The Revolutionary War in Arkansas? Yes. Sort of. 18 months after Yorktown. News Traveled Slow.

Because Arkansas was part of the Louisiana Territory, and under the Spanish flag, one does not think about there being any Revolutionary War battles being fought on Arkansas soil.

But on April 17, 1783, the British and Spanish skirmished at Arkansas Post.  Sometimes known as Colbert’s Raid, this was part of a four year campaign of intermittent efforts by the British to stop the Spaniards from funneling money and supplies to the colonists via the Mississippi River.

James Colbert, a former British Army captain, led a loose group of British mercenaries as well as anti-Spanish members of the Chickasaw tribe on a series of raids in Louisiana and the lower Mississippi area.  He targeted Fort Carlos at Arkansas Post because of its proximity to the Arkansas and Mississippi Rivers.

The Fort had 33 Spanish soldiers and four members of the Quapaw tribe.  Colbert had over 80 men with him.  After an initial attack on the Post, several residents made it to the Fort which was then attacked.  Expecting surrender (and indeed there had been a brief truce), instead a Spanish sortie of 14 faced the 82. Shouting Quapaw war cries and firing their muskets, under the cover of darkness, this sortie surprised and confused the Colbert party.  Convinced that a large collection of Quapaw was attacking them, they scattered and retreated.

Today, the National Park Service at Arkansas Post offers information on this battle, one of the last of the Revolutionary War (and a full 18 months after Cornwallis surrendered to Washington at Yorktown).

The American Revolution in Arkansas

Because Arkansas was part of the Louisiana Territory, and under the Spanish flag, one does not think about there being any Revolutionary War battles being fought on Arkansas soil.

But on April 17, 1783, the British and Spanish skirmished at Arkansas Post.  Sometimes known as Colbert’s Raid, this was part of a four year campaign of intermittent efforts by the British to stop the Spaniards from funneling money and supplies to the colonists via the Mississippi River.

James Colbert, a former British Army captain, led a loose group of British mercenaries as well as anti-Spanish members of the Chickasaw tribe on a series of raids in Louisiana and the lower Mississippi area.  He targeted Fort Carlos at Arkansas Post because of its proximity to the Arkansas and Mississippi Rivers.

The Fort had 33 Spanish soldiers and four members of the Quapaw tribe.  Colbert had over 80 men with him.  After an initial attack on the Post, several residents made it to the Fort which was then attacked.  Expecting surrender (and indeed there had been a brief truce), instead a Spanish sortie of 14 faced the 82. Shouting Quapaw war cries and firing their muskets, under the cover of darkness, this sortie surprised and confused the Colbert party.  Convinced that a large collection of Quapaw was attacking them, they scattered and retreated.

Today, the National Park Service at Arkansas Post offers information on this battle, one of the last of the Revolutionary War (and a full 18 months after Cornwallis surrendered to Washington at Yorktown).

A Red, White and Blue sculptural experience in Little Rock

Thanks to Sculpture at the River Market, on this Independence Day holiday, one can see sculptures which are red, white and blue.

Some are featured below.

A red crane from Lorri Acott’s PEACE (2nd Street and Main Street)

A red bird from Dale Rogers’ RETRO TREES (Riverfront Park)

Kevin Box’s CRANE UNFOLDING (Riverfront Park)

Kathleen Caricof’s BEGINNING LIFE (Vogel Schwartz Sculpture Garden in Riverfront Park)

Tim Cotterill’s BIG BILL (Vogel Schwartz Sculpture Garden in Riverfront Park)

Kevin Box’s DANCING PONY (Vogel Schwartz Sculpture Garden in Riverfront Park)

 

Revolutionary War battle in Arkansas

Colbert's_RaidBecause Arkansas was part of the Louisiana Territory, and under the Spanish flag, one does not think about there being any Revolutionary War battles being fought on Arkansas soil.  But on April 17, 1783, the British and Spanish skirmished at Arkansas Post.  Sometimes known as Colbert’s Raid, this was part of a four year campaign of intermittent efforts by the British to stop the Spaniards from funneling money and supplies to the colonists via the Mississippi River.

James Colbert, a former British Army captain, led a loose group of British mercenaries as well as anti-Spanish members of the Chickasaw tribe on a series of raids in Louisiana and the lower Mississippi area.  He targeted Fort Carlos at Arkansas Post because of its proximity to the Arkansas and Mississippi Rivers.

The Fort had 33 Spanish soldiers and four members of the Quapaw tribe.  Colbert had over 80 men with him.  After an initial attack on the Post, several residents made it to the Fort which was then attacked.  Expecting surrender (and indeed there had been a brief truce), instead a Spanish sortie of 14 faced the 82. Shouting Quapaw war cries and firing their muskets, under the cover of darkness, this sortie surprised and confused the Colbert party.  Convinced that a large collection of Quapaw was attacking them, they scattered and retreated.

Today, the National Park Service at Arkansas Post offers information on this battle, one of the last of the Revolutionary War (and a full 18 months after Cornwallis surrendered to Washington at Yorktown).

32nd Democrat-Gazette Pops on the River tonight with ASO and fireworks

popsonriverPops on the River, presented by the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, is the state’s largest Fourth of July celebration and takes place this year on Saturday, July 4th in downtown Little Rock.

Pops on the River, in it’s 32nd year, is FREE to the public and will begin at noon outside the main gates of the First Security Amphitheater in the River Market Pavilions with a Kid’s Pavilion and Car Pavilion. The event will also have a marketplace with shopping, food trucks, a car show and other activities below the River Market Pavilions.

