Arkansas Facts and Trivia

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Arkansas - The Natural State

Admission to Statehood

June 15, 1836

Arkansas Territory
 

 

 

The Arkansas Territory was a historic, organized Territory of the United States from July 4, 1819 to June 15, 1836, when it was admitted as Arkansas, the 25th U.S. state.  Arkansas Post was the first territorial capital (1819-1821).  Little Rock was the second (1821-1836) and has continued to be Arkansas' State Capital.

There were 5 Governors of the Arkansas Territory from 1819 to 1836.

Arkansas Post

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

Arkansas Post, Arkansas was the first permanent French settlement in the lower Mississippi  River valley and was the first territorial capital of the State of Arkansas.  It was also the site of the only Revolutionary War combat in Arkansas as well as the site of an American Civil War Battle.

Arkansas Post was founded in 1686 by Henri de Tonti at the site of a Quapaw Indian village name Osotouy near where the Arkansas River enters the Mississippi River.  The site was a strategic point for France, Spain, the United States, and the Confederate States at different times in history.

In 1803 Arkansas Post became a part of the United States as part of the Louisiana Purchase.  The post was selected as the first capital of the Arkansas Territory and became the center of commercial and political life in Arkansas.  Prior to statehood the territorial capital was moved to Little Roc, Arkansas and Arkansas Post lost much of its importance.

During the American Civil War the Post became an important strategic site as it was the confluence of two major rivers.  In 1862 the Confederate Army constructed a massive earthwork known as Fort Hindman named after Confederate General Thomas C. Hindman.  In January of 1863 Union forces conducted an amphibious assault on the fortress backed by ironclad gunboats and destroyed both the fort and the civilian areas of Arkansas Post.

The former site of Arkansas Post was made into a state park in 1929.  In 1960 the site was designated as a National Memorial and a National Historic Landmark.  In 1966 Arkansas Post was added to the National Register of Historic Places.

Constitution 25th State
State Capital Little Rock (34.722N, 092.354W)
Number of Counties 75
Population 2,673,400 (2000 Census) - Ranked 33rd in US
Area Codes 479, 501, 870
Current Governor of Arkansas
Mike Bebee

 

 

 

 


 

State Bird:  Mockingbird

 

 

 

 

 

State Flower:  Apple Blossom
Pyrus coronaria

 

 

 


 

State Tree:  Pine (pinus)

 

 

 

 

 

State Gem:  Diamond

 

 


 

State Insect:  Honeybee

 

 

 


 

State Fruit and Vegetable:
South Arkansas Vine Ripe Pink Tomato

 

 

 


 

State Musical Instrument:  Fiddle

 

 

 

 

 

 

State Beverage:  Milk

 

 

 

 

 


 

State Mammal:  White-Tail Deer

 

 


 

State Rock:  Bauxite

 

 

 

 

 


(Used to make Aluminum cans)
State Mineral:  Quartz Crystal

 

 


 

State Flag
Adopted 1913
Designed by Ms. Willie K. Hocker of Wabbaseka, Arkansas

A diamond on a red field represents the only place in North America where diamonds have been discovered and mined.  The twenty-five white stars around the diamond mean that Arkansas was the twenty-fifth state to join the Union.  The top of the four stars in the center represents that Arkansas was a member of the Confederate States during the Civil War from 1861-1865..  The other three stars represent Spain, France, and the United States, countries that had earlier ruled the land that includes Arkansas.  The three stars also represent that 1803 was the year of the Louisiana Purchase when the land that is now Arkansas was acquired by the United States.  The three stars also represent that Arkansas was the third state created from the Louisiana purchase by the United States, after Louisiana and Missouri.

