Entry Type: Thing - Starting with E

E. Fay and Gus Jones House

The E. Fay and Gus Jones house, located at 1330 N. Hillcrest Avenue in Fayetteville (Washington County), has been the residence of architect Fay Jones (1921–2004) and his wife, Mary Elizabeth “Gus” Jones (1921–2014), as well as their two daughters. Completed in May 1956, it was designed by Jones upon his return to Fayetteville after a short period of employment in the office of Frank Lloyd Wright. A skillful composition of stone, wood, and glass, sheltered by a deeply overhanging roof, the Jones house is emblematic of the organic principles Jones sought in his work and shows the influence of his experiences with Wright. Jones selected a lot adjacent to a wooded area at the northern edge of town, situating …

E. Ritter & Company

E. Ritter & Company is one of the most successful and long-lasting family-owned businesses in the state. Headquartered in Marked Tree (Poinsett County), the privately held corporation is the parent company of Ritter Communications and Ritter Agribusiness. Though incorporated in 1906, the business was actually founded in 1889 by Ernest Herman Ritter Jr. The original business entity was a general merchandise store located in what was then a semi-permanent sawmill community. As opportunity arose, Ritter moved into other ventures, such as road and bridge building; timber cutting and milling; fish and game shipping; and the ice business. Interested in technology, Ritter installed a small electrical plant to run his ice business. He then hooked the rest of the company businesses, …

E&M Recording Company and My Records

aka: My Records
In the 1960s, Little Rock (Pulaski County) was home to E&M Recording Company, a studio owned by Earl Fox. The initials in the company name stood for “Earl” and “Myrna,” Fox’s wife. Through his two independent record labels, E&M Recording Company and My Records, which he established later, Fox provided a creative outlet and commercial venue for local singers and musical groups. My Records, in particular, played an important role in nourishing the creative energy released in the late 1960s profusion of central Arkansas rock and roll groups. In 1959, Fox built a sound studio behind his house at 1612 South Buchanan Street in Little Rock; this was an avocational enterprise, which he undertook for his love of music and …

Eagle [Steamboat]

The Eagle was a 118-ton steamboat that was the first steamer to navigate up the Arkansas River to Little Rock (Pulaski County), stopping at the capital on its way to deliver supplies to Dwight Mission near modern-day Russellville (Pope County). The Eagle, which was built in 1818 and commanded by a Captain Morris, reached Little Rock on March 16, 1822, having left New Orleans, Louisiana, seventeen days earlier and taken fifty-one hours to reach the territorial capital from the mouth of the Arkansas River—a journey that would have taken up to a month by keelboat. The Arkansas Gazette reported that Little Rock’s citizens were “very agreeably surprised” by the vessel’s arrival, which “reflects much credit on Capt. Morris for his …

Earthquakes

Numerous earthquakes occur every year throughout the state of Arkansas, but most go unnoticed. Earthquakes that are felt can be startling and serve as good reminders that Arkansas is located near one of the most hazardous earthquake zones in the country. Earthquakes have been documented in Arkansas as early as 1699 by missionaries traveling down the Mississippi River near Helena (Phillips County). Although it is uncommon for major earthquakes to occur a great distance from active tectonic boundaries, earthquakes associated with the New Madrid Seismic Zone (NMSZ) have been some of the largest earthquakes ever to strike North America. The NMSZ is an active earthquake zone extending from Cairo, Illinois, into Marked Tree (Poinsett County). Earthquakes are caused by movement …

East Arkansas Community College

East Arkansas Community College (EACC) is a comprehensive two-year college dedicated to meeting the educational needs of its service area in eastern Arkansas. The college has served as a leader for social and economic improvement and continued growth in the region. Citizens of St. Francis County created a college committee in 1968 out of a desire and need for a community college. At the time, there was no access to higher education in the area, with the exception of Memphis, Tennessee, and Jonesboro (Craighead County). Students who were unable to relocate had no other options. In June 1969, the committee—named the Crowley’s Ridge Community College Corporation—received approval for its initial charter. In 1971, Betty Jo Hodges donated $25,000 to the …

