On March 2, 1819, the Arkansas Territory was created. It was carved out of the Missouri Territory (which itself had been carved out of the Louisiana Territory). The land consisted of what is now Arkansas as well as most of what is now Oklahoma.
Today (March 1) from 9am to 1pm, the Department of Arkansas Heritage is leading events to commemorate the bicentennial of the establishment of the Arkansas Territory. These will take place on the second floor of the rotunda at the Arkansas State Capitol. At 10am, Governor Asa Hutchinson will make remarks.
Throughout the commemoration there will be family-friendly activities and opportunities to learn about the history of Arkansas. Many of the divisions of the Department of Arkansas Heritage will be on hand. And, of course, there will be birthday cake!
Survey marker erected in 1926 at what is now Louisiana Purchase Historic State Park, photo by Brandon Rush
Today (January 2) at 12 noon, the Central Arkansas Library System Butler Center for Arkansas Studies kicks off its programming for 2019. First up is the monthly Legacies & Lunch program. Today’s focus is on the creation of the Arkansas Territory. The year 2019 marks 200 years since Arkansas was separated from Missouri.
Author and professor S. Charles Bolton, who taught history at University of Arkansas Little Rock for over three decades, will discuss the early history of the geographical region that became the state of Arkansas.
The state was formed on land that was part of the Louisiana Territory for a time before becoming the Missouri Territory. The federal government eventually sent the Hunter-Dunbar Expedition up the Ouachita River, and designated a spot in eastern Arkansas as the starting point for land surveys west of the Mississippi River. The U.S. government also built a military installation on the future site of Fort Smith. These actions led to the eventual creation of Arkansas Territory in 1819, followed by statehood in 1836.
About Legacies & Lunch
Legacies & Lunch is a free monthly program of the CALS Butler Center for Arkansas Studies that highlights Arkansas-related topics. Programs are held from noon to 1 pm on the first Wednesday of the month. Attendees are invited to bring a sack lunch; drinks and dessert are provided. A library parking discount is available upon request. For more information, contact 501-918-3030.