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.

Arkansas History: A Journey through Time: The Growth of the Twenty-Fifth State of the Union from 1833 to 1957

By Arlen Jones

Arlen Jones
Released: 2015-10-23
Paperback (222 pages)

Arkansas History: A Journey through Time: The Growth of the Twenty-Fifth State of the Union from 1833 to 1957
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  • Arkansas History A Journey Through Time The Growth of the Twenty Fifth State of the Union from 1833 to 1957
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Arkansas History: A Journey through Time-The Growth of the Twenty-Fifth State of the Union from 1833 to 1957 places in the hands of students and teachers a curated compilation of excerpts from original sources that tell the story of Arkansas from the founding efforts of the first advocates for the state's formation in 1833 through the confrontation at the Little Rock Central High School in 1957 that brought international attention to the American civil rights movement.

The author, Arlen Jones, brings decades of experience both as classroom teacher and educational administrator to his work to assemble and interpret the sources contained in Arkansas History: A Journey through Time. By writing with one eye focused on the state's educational standards, he has produced a book that tells the story of the state's history and that meets the needs of contemporary classes. To help the book serve as a valuable classroom resource, the back of the book contains lesson plans, worksheets, notes about Common Care standards, and a bibliography.

Arkansas History: A Journey through Time helps history come to life by giving voice to the people whose actions entwined to make the history of Arkansas. If you are a student or a teacher who desires to learn more about the twenty-fifth state's history, then this work will meet your needs.

An Ozark Culinary History: Northwest Arkansas Traditions from Corn Dodgers to Squirrel Meatloaf (American Palate)

By Erin Rowe

The History Press
Released: 2017-09-11
Paperback (144 pages)

An Ozark Culinary History: Northwest Arkansas Traditions from Corn Dodgers to Squirrel Meatloaf (American Palate)
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Northwest Arkansas' High South cuisine is replete with nostalgia, fresh ingredients, tall tales and rural roots. In the 1890s, Ozark apples fed the nation. Welch's Concord grapes grew in Arkansas vineyards. Local poultry king, Tyson, still satisfies America's chicken craving. Discover timeless Ozark traditions in the realms of forest, farm and table. Local chef turned author Erin Rowe recounts her culinary adventures stomping grapes, canning hominy, picking Muscadines, gathering wild watercress and tracking honeybees. Featuring fifty heirloom recipes dating as far back as the early 1800s, this delectable narrative is sure to whet your curiosity and appetite. An Ozark Culinary History celebrates it all, from chow-chow to moonshine.

Arkansas Beer: An Intoxicating History (American Palate)

By Brian Sorensen

The History Press
Released: 2017-09-11
Paperback (128 pages)

Arkansas Beer: An Intoxicating History (American Palate)
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Arkansas's booze scene had a promising start, with America's biggest brewing families, Busch and Lemp, investing in Little Rock just prior to Prohibition. However, by 1915, the state had passed the Newberry Act, banning the manufacturing and selling of alcohol. It was not until sixty-nine years later that the state welcomed its first post-temperance brewery, Arkansas Brewing Company. After a few false starts, brewpubs in Fayetteville, Fort Smith and Little Rock found success. By 2000, the industry had regained momentum. An explosion of breweries around the state has since propelled Arkansas into the modern beer age.

Civil War Arkansas: A Military Atlas

By Randy Puckett

CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform
Paperback (214 pages)

Civil War Arkansas: A Military Atlas
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Students of Arkansas History agree that a definitive atlas of Antebellum Arkansas is challenging to find. This authoritative volume includes newly digitized Arkansas historical sites that have come to represent a vivid picture of the state over one hundred and fifty years ago. This book brings to life the numerous landscapes on which countless human dramas played out during the Civil War in Arkansas. Created by one of the Confederacy’s leading trans-Mississippi cartographers, this indispensable aid to the Arkansas historian and genealogist combines colorful, detailed maps of an atlas with accompanying cartographers notes to facilitate context of the thousands of historical sites included in this atlas: • Academies: 2 • Battlefields: 4 • Bridges: 192 • Businesses: 119 • Camps: 99 • Churches: 133 • Cotton Gins: 5 • Ferries: 68 • Fords: 240 • Fortifications: 3 • Forts: 5 • Houses: 1,348 • Lakes: 124 • Landings: 30 • Mountains: 316 • Municipalities: 376 • Post Offices: 14 • Prairies: 404 • Schools: 7 • Rivers 925 • Townships 1,567 • Road (segments) 3,409