State Songs
 
Arkansas - music and words by Wayland Holyfield
Oh, Arkansas - music and words by Terry Rose & Gary Klaff
State Anthem Arkansas by Eva Ware Barnett
State Historic Song

 
The Arkansas Traveler
Lyrics by the Arkansas State Song Selection Committee, 1947
Music by Colonel Sanford (Sandy) Faulkner, about 1850
State Folk Dance American Folk Dance (square dancing)
State Motto Regnat pupulus - The People Rule
State Nickname The Natural State
Origin of State Name

 

 

 


 

French interpretation of a Sioux word "acansa" meaning "downstream place" (source: 50states.com/Arkansas)

Many names of places in our state came from the languages of the explorers who discovered and lived in Arkansas.  The Native Americans, Spanish, French and Americans all helped name places in Arkansas.  The word "Arkansas" came from the Quapaw Indians, by way of early French explorers.  The explorers met a group of Native Americans, known as the Ugakhpah, which means "people who live downstream".  These Native Americans later were called the Quapaw, who were also called Arkansaw.  This name came to be used for the land where the Native Americans lived. (source Arkansas Secretary of State)

State Parks Arkansas State Parks
National Forests Ouachita National Forest and the Ozark National Forest
Area Land and Water 53,182 Square Miles (Ranked 29th in US)
Area Land 52,075 Square Miles (Ranked 27th in US)
Area Water 1,107 Square Miles (Ranked 31st in US)
Highest Point Mount Magazine - 2,753 feet (Ranked 34th in US)
Lowest Point Ouachita River - 55 feet (Ranked 26th in US)
Topography


 

Eastern:  delta & prairie
Southern:  lowland forests
Central Western: Ouachita Mountains
Northwestern:  Ozark Mountains
Geographic Center Pulaski, 12 miles Northwest of Little Rock, Arkansas
Economy

 

Agriculture:  Poultry and eggs, cattle, hogs, soybeans, sorghum, cotton rice, milk
Industry:  Food processing, electric equipment, fabricated metal products, machinery, paper products, bromine, vanadium, aircraft restoration and maintenance

Presidential Birthplace William Jefferson Clinton, 1992-2001 (42nd President)
Born:  August 19, 1946 in Hope, Arkansas
U.S. Representatives House 107th Congress
U.S. Senators Senate 107th Congress
Territorial Governors 1819-1836






 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

General James Miller (1819-1825) - James Miller (April 25, 1776 - July 7, 1851) was a member of the United States House of Representatives from New Hampshire, the first Governor of Arkansas Territory, and a Brigadier General in the United State Army during the War of 1812.

James Miller was born in Peterborough, New Hampshire.  He started a law practice at Greenfield, New Hampshire in 1803.  He joined the New Hampshire state militia and commanded an artillery unit.  He was noticed by General Benjamin Pierce who recommended that he be commissioned as a Major in the regular army.  Miller joined the 4th United States Infantry.

In 1811 Miller's unit went to Vincennes, Indiana to fight Indians where he was promoted to Colonel.  In May of 1812 his regiment was moved to Detroit, Michigan.  Miller was taken as a prisoner of war in 1813 and was later exchanged.

In 1814 Miller was Colonel of the 21st Infantry Regiment and led his men in the capture of the British artillery at the Battle of Lundy's Lane where his "I will try sir!" quote became famous and where he earned the name of the "Hero of Lundy's Lane".

Miller was made a Brigadier General by the U.S. Congress after the battle but soon left the army in 1819.  He was elected to the United States House of Representatives in 1824 but never took office.  Miller died of a stroke at Temple, New Hampshire in 1851.

Miller County, Arkansas is named fro James Miller.

General George Izard (1825-1828) George Izard (October 25, 1776 - November 22, 1828) was a General in the United States Army during the War of 1812 and a Governor of the Arkansas Territory.

George Izard was born in London, England.  He was the son of Ralph Izard who was a delegate to the Continental Congress and United States Senator from South Carolina.  He graduated from the College of Philadelphia (now the University of Pennsylvania) in 1792.  He attended military schools in England and Germany and received military engineering instruction in France.

Izard served as aide-de-campe to Alexander Hamilton and engineer of Fort Pinckney.  He served in a diplomatic position ins Lisbon, Portugal for a time.

During the War of 1812 Izard served in the United States Army where he rose to the rank of General.  He served as Wade Hampton's second in command until Hampton's resignation when he succeeded him.