EAST Initiative

The EAST Initiative, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit headquartered in Little Rock (Pulaski County), provides oversight, training, and support for the nationally recognized EAST model of education that is practiced in schools across the nation. EAST, originally an acronym for Environmental and Spatial Technology, is an educational program that combines elements of technology education, collaborative teamwork, and service learning in a model that stresses student engagement. EAST was piloted at Greenbrier High School in Greenbrier (Faulkner County) during the 1995–96 school year. Founder Tim Stephenson was a second-career educator working with at-risk students who were struggling or underachieving in the traditional classroom atmosphere. He created an alternative environment utilizing self-directed, project-based learning, allowing the students to choose their own projects according to …

Ebenezer Monument

The Ebenezer Monument is located at the corner of 9th and Church streets in Mena (Polk County). It was constructed in 1936 by citizens of Mena during their fight against the perceived evils of Commonwealth College, located in rural Polk County. The monument was added to the National Register of Historic Places on January 30, 1992. Commonwealth College began operating in Polk County in late 1924. The college traced its beginnings to the Newllano Cooperative Colony in Louisiana. Many of the members of the colony moved to Polk County. After operating briefly in Mena, the college purchased land thirteen miles outside of town and moved there in April 1925. The college educated students while operating as a commune where all …

Ecclesia College

Ecclesia College describes itself as a Christian “work learning” college located in Springdale (Washington and Benton counties). Founded in 1975 by Oren Paris II as a training center for young missionaries, Ecclesia was accredited as a four-year college in 2005, with a strong emphasis in Christian faith and character, work ethic, mentoring, and service. In 2017, the college became embroiled in a scandal regarding the redirection of General Improvement Fund (GIF) money by state legislators to the small college. Ecclesia College is a branch of the “Ecclesia Network.” Ecclesia, the parent organization, was incorporated in 1976 and has participated in Christian service worldwide through ministries such as Youth With a Mission (a one-year training program), Twila Paris Productions, Bibles for the …

Eddie Mae Herron Center & Museum

aka: St. Mary’s AME Church (Pocahontas)
aka: Pocahontas Colored School
The Eddie Mae Herron Center & Museum in Pocahontas (Randolph County) preserves and displays the history of slavery, civil rights, and African Americans. The building and associated grounds are located at the corner of Archer and Pratt streets. The building housing the museum was originally St. Mary’s African Methodist Episcopal (AME) Church and also the Pocahontas Colored School. The first evidence of St. Mary’s AME Church is ascribed to a building in the northern part of Pocahontas, around Bland and Schoonover streets. The building was purportedly erected sometime in 1865. The congregation subsequently moved the building to its current location between 1918 and 1919. The one-room wood-frame building served as both a school and as a house of worship, with …

Education Reform

Education reform, the process of improving public education through changes in public policy, has been slow and often ineffective in Arkansas. All aspects of public education are open to reform, including school finance, teacher quality, curriculum, transportation, and school facilities. Modern education reforms in Arkansas include school choice initiatives, alternative teacher pay, and standards-based accountability and testing. Arkansas has historically been one of the lowest-performing states academically, and even today, despite major improvements in funding and student achievement during the last decade, Arkansas still ranks below the national average on many objective measures. Arkansas also has one of the most undereducated populations in the nation in terms of the percentage of adults with college degrees and the percentage of high …

Education, Higher

Formal education above the high school level came to be known as higher education in the twentieth century. In Arkansas, higher education appeared, at least in name, prior to the Civil War, but the state university and most of the private institutions were postwar products. Early Nineteenth CenturyDuring Arkansas’s colonial period (1686–1802), there is no evidence of any public interest in higher education and little interest in even the most elementary sort. The transfer of Louisiana from France to the United States resulted in the arrival in Arkansas of numerous persons with backgrounds in higher education. James Miller, the first territorial governor, had attended Williams College in Massachusetts, as had Chester Ashley, the leader of the state bar association and …