Hidden History of Fort Smith, Arkansas

By Ben Boulden

Ben Boulden
Released: 2012-03-04
Paperback (128 pages)

Hidden History of Fort Smith, Arkansas
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  • Hidden History of Fort Smith Arkansas
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During the days of American westward expansion Fort Smith was the gritty frontier town whose lawless reputation became known both east and west of the Mississippi. Dubbed Hell on the Border," the last developed township just before unsettled native territory, Fort Smith laid low more than its fair share of settlers, pioneers, and outlaws alike. Yet after years of disorder, reformers and lawmen helped tame the city's wild ways, beginning Fort Smith's transformation into the prosperous city it is today. Yet buried beneath Fort Smith's infamous past are forgotten stories, untold tales, and little known facts concealed just below the city's historical surface. After years spent researching the city's history for his historical column in the Times Record, journalist Ben Boulden uncovers Fort Smith's hidden history."

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.

Champion Trees of Arkansas: An Artist's Journey

By Linda Williams Palmer

Palmer Linda Williams
Hardcover (95 pages)

Champion Trees of Arkansas: An Artist s Journey
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  • Champion Trees of Arkansas An Artist s Journey
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In Champion Trees of Arkansas, Linda Williams Palmer explores the state’s largest trees of their species, registered with the Arkansas Forestry Commission as “champions.” Through her beautiful colored-pencil drawings, each magnificent tree is interpreted through the lens of season, location, history, and human connection.

Readers will get to know the cherrybark oak, rendered in fall colors, an avatar for the passing of seasons. The sugar maple, with its bare limbs and weather-beaten trunk, stands sentry over the headstones in a confederate cemetery. The 350-year-old white oak was once dubbed the Council Oak by Native Americans, and the post oak, cared for by generations of the same family, has its own story to tell.

Palmer travelled from Delta swamps to Ozark and Ouachita mountain ridges over a seven-year period to see and document the champions and to talk with property owners and others willing to share the stories of how these trees are beloved and protected by the community, and often entwined with its history. Champion Trees of Arkansas is sure to inspire art and nature lovers everywhere.

Arkansas, 1800-1860: Remote and Restless (Histories of Arkansas)

By S. Charles Bolton

Brand: University of Arkansas Press
Paperback (224 pages)

Arkansas, 1800-1860: Remote and Restless (Histories of Arkansas)
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Often thought of as a primitive backwoods peopled by rough hunters and unsavory characters, early Arkansas was actually productive and dynamic in the same manner as other American territories and states. In this, the second volume in the Histories of Arkansas, S. Charles Bolton describes the emigration, mostly from other southern states, that carried Americans into Arkansas; the growth of an agricultural economy based on cotton, corn, and pork; the dominance of evangelical religion; and the way in which women coped with the frontier and made their own contributions toward its improvement. He closely compares the actual lifestyles of the settlers with the popularly held, uncomplimentary image.

Separate chapters deal with slavery and the lives of the slaves and with Indian affairs, particularly the dispossession of the native Quapaws and the later-arriving Cherokees. Political chapters explore opportunism in Arkansas Territory, the rise of the Democratic Party under the control of the Sevier-Johnson group known as the Dynasty, and the forces that led Arkansas to secede from the Union. In addition, Arkansas’s role in the Mexican War and the California gold rush is treated in detail.

In truth, geographic isolation and a rugged terrain did keep Arkansas underpopulated, and political violence and a disastrous experience in state banking tarnished its reputation, but the state still developed rapidly and successfully in this period, playing an important role on the southwestern frontier.



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