Arkansas History - the history of Arkansas
   
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Vacation 2 USA   >   Arkansas   >   History
Vacation 2 USA   >   History   >   Arkansas History

   
 

Arkansas History


Prior to the westward movement of Native American people, Arkansas was inhabited by Quapaw, Caddo, and Osage Nations.

The first European to reach the region was the Spaniard, Hernando de Soto, at the end of the 16th Century. Early Spanish and French explorers gave the state its name which is probably a phonetic spelling for the French or Catalan word for "downriver people" - a reference to the Quapaw Native Americans.

Arkansas was part of the area acquired by the United States in the 1803 Louisiana Purchase from France. Prior to statehood, the region was known as the "Arkansaw Territory". In this territorial period, the five "civilized" tribes, namely the Choctaw, Chickasaw, Creek, Cherokee, and Seminole, inhabited Arkansas.

Arkansas was admitted to the Union on June 15th 1836 as the 25th state. Arkansas was a slave state, but initially refused to join the Confederate States of America during the American Civil War, although it did join later, and was the scene of several battles.

During the Civil Rights struggle, Arkansas was the site of a famous confrontation between the federal government and local whites, who were resisting the desegregation of Central High School in the state capital, Little Rock. During this period, President Eisenhower famously sent troops to escort nine African-American students who were trying to enroll in the school.

Bill Clinton, the 42nd President of the United States (President from 1993 to 2001), was born in Hope, Arkansas, and served as Governor of the state (50th and 52nd Governor of Arkansas) for almost 12 years prior to being elected President.


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Arkansas: A Narrative History

By Jeannie M. Whayne & George Sabo

Brand: University of Arkansas Press
Hardcover (600 pages)

Arkansas: A Narrative History
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Arkansas: A Narrative History is a comprehensive history of the state that has been invaluable to students and the general public since its original publication. Four distinguished scholars cover prehistoric Arkansas, the colonial period, and the nineteenth and twentieth centuries and incorporate the newest historiography to bring the book up to date for 2012. A new chapter on Arkansas geography, new material on the civil rights movement and the struggle over integration, and an examination of the state's transition from a colonial economic model to participation in the global political economy are included. Maps are also dramatically enhanced, and supplemental teaching materials are available.

An Arkansas History for Young People, Fourth Edition

By Shay E. Hopper & Jane Browning

Brand: University of Arkansas Press
Hardcover (525 pages)

An Arkansas History for Young People, Fourth Edition
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Adopted by the State of Arkansas for 2008 Once again, the State of Arkansas has adopted An Arkansas History for Young People as an official textbook for middle-level and/or junior-high-school Arkansas-history classes. This fourth edition incorporates new research done after extensive consultations with middle-level and junior-high teachers from across the state, curriculum coordinators, literacy coaches, university professors, and students themselves. It includes a multitude of new features and is now full color throughout. This edition has been completely redesigned and now features a modern format and new graphics suitable for many levels of student readers. The completely revised fourth edition includes new unit, chapter, and section divisions as well as five brand-new chapters: an introductory chapter with information on the symbols, flag, and songs of Arkansas; chapter 2, which covers the geography of Arkansas; chapter 3, on state and local government; chapter four, on economics and tourism; and a “modern” chapter on the Arkansas of today and the future, which completes the learning adventure. This edition also has two “special features”: one on the Central High School crisis of 1957 and another on the William J. Clinton Presidential Library. It also has new and interesting features for students like the “Guide to Reading” (at the beginning of each chapter, there is a list of important terms, people, places and events for the student to keep in mind as he or she reads [corresponding to blue vocabulary words in the text, which are define in the margin]), “County Quest,” “I Am an Arkansan,” “Did You Know?” “Only in Arkansas,” “A Day in the Life,” “Chapter Reflection” questions and activities, over forty-five new content maps, and a comprehensive new map atlas.

A History Of Southern Missouri And Northern Arkansas: Being An Account Of The Early Settlements, The Civil War, The Ku-Klux, And Times Of Peace.

By William Monks

CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform
Paperback (250 pages)

A History Of Southern Missouri And Northern Arkansas: Being An Account Of The Early Settlements, The Civil War, The Ku-Klux, And Times Of Peace.
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Published in 1907, this is a history of Southern Missouri and Northern Arkansas, including early settlements, the Civil War, the Ku Klux Klan and times of peace.

