"Scenic Vistas Around Every Bend" Top 5 Page for this destination Arkansas by deecat

Arkansas Travel Guide: 1,330 reviews and 3,912 photos

Natural State, Wonder State: Arkansas

"Who can be insensible to the beauty of the verdant hill and valley, to the sublimity of the clouded mountain?" British naturalist, Thomas Nuttall, describing Arkansas

Arkansas is a small, basically square-shaped state bordered by Missouri, Louisiana, Oklahoma, and Texas; the entire eastern border is the great Mississippi River! However, across the River is Tennessee and Mississippi.

I found the people of Arkansas to be unique. The style of the people depends on which part of the state you visit. Western and central Arkansas remind me people in the Midwest; the southern and eastern parts of the state are like being in the deep south; lastly, the people of the northern hills are like the spirited people I've met in Missouri.

One of the most controversial issues concerning Arkansas is how to pronounce it! The state's name had several different spellings and pronunciations until the General Assembly settled the matter in 1881. Since then, the state's name has been pronounced AR-kun-saw but written Arkansas. . Never pronounce the "s"!

Civil Rights in Arkansas

I remember this incident very well because I followed it closely.

In the 1950's, Arkansas lagged behind much of the rest of the country in the area of Civil Rights. In 1954, the Supreme Court of the United States ruled that separate public school for whites and blacks was unconstitutional. In 1957, nine black students enrolled in Little Rock's all-white Central High School. But, on opening day of the school, the Governor (Orval Faubus) called out the Arkansas National Guard Troops to block the black students from entering the school. President Dwight D. Eisenhower ordered federal troops to enforce the intergration law.
The next year, the state let Faubus actually close down Little Rock's public schools! Finally, in 1959, Little Rock's schools reopened to both blacks and whites.
It was a sad time in U.S. history, and I personally think that the 9 students who enrolled at all-white Central H.S. in 1957 were real heroes. I'm not alone in that believe.
In 1997, the Little Rock Nine came back to Central High to commemorate its integration, and President Bill Clinton spoke saying, "Forty years ago today, the nine climbed these steps, passed through this door, and moved our nation. And for that, we must all thank them."

Photo courtesy of the Little Rock Archives

Pros and Cons
  • Pros:Beautiful landscapes, hot springs, and mountains
  • Cons:Lingering prejudice in parts of the state
  • In a nutshell:A gorgeous state with friendly, down-to-earth people.
  • Last visit to Arkansas: Mar 2004
  • Intro Updated May 9, 2016
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Reviews (24)

Comments (32)

  • hunterV's Profile Photo
    Oct 1, 2011 at 10:10 AM

    Hello, Dee! Thanks for your colorful insight of Arkansas! Live and learn! ~

  • Sep 8, 2010 at 9:39 AM

    Some of my favorite people came from Arkansas! So organized. Easy to follow and quite helpful. Loved your research and background information. A pleasure to read.

  • toonsarah's Profile Photo
    Mar 24, 2010 at 8:59 AM

    Gosh, lots to enjoy here! Eureka Springs sounds great, and I love the Thorncrown Chapel, while the Arkansas Territorial Restoration would definitely interest me :-) And I enjoyed your fun facts a lot! Thanks for the great tour :-)

  • amandajayne81's Profile Photo
    Oct 16, 2009 at 11:28 PM

    Arkansas sounds like a wonderful place. We are hoping to visit next year.

  • hopang's Profile Photo
    Sep 22, 2009 at 9:31 AM

    Absolutely amazing Arkansas travel page with excellent images. Quapaw Quarter and Eureka Springs certainly have some fine architectural buildings. Thanks for the virtual tour. ~ho & pang

  • jillzi's Profile Photo
    Aug 17, 2009 at 12:20 PM

    Very informative and interesting. I like all the history, especvially about the Little Rock Nine. Your work is honest, inspiring, and helpful.

  • tiabunna's Profile Photo
    Mar 26, 2009 at 4:29 PM

    What a fact-filled page. From the intro which brought back distant memories of the civil rights movement to the curious 'fun-facts' and the ornate old buildings. Even Scott Joplin! Very enjoyable reading.

  • Smartblonde's Profile Photo
    Feb 11, 2009 at 10:35 AM

    I was inspired by your comments regarding the Little Rock Nine. Thanks for making them a central part of your page. S.

  • JLBG's Profile Photo
    Aug 10, 2008 at 10:18 PM

    Great page opening! I remember well the Little Rock Nine, it is a piece of history! The Quapaw Quarter houses are superb! I love the songs from Johnny Cash!

  • ATXtraveler's Profile Photo
    May 25, 2008 at 11:33 AM

    Luckily I am still larger than the largest Arkansas Watermelon!


“Yesterday is a cancelled check; tomorrow, a promissory note; today is the only cash you have; spend it wisely. Kay Lyons”

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