centennial

As the nation approached the 100th anniversary of the Civil War in 1961, Arkansas also prepared to commemorate the events of those horrific years. Advance preparation began in 1959, with the legislature’s creation of the Civil War Centennial Commission (CWCC) of Arkansas, with Sam D. Dickinson as chairman. The CWCC coordinated Little Rock (Pulaski County) events with the Arkansas Commemorative Commission (later the Old State House Commission), headed by chairman Dr. D. D. McBrien of Henderson State Teachers College (now Henderson State University), with Agnes Loewer as executive director. These commissions also worked with state, city, and community organizations to coordinate and advertise programs across the state to commemorate Arkansas’s part in the Civil War. On August 27, 1960, the CWCC …

Civil War Markers and Memorials

Across the state of Arkansas, many markers and memorials commemorate the events of the Civil War. Some are located at or near the locations of significant events of the war, while others are located near county courthouses or in cemeteries. Some markers and monuments remain well-maintained, while others have disintegrated due to neglect and vandalism. In some cases, damaged markers and memorials have been replaced. Most of the earliest memorials were established in cemeteries where Civil War soldiers are buried. These cemetery markers can be found in Fayetteville (Washington County), Little Rock (Pulaski County), and Camden (Ouachita County), as well as other places. Other early markers of Civil War events were placed in Helena (Phillips County) and Pea Ridge (Benton …

Civil War Roundtable of Arkansas (CWRTA)

Jerry Russell, Bill O’Donnell, and Cal Collier began the Civil War Roundtable of Arkansas (CWRTA) in March 1964 during the height of the national Civil War Centennial celebrations. Russell served as its first president. The CWRTA has been active continuously since 1964, with eleven meetings each year (no meeting in December). The CWRTA has sponsored a number of bus tours over the years to regional Civil War battlefields and sites, including the Pea Ridge National Military Park (with Professor Bill Shea of the University of Arkansas at Monticello as the guide) and sites associated with General Frederick Steele’s Camden Expedition through southern Arkansas (guided by Ed Bearss, the retired chief historian of the National Park Service). In commemoration of the …

Civil War Sesquicentennial

The Civil War Sesquicentennial was commemorated in Arkansas from 2011 to 2015. The planning of events related to the sesquicentennial began in 2007 with the establishment of the Arkansas Civil War Sesquicentennial Commission by the Arkansas General Assembly as part of Act 635. The Civil War in Arkansas was commemorated during several anniversary events during the twentieth century. The United Confederate Veterans held a reunion in Little Rock (Pulaski County) in 1911, the fiftieth anniversary of the outbreak of the war. In 1959, the Arkansas General Assembly created the Civil War Centennial Commission of Arkansas, which operated until at least 1965. While other events commemorating the Civil War were held in the state over the next several decades, the Arkansas …

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 Historical Association

The Clark County Historical Association (CCHA), a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization since 1978, researches, preserves, and disseminates the county’s history. Brainchild of philanthropist Jane Ross and retired teacher Amy Jean Greene, it originated on October 30, 1972. A cross-section of county residents have provided leadership, including local politicians and representatives of both Ouachita Baptist and Henderson State universities. The association has remained egalitarian in membership and outlook, though membership (which averages about 250) has gone from a majority within to a majority outside the county. With Ross Foundation financial assistance, Greene led the association for the first five years. Quarterly meetings, always Sundays at 2:00 p.m., occurred mostly in Arkadelphia (Clark County) churches, and featured interested amateurs talking about a wide …

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 County Museum

The Clark County Museum, which opened in 2002, is operated by the Clark County Historical Association and located in the Missouri Pacific Depot in Arkadelphia (Clark County). The mission statement of the museum reads in part: “The museum is dedicated to preserving and presenting the rich and diverse history of Clark County from prehistoric times to the present. The museum is also committed to educating the public about the important people and events that have influenced the county. Artifacts that best represent the various eras in Clark County history will be displayed for preservation and educational purposes within the museum.” The Clark County Historical Association was founded on October 30, 1972, in Arkadelphia. While members of the group desired to …

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. …