ARKANSAS: A Narrative History

By JEANNIE M WHAYNE

University of Arkansas Press
Hardcover (416 pages)

ARKANSAS: A Narrative History
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Four distinguished scholars, each focusing on a particular era, track the tensions, negotiations, and interactions among the different groups of people who have counted Arkansas as home. George Sabo III discusses Native American prehistory and the shocks of climate change and European arrival. He explores how surviving native groups carried forward economic and docial institutions, which in turn proved crucial to early colonists. Morris S. Arnold examines the native communities and the roles of minority groups and women in the development of law, government, and religion; the production of goods; and market economies. Jeannie M. Whayne shows how these multicultural relationships unfolded during hte subsequent era of American settlement. But mutuality ended when white settlers transplanted plantation agriculture and slavery to formerly native lands. Thomas DeBlack shows that the plantation society, while prosperous, also brought the state into the Civil War. He analyzes banking fiascoes, the state's reputation for violence, the mixed blessings of statehood, and the war itself. Whayne returns to discuss different groups' access to the political process; prostwar economic issues, including women's work; and the interrelated problems of industrialization, education, and race relations. The Civil Rights Acts of the 1960s, transformed political and social landscapes, but vestiges of the old attitudes and prejudices remain in place.

Arkansas Curiosities: Quirky Characters, Roadside Oddities & Other Offbeat Stuff (Curiosities Series)

By Janie Jones

Globe Pequot Press
Paperback (304 pages)

Arkansas Curiosities: Quirky Characters, Roadside Oddities & Other Offbeat Stuff (Curiosities Series)
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Your round-trip ticket to the wildest, wackiest, most outrageous people, places, and things the Natural State has to offer!

A Documentary History of Arkansas

University of Arkansas Press
Paperback (342 pages)

A Documentary History of Arkansas
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This collection of documents represents a behind-the-scenes look at Arkansas from earliest times to 1984. Here are newspaper articles, government bulletins, legislative acts, broadsides, letters, and speeches. Collectively, they give a firsthand glimpse at how the twenty-fifth state’s history was made. Consideration is given to social and cultural aspects of Arkansas history, with special attention focused on the role played by women and blacks.

Arkansas in Modern America, 1930–1999 (Histories of Arkansas)

By Ben F. Johnson III

Brand: University of Arkansas Press
Paperback (304 pages)

Arkansas in Modern America, 1930–1999 (Histories of Arkansas)
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  • Arkansas in Modern America, 1930-1999 (Histories of Arkansas)
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This elegantly written narrative traces Arkansas's evolution from a primarily rural society in the early 1900s to its expanding manufacturing economy and its growing prosperity and parity with the rest of the nation. Ben Johnson explores the influence of federal-state relations, beginning with the New Deal programs of President Franklin Roosevelt and continuing through the administrations of native son Bill Clinton. With particular sensitivity, he examines organized labor in the timber industry and in row crop agriculture; school desegregation, "white flight," and the private academy movement in the delta region; the growth of Wal-Mart and the poultry industry in the northwest section of the state; and the expansion of outdoor recreation and tourism as lakes were constructed and game populations rejuvenated. This book is particularly impressive for the breadth of its scope. Johnson offers detailed information on women, music and literature, organized religion, environmental trends, and other important cultural influences. Third in the popular Histories of Arkansas series, Arkansas in Modern America extends the narrative into the contemporary era with a format aimed at students and general readers. This important book will set the standard, for years to come, for analysis and interpretation of Arkansas's place in the twentieth century.

All About Searcy County, Arkansas: History, Folklore and Random Trivia (All About the County) (Volume 1)

By E. Steven Newby

CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform
Paperback (152 pages)

All About Searcy County, Arkansas: History, Folklore and Random Trivia (All About the County) (Volume 1)
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All About Searcy County Arkansas: History, Folklore and Random Trivia is a fun book that explores a rural Arkansan county which has a deep history spanning back more than ten thousand years, and a rich culture--and more than a little mystery. Discover the challenges that confronted the earliest European settlers. See how bushwackers left the county in lawless ruin at the close of the Civil War, and how a railroad shaped the destiny of an entire region. Within are tales of an ancient silver mine, lost since the days of the Spanish Conquistadors, of a town that banded together to save its saloon from the might of the flooding Bufallo River, and of a hideous monster said to lurk in caves, haunting the hills and woods of Searcy County for centuries. Not only is this book an entertaining and insightful read, but sales help fund childhood literacy projects in Searcy County, through Terrapin Hollow Educational Foundation.

