Arkansas was the 25th state to enter the Union, which it did in June of 1836. The land that would one day become Arkansas was “discovered” by Hernando DeSoto in 1541. At the time, the land was occupied by Native American tribes, including the Quapaws.
Later, the land was taken over by the French, and was eventually sold to the United States as part of the Louisiana Purchase in 1803.
Today, Arkansas spans an area of 53,187 square miles, including over 600,000 acres are lakes with 9,740 miles of rivers and streams. The Ozark plateaus are located in the north of the state, and the Oauchitas to the south. The highest point in Arkansas is Mount Magazine, which is 2,753 feet above sea level. The Mississippi River runs along most of eastern border of the state, while the Arkansas River Delta creates a fertile alluvial plain.
It wasn’t until the 1990s that more people lived in urban centers than in rural parts of the state. Today, the major metropolitan areas in Arkansas include Little Rock, Texarkana and Fayetteville.
Now that you’re moving to Arkansas, there are a couple facts you may find interesting:
- The term Arkansas means “south wind”, a term used to describe the Native American Quapaws tribe.
- Brown-and-Serve Rolls were created during the Great Depression by Meyer’s Bakery of Little Rock.
- Notable Arkansas residents have included poet Maya Angelou, Johhny Cash, Bill Clinton, and Ernest Hemingway.
- Over the years, a number of movies have been filmed in Arkansas, including Sling Blade, The Firm, and Bloody Mama.
- Little Rock, the state’s capital, takes its name from a stone outcropping used as a landmark by early European travelers.
- Little Rock is home to the state’s only zoo, which houses over 200 unique species.
Once you’ve moved to Arkansas you’ll be looking for some interesting things to do. Here’s a list of several things you can do to keep you and your family happy:
- Unusual parks include the Ozark Folk Center, which is dedicated to the life and times of early European settlers. Another interesting attraction is Crater of Diamonds, where visitors may search for precious stones and keep anything of value that they find.
- Museum lovers can visit the Arkansas Art Center, Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art, the MacArthur Museum of Arkansas Military History, and the Arkansas Museum of Discovery.
- Civil War buffs may be interested in a wealth of historic sites throughout the state. The state was home to a number of battles, as the North wanted to control the Mississippi River. Among these historic locations are the sites of the battles at Helena, Prairie Grove, and Pea Ridge.