November 30, 1844
Polk County, named for President James K. Polk, was separated from Sevier County by the legislature. Located on the western edge of Arkansas, Polk County was home to the comedy team of Lum and Abner, country singer T. Texas Tyler, and the controversial Commonwealth College. The 1860 census gave the Polk County population as 4,090 whites and 172 African-American slaves. Slaves were not widely used in Polk County because the mountainous terrain was not good for row crops, though some corn, wheat, oats, and cotton were farmed early on. Hunting and timber attracted many of the early settlers, who came principally from Illinois, Tennessee, and Kentucky.