El Dorado Confederate Monument

The El Dorado Confederate Monument is a sculpture erected in 1910 by the Henry G. Bunn Chapter of the United Daughters of the Confederacy (UDC) to commemorate local men who had served in the Confederate army during the Civil War. Ten Confederate infantry companies were raised in Union County during the Civil War, and other men from the county served in various cavalry and artillery units. In late 1908 or early 1909, the Henry G. Bunn Chapter of the United Daughters of the Confederacy, which had formed in 1907 and named itself for the colonel of the Fourth Arkansas Infantry Regiment, decided to raise a monument to the local men who had fought for the South. “Without a cent of …

El Dorado Junior College

El Dorado Junior College was a public junior college open from 1928 to 1942 in El Dorado (Union County). Operating on the campus of El Dorado High School, it was established as a preparatory school by the El Dorado School District for students hoping to enter universities. The high school and El Dorado Junior College often shared equipment, instructors, laboratories, the gymnasium, and other facilities, but the two institutions remained separate in many respects. In particular, the high school mostly used the newer auditorium building for lectures, while the college mostly used the adjacent classroom building. This red brick, three-story classroom building had actually been constructed in 1905 as the high school for El Dorado. Because of its use as …

El Dorado Promise

The El Dorado Promise is a scholarship program established in January 2007 by Murphy Oil Company. The initiative provides El Dorado High School graduating seniors with a grant for tuition and expenses at any two- or four-year post-secondary institution in the United States. The maximum amount paid by the grant is set by the highest annual resident tuition at an Arkansas public university, but the funds can be used to attend any accredited U.S. college or university. This program covers only associate and baccalaureate degrees. The El Dorado Promise was modeled after the successful Kalamazoo Promise in Michigan, and the city of El Dorado (Union County) has seen similar growth and increased national attention. Murphy Oil, headquartered in El Dorado, …

Election Fraud

Questionable balloting procedures and fraudulent vote counts began early in Arkansas’s political history and were a regular component of the state’s politics, especially in rural areas, until about 1970. The state’s tradition of one-party rule in which consequential elections were decided in party primaries, the absence of unbiased political information in the form of independent newspapers, and a traditionalistic political culture in which the activities of the ruling elite were generally unquestioned by the masses all contributed to an environment in which fraud—fundamentally problematic for a representative democracy—could persist. Such fraudulent behavior in Arkansas had its roots in the politics of “The Family,” the Democratic regime that controlled the state’s politics in the period following statehood. This Johnson-Conway-Sevier-Rector cousinhood accumulated …

Election Law of 1891

The passage of the Election Law of 1891 was essential to the solidification of power in the state for Democrats during the post-Reconstruction era and was the first step in making Arkansas a one-party state. In conjunction with the subsequent Poll Tax Amendment, controversially passed during the 1892 general election, the Election Law of 1891 effectively disfranchised African Americans in Arkansas and legally suppressed Republican and third-party political opposition. By 1888, Democratic Party officials in Arkansas were expressing concern about perceived election fraud in the state and the threat of federal oversight of state elections. Evidence of widespread election fraud and the highly publicized murder of Republican candidate John M. Clayton brought about mounting calls for election reform legislation. After much …

Eleven Point River

The Eleven Point River rises in the Ozark Mountains of Missouri near the town of Willow Springs and flows south-southeast, passing through the Mark Twain National Forest and entering Arkansas in Randolph County. It empties into the Spring River west of what is now Davidsonville Historic State Park and lends its name to the town of Eleven Point (Randolph County). The part of the Ozark Plateau through which the Eleven Point River flows was home to human habitation approximately as long ago as 10,000 B.C., according to archaeological excavations near Greer Springs, which empties into the Eleven Point. In addition, a few Indian mounds dating from the Mississippian Period have been located in the valley of the Eleven Point. In …

