November 10, 1947
A state committee adopted “The Arkansas Traveler” as the title and melody of Arkansas’s second state song, with lyrics to be added after submissions from the public. In 1949, the State Song Commission published lyrics to the old fiddle tune with no indication of authorship. Two verses offered a nostalgic look at the traditional tale of the Arkansas Traveler, while the chorus offered sentiments worthy of any progressive booster. The legislature did not ratify the commission’s choice, but this updated version of the “Traveler” was the state’s de facto official song from 1949 to 1963. Despite its traditional roots, it was not popular, perhaps because of its somewhat awkward lyrics (particularly the rhyming of “Hurrah” with “Arkansas”).