The event is free to the public and a portion of proceeds benefit a local charity. This year’s benefiting charity is Easter Seals of Arkansas. Pops on the River is also sponsored in part by the Little Rock Convention and Visitor’s Bureau, Chick-fil-A of Central Arkansas, Arkansas Flag and Banner and Landers FIAT.

There is a Military Appreciation Tent as well as musical performances throughout the day. The “Oh Say! Can You Sing?” finalists will also perform this evening.

Activities begin at noon.  Gates to the amphitheatre open at 5:30.  Chairs, blankets are encouraged. Open amphitheater seating is available, but limited. No coolers or outside food or drinks. No pets or fireworks allowed.

5:30pm – 9:30pm – Salute to the Troops. Sponsored by CHI St. Vincent (Riverfront Park) Record a video message to our men and women in the military in our Salute the Troops tent.

8:30pm – The Arkansas Symphony Orchestra (First Security Amphitheater) Conducted by Philip Mann. The Arkansas Symphony Orchestra performance is one not to miss.

9:30pm – Fireworks Celebrate our nation’s independence with the Pops on the River Fireworks finale – shot over the Main Street Bridge and visible to all of downtown Little Rock.

 

Frontier 4th at Historic Arkansas Museum today

FrontierFourthCelebrate Independence Day as it was celebrated on the Arkansas frontier. During the territorial and early statehood days of Arkansas, July 4 was THE holiday to celebrate.

Historic Arkansas Museum will be offering activities and demonstrations all day.  The afternoon activities include an old-time patriotic parade, 19th century music and encounters with people from the past.

Cheer “huzzah” during a reading of the Declaration of Independence by Congressman French Hill (around 3pm) and sign your own copy in the print shop. Watch out for Red Coats! This year marks the 240th anniversary of the start of the revolution. Watch a reenactment of two battles and a duel on the lawn near the farmstead.

Children can walk on stilts and play other pioneer games, and they’ll be invited to take up brooms and wooden rakes to train with the militia. They will also have the opportunity to create flags, streamers and signs to use in the parade.

Visit Historic Arkansas Museum for an afternoon of old-fashioned fun!

All activities are free and open to the public.

31st Annual POPS ON THE RIVER sponsored by Arkansas Democrat Gazette; including performance by Arkansas Symphony Orchestra

popsonriverPops on the River, presented by the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, is the state’s largest Fourth of July celebration and takes place this year on Friday, July 4th in downtown Little Rock.

Pops on the River, in it’s 31st year, is FREE to the public and will begin at noon outside the main gates of the First Security Amphitheater in the River Market Pavilions with a Kid’s Pavilion and Car Pavilion. The event will also have a marketplace with shopping, food trucks, a car show and other activities below the River Market Pavilions.

2-8:30pm – Military Appreciation Tent

All Military members (active, retired or dependents) are encouraged to check-in to receive a discount card to many of the vendors at Pops on the River. Other giveaways including t-shirts and koozies will be available while supplies last.

 

12:00pm – 8:30pm – Kids Pavilion (East Pavilion) sponsored by Arkansas Children’s Hospital

Join the fun at the pavilion with free bounce houses, crafts, games and activities for the kids. Free Hiland Dairy milk for the kids.

Join us as we Salute the Troops – kid’s are invited to write a letter or color a picture to send to a service man or women serving overseas. Sponsored by St. Vincent.

 

12:30pm – 1:45pm – Jeremy Geyer performs (Pavilion Plaza)

 

2:00pm – 8:00pm – Caricatures by John Deering (Kids Pavilion)

John Deering is the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette’s editorial cartoonist. The fee of $10 goes to support Our House Children’s Center.

 

2:00pm – 4:00pm – Uncle Sam (Kids Pavilion)

Uncles Sam visits the kids and will perform magic tricks and make balloon animals.

 

2:15pm – 3:30pm – Valley Ray performs (Pavilion Plaza)

 

4:00pm – 5:15pm – Northeast Northwest performs (Pavilion Plaza)

 

5:30pm – Gates to amphitheater open

Chairs, blankets are encouraged. Open amphitheater seating is available, but limited. You can purchase reserved seating for $10 in advance online. No coolers or outside food or drinks. No pets or fireworks allowed.

 

5:30pm – 8:30pm – Smile Photobooth presented by Delta Dental (Kids Pavilion)

Take July 4th themed pictures in the fun photobooth and leave with a free photostrip. You can also view and get a digital copy of your photo at http://www.facebook.com/DeltaDentalAR

 

5:30pm – 9:30pm – Salute to the Troops. Sponsored by St. Vincent (Riverfront Park)

Record a video message to our men and women in the military in our Salute the Troops tent. Free t-shirts to the first 100 who record their videos.

 

6:30pm – The Oh Say! Can you Sing? Finalists perform. (First Security Amphitheater)

Help the judges decide who will sing the National Anthem with the Arkansas Symphony Orchestra and win $500. See the finalists online now at http://www.arkansasonline.com/sing

 

7:00pm – Air National Guard Band of the Southwest (First Security Amphitheater)

The Air National Guard Band of the Southwest, historically known as the 531st Air Force Band, has over a sixty year history of sustaining the traditions and heritage that has become the hallmark of military bands. This forty-member concert band will provide patriotic and Americana music, from Sousa to Broadway to Motown.

 

8:30pm – The Arkansas Symphony Orchestra, presented by Delta Dental (First Security Amphitheater)

Conducted by Philip Mann. The Arkansas Symphony Orchestra performance is one not to miss.

 

9:15/9:30pm – Fireworks

Celebrate our nation’s independence with the Pops on the River Fireworks finale – shot over the Main Street Bridge and visible to all of downtown Little Rock.