Elk

Among the many success stories involving wildlife in Arkansas, a high-profile example is the elk of the Buffalo National River country. Wiped out in pioneer and early settlement days, the elk were brought back beginning in 1981, and, since then, the big animals have become well enough established that they can be hunted on a limited basis. The elk have also become a reliable tourist attraction in Newton County and the surrounding area. Elk were native to Arkansas but were wiped out by changing habitat, mostly the clearing of land. The variety in the area in the early days was the eastern subspecies of elk, which is extinct. By the time Arkansas became a state in 1836, elk were dwindling, …

Emancipation

By 1860, about twenty-five percent of Arkansas’s population was enslaved, amounting to more than 111,000 people. The emancipation of these people in Arkansas took place as a result of the American Civil War, their freedom achieved due to the decisions made by Union military leaders, President Abraham Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation, and the actions of the slaves themselves. Slavery’s abolishment meant more than simply the loss of human property and the end of a labor system—it ended a social relationship that had defined the state’s early development. The process of emancipation in Arkansas began before Lincoln’s formal Emancipation Proclamation. Finding that Confederates had used slave labor to create physical obstacles in his path across Arkansas in 1862, Union general Samuel R. …

Eminent Domain

The Arkansas and U.S. Constitutions permit the process of eminent domain, which is the taking of private property for public purposes as long as there is just compensation paid to the owner, legal authorization for the taking, and an observance of procedural due process. Eminent domain can be used to obtain property for public purposes such as improvement districts, electric power lines, natural-gas pipelines, irrigation and drainage companies, cemeteries, roadways, bridges, dams, and state colleges and universities. Interpretation of the term “public purpose” has produced much of the case law on eminent domain, including Pfeifer v. City of Little Rock, a 2001 Arkansas case, and Kelo v. City of New London, Connecticut, a 2005 U.S. Supreme Court case; these cases …

Emmet United Methodist Church

The Emmet United Methodist Church is located at 209 Walnut Street in Emmet (Nevada and Hempstead counties). The church was constructed around 1917 and was listed on the National Register of Historic Places on September 23, 2009. Emmet was platted in 1873 when construction on the Cairo and Fulton Railroad reached the area. Most of the land where the town is located became the property of the president and vice president of the railroad in 1874. Several lots in the town were set aside for the use of schools and churches. A Methodist church was established in the area around 1855 and was used for several decades. The church received a lot in the new town for construction of a …

Encounter with the Unknown

Encounter with the Unknown is a low-budget 1973 feature film directed by Harry Thomason of Hampton (Calhoun County). It was shot at various locations in or near Little Rock (Pulaski County) using a number of local actors and crew. The ninety-minute film was rated PG and released by Centronics International. It was produced by Joe Glass and written by Glass, Jack Anderson, and Hillman Taylor. Encounter with the Unknown was the first film created by Thomason, who would later become known for projects including the 2004 documentary The Hunting of the President along with four Arkansas-based movies: The Great Lester Boggs (1974), So Sad About Gloria (1975), The Day It Came to Earth (1977), and Revenge of Bigfoot (1979). He …

End of the Line

End of the Line is a film set in the fictional town of Clifford, Arkansas, that deals with working-class issues of the loss of job security, worker entitlement, and the powerlessness of average people when up against faceless corporations. The film stars Wilford Brimley and Arkansas native Levon Helm and features in supporting roles Holly Hunter, Kevin Bacon, Clint Howard, and Arkansas native Mary Steenburgen (who was also the executive producer). End of the Line was the first film directed by Arkansas native Jay Russell, who went on to direct many well-known films, including Tuck Everlasting, Ladder 49, and My Dog Skip. Russell also co-wrote the script with John Wohlbruck. Much of the movie was filmed in or near Little …