Little Rock Look Back: First Pulaski Heights City Council Meeting

Pul Heights CC minutesOn September 28, 1905, the first meeting of the Pulaski Heights City Council took place.  The newly elected Mayor was J. H. Joslyn, the Recorder was F. D. Leaming, and new Alderman present were E. E. Moss, Maxwell Coffir and C. C. Thompson.  Pulaski Heights had been incorporated on August 1, 1905.  At that time its population was estimated at between 300 and 400.

The first ordinance, which was offered by E. E. Moss, was to set a tax rate and give the City the ability to levy taxes.  Next was a motion to establish a committee to establish rules and procedures for the council. The final business before the Council was to allow the Recorder to order stationary, a seal and a record book (that record book is now in the vault at Little Rock City Hall).

The next meeting would be October 28.  At that meeting, two other Aldermen are mentioned in the minutes (Fauble and Paul) but were absent from that meeting as well.  Mr. C. M. Fauble was present at the third meeting.  Mr. R. O. Paul did not appear until the fifth meeting (December 13, 1905).

Interestingly the Recorder had a vote in the Council meetings (which was not a practice in the City of Little Rock at the time).

The Council did not have a permanent meeting place until the third meeting.  At that point in time, they used space in the offices of Dr. Hockersmith.

Pulaski Heights was a separate City until January 1916.  On January 4, 1916, Little Rock voters approved the annexation of Pulaski Heights by a ten-to-one margin, and the suburb became the city’s ninth ward. This established a couple of precedents for the City of Little Rock which are in effect to this day.  The first is that Little Rock would not be a central city surrounded by a variety of small incorporated towns (in the manner that St. Louis and other cities are).  It was this thought process which has led the City to continue to annex properties.

In addition, this move to annex Pulaski Heights was the first time that the City grew toward the west.  Previous growth had been to the south.  By emphasizing western expansion, this has allowed Little Rock to continue to grow.

1 thought on “Little Rock Look Back: First Pulaski Heights City Council Meeting

  1. Dear Scott (aka Little Rock Culture Vulture),     I read and appreciate all your articles but want to thank you for this one in particular since it provides details and sources relevant to one of my research projects for the Arkansas Jazz Heritage Foundation/Arkansas Jazz Hall of Fame.  The AJHF holds its Arkansas Jazz Hall of Fame inductions, annual meetings, board meetings, and weekly meet-and-greets before/during Monday Night Jazz at The Afterthought, the only Little Rock venue which has presented live jazz continuously (at least once a week) since the 1970s.  The Afterthought and its adjoining restaurant (located at 2721 Kavanaugh Boulevard in the historic Hillcrest neighborhood) occupy the building (on the National Register of Historic Places) which served as the town hall for Pulaski Heights before its annexation by Little Rock on 4 January 1916.       If you are a jazz aficionado, you are certainly welcome to join the Arkansas Jazz Heritage Foundation, which is dedicated to educating the general public about the historical significance of jazz in Arkansas; membership ($15 per year, 1 July – 30 June) is open to any adult interested in preserving, celebrating, and promoting jazz in Arkansas.  The Foundation (an all-volunteer, non-profit corporation with Articles of Incorporation approved by the State of Arkansas on 7 January 1992) established the Arkansas Jazz Hall of Fame in 1994 and holds inductions in even-numbered years.  Through volunteerism and/or donations, the Foundation supports various “shared-mission” nonprofits: Art Porter Music Education; Central Arkansas Library System/Butler Center for Arkansas Studies; Dreamland Ballroom/Friends of Dreamland Ballroom; Mosaic Templars Cultural Center/Friends of Mosaic Templars Cultural Center; Wildwood Park for the Arts.     Though frequently cited as a source in the Central Arkansas Library System’s Encyclopedia of Arkansas History and Culture, as well as its newly published Encyclopedia of Arkansas Music, the AJHF website (http://www.arjazz.org/) is designed primarily as an archival reference.  The best source for current information is the Arkansas Jazz Heritage Foundation’s page at http://www.facebook.com/, where several times each week I post details, photos, and links related to recent/ongoing/upcoming jazz events in Arkansas.  (As Arkansas Editor for All About Jazz’s Jazz Near You – a global network of websites in more than 250 cities – I also post some events, festivals/series, and venues at http://www.jazznearyou.com/.)  The following attachments (which you are encouraged to read and share) are available upon request but not posted to the AJHF website or Facebook page:   1.  Arkansas Jazz Hall of Fame reference sheet 2.  AJHF list of jazz resources/websites 3.  AJHF quarterly newsletter – January 2013 4.  AJHF quarterly newsletter – June 2013 5.  AJHF membership application     On 30 September 2013, in a private dining room at The Afterthought, a quarterly meeting will be held by the AJHF’s board (President James Thomson; Vice President Benita Porter Browning; Secretary Alita Mantels; Treasurer Michael L. Cobb, CPA; Directors C. Michael Bailey, Dito Morales, Eugene Porter, Jim Porter, Kate Sain).  Board members will then enjoy Monday Night Jazz (8-11 p.m.) by musicians who are faculty, alumni, and friends of the University of Arkansas at Monticello: saxophonists Matt Schatz, Gary Meggs, Timothy Woods; guitarist Les Pack; bassist Stuart Coles; percussionist Claude Askew.  (Several of these performers were featured earlier this month during the week-long 22nd Annual Hot Springs JazzFest.  Other accomplished jazz artists will be invited to sit in.)  Should you wish to attend this (or any other) Monday Jazz performance, you are invited to do so as my guest.       Have a jazzy day!   

    ALITA MANTELS Secretary for Arkansas Jazz Heritage Foundation/Arkansas Jazz Hall of Fame (http://www.arjazz.org/)   Please consider “liking” the Arkansas Jazz Heritage Foundation’s page at http://www.facebook.com/ and joining its open group at http://www.linkedin.com/.  AJHF also posts its profile and activities at http://www.jazznearyou.com/ and http://www.AmericanTowns.com/ar/littlerock.

    alita.mantels@sbcglobal.net 1421 North University Avenue, N108 Forest Place, Little Rock, AR 72207 501.661.1604 (Land), 501.91ALITA (Cell)

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