Izard was in charge of U.S. land forces protecting Lake Champlain in 1814 until ordered to reinforce the Army of Niagara.  Izard was appointed Governor of the Arkansas Territory in 1825 and served until his death in 1828.  George Izard died of complications of gout in Little Rock, Arkansas.  He was originally buried in an unknown location was his body was moved in 1843 to the historic Mount Holy Cemetery in Little Rock, Arkansas.

Izard County, Arkansas is named for George Izard.  General Izard's original artillery until still exists as the 1st Battalion of the 3rd Air Defense Artillery Regiment.

Robert Crittenden (acting) (1828-1829) Robert Crittenden (January , 1797 to December 18, 1834) was acting Governor of the Arkansas Territory.  Robert Crittenden was born near Versailles, Kentucky.

Crittenden served as Secretary of Arkansas Territory from 1819 to 1829.  He served as acting Governor of Arkansas while James Miller was delayed for an extended period en route to Arkansas.  Crittenden called the first legislature into session and took responsibility for organizing the new territory.  Crittenden was never appointed Governor of the territory but amassed considerable political power during his ten years as territorial secretary.

Crittenden served as United States Commissioner for the 1824 Treaty with the Quapaw Indians. 

Robert Crittenden was the son of John Crittenden (1754-1789) who was a Major in the Continental Army and a member of the Virginia House of Burgesses, the brother of United States Senator John Jordan Crittenden, and granduncle of Thomas Theodore Crittenden, Jr. who was Mayor of Kansas City, Missouri.

Crittenden mortally wounded Representative Henry Wharton Conway in a duel on October 29, 1827.  He died in Vicksburg, Mississippi.

Crittenden County, Arkansas is named for Robert Crittenden.

John Pope (Democrat) (1829-1835) John Pope (1770 to July 12, 1845) was a United States Senator from Kentucky, a member of the United States House of Representatives from Kentucky, Secretary of State of Kentucky, and Governor of Arkansas Territory.

John Pope was born in Prince William County, Virginia in 1770.  He lost his arm during his youth and was known as the "One-arm Pope".  He studied law and moved to Springfield, Kentucky, where he was admitted to the bar.  He practiced law in Washington, Shelby and Fayette County, Kentucky.  He was elected to the Kentucky House of Representatives in 1802 and served again in 1806 and 1807.  He was elected as a Republican to the United States Senate, serving from 1807 to 1813, and served as President pro tempore of the Senate during the Eleventh Congress.  Pope served as a member of the Kentucky Senate from 1825 to 1829 and was elected three times as a Whig to the United States House of Representatives.  From 1829 to 1835 he served as the Governor of the Arkansas Territory.  During his term as governor he arranged for the construction of the Old State House which remains the oldest surviving state capitol west of the Mississippi River.

Pope was married to the sister-in-law of President John Quincy Adams.  John Pope died in Springfield, Kentucky on July 12, 1845.  He is buried in the Springfield Cemetery.

Pope County, Arkansas is named for John Pope.

William Savin Fulton (Democrat) (1835-1836)  William Savin Fulton (June 2, 1795 to August 15, 1844) was a Democratic member of the United States Senate and Governor of Arkansas Territory. 

William Savin Fulton was born in Cecil County, Maryland.  He was a graduate of Baltimore College in 1813.

At the outbreak of the War of 1812 he enlisted in a company of volunteers at Fort McHenry.  He was admitted to the bar in 1817 and practiced law at Gallatin, Tennessee.  He was military secretary to General Andrew Jackson during the First Seminole War in 1818.  In 1820 he settled in Florence, Alabama and became county judge in 1822.

He served as Secretary of Arkansas Territory from 1829 to 1835.  He Was appointed Governor of the Arkansas Territory and served from 1835 to 1836 when Arkansas was admitted to the Union.  Her served as United States Senator from 1836 until his death in 1844.  William Savin Fulton died in Little Rock, Arkansas.  He is buried at the historic Mount Holly Cemetery in Little Rock.

Fulton County, Arkansas is named for William Savin Fulton.

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