With Fire and Sword: Arkansas, 1861-1874 (Histories of Arkansas)

By Thomas A. Deblack

Brand: University of Arkansas Press
Paperback (263 pages)

With Fire and Sword: Arkansas, 1861-1874 (Histories of Arkansas)
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  • ISBN13: 9781557287403
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Product Description:
When Arkansas seceded from the Union in 1861, it was a thriving state. But the Civil War and Reconstruction left it reeling, impoverished, and so deeply divided that it never regained the level of prosperity it had previously enjoyed. Although most of the major battles of the war occurred elsewhere, Arkansas was critical to the Confederate war effort in the vast Trans-Mississippi region, and Arkansas soldiers served—some for the Union and more for the Confederacy—in every major theater of the war. And the war within the state was devastating. Union troops occupied various areas, citizens suffered greatly from the war's economic disruption, and guerilla conflict and factional tensions left a bitter legacy. Reconstruction was in many ways a continuation of the war as the prewar elite fought to regain economic and political power. In this, the fourth volume in the Histories of Arkansas series, Thomas DeBlack not only describes the major players and events in this dramatic and painful story, but also explores the experiences of ordinary people. Although the historical evidence is complex—and much of the secondary literature is extraordinarily partisan—DeBlack offers a balanced, vivid overview of the state's most tumultuous period.

Command and Control: Nuclear Weapons, the Damascus Accident, and the Illusion of Safety

By Eric Schlosser

Penguin Books
Released: 2014-08-26
Paperback (656 pages)

Command and Control: Nuclear Weapons, the Damascus Accident, and the Illusion of Safety
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**The documentary Command and Control, directed by Robert Kenner, finds its origins in Eric Schlosser's book and continues to explore the little-known history of the management and safety concerns of America's nuclear aresenal.**

The documentary will air on PBS's American Experience on January 10th. 


A myth-shattering exposé of America’s nuclear weapons


Famed investigative journalist Eric Schlosser digs deep to uncover secrets about the management of America’s nuclear arsenal. A groundbreaking account of accidents, near misses, extraordinary heroism, and technological breakthroughs, Command and Control explores the dilemma that has existed since the dawn of the nuclear age: How do you deploy weapons of mass destruction without being destroyed by them? That question has never been resolved—and Schlosser reveals how the combination of human fallibility and technological complexity still poses a grave risk to mankind. While the harms of global warming increasingly dominate the news, the equally dangerous yet more immediate threat of nuclear weapons has been largely forgotten.

Written with the vibrancy of a first-rate thriller, Command and Control interweaves the minute-by-minute story of an accident at a nuclear missile silo in rural Arkansas with a historical narrative that spans more than fifty years. It depicts the urgent effort by American scientists, policy makers, and military officers to ensure that nuclear weapons can’t be stolen, sabotaged, used without permission, or detonated inadvertently. Schlosser also looks at the Cold War from a new perspective, offering history from the ground up, telling the stories of bomber pilots, missile commanders, maintenance crews, and other ordinary servicemen who risked their lives to avert a nuclear holocaust. At the heart of the book lies the struggle, amid the rolling hills and small farms of Damascus, Arkansas, to prevent the explosion of a ballistic missile carrying the most powerful nuclear warhead ever built by the United States.

Drawing on recently declassified documents and interviews with people who designed and routinely handled nuclear weapons, Command and Control takes readers into a terrifying but fascinating world that, until now, has been largely hidden from view. Through the details of a single accident, Schlosser illustrates how an unlikely event can become unavoidable, how small risks can have terrible consequences, and how the most brilliant minds in the nation can only provide us with an illusion of control. Audacious, gripping, and unforgettable, Command and Control is a tour de force of investigative journalism, an eye-opening look at the dangers of America’s nuclear age.


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