47 Interesting Facts About Arkansas

Last updated on February 7th, 2023

44. Arkansas became a territory on March 2, 1819, out of the territory of Missouri after Missouri petitioned for statehood. The territory existed until June 15, 1936, when it was admitted to the Union as the State of Arkansas.[21]

45. In 1932, Arkansas elected the first women to serve a full term as a United States Senator. Her name was Hattie Caraway. She served for 14 years in the U.S. Senate.[24]

46. Mammoth Spring, with nine million gallons of water flowing hourly, is one of the world’s largest springs.[25]

47. According to the Encyclopedia of Arkansas History & Culture, the highest temperature ever recorded happened on Aug. 10, 1936, with a whopping 120 degrees in Ozark.[26]

About the Flag of Arkansas

flag of Arkansas. Arkansas fact file
The state flag of Arkansas.

1. Design and Symbolism

The flag of Arkansas features a white diamond with a thick blue border on a red field — a nod to the state’s productive diamond mining industry. Within the blue boundary are 25 white stars because Arkansas is the 25th state admitted into the Union.

Four more blue stars are inside the white diamond. One is above the word “ARKANSAS,” representing the Confederacy. Meanwhile, the remaining stars symbolize the three nations that ruled over the territory: France, Spain, and the US. Arkansas is the third state formed after the Louisiana Purchase, after Louisiana and Missouri.

Near the bottom of the diamond are “twin stars,” representing the twin states of Michigan and Arkansas. President Andrew Jackson signed their acts of admission on the same day: June 15, 1836. However, Michigan had to fulfill conditions that delayed its official entry to 1837.

2. Adoption

Arkansas adopted the current flag on February 26, 1913. However, the state made minor modifications in 1923, 1924, and 2011.

3. Technical Details

The flag has a proportion of 2:3. The exact colors are Old Glory Red and Old Glory Blue, as stated in the enabling law. The secretary of state can only purchase flags made in the US.

4. History

In 1911, the Federation of Women’s Clubs sent a flag proposal to the Arkansas legislature, but the latter failed to approve it. Efforts continued in the following years.

The Daughters of the American Revolution figure once again in the tale of a flag’s creation. In 1912, their Pine Bluff chapter heard of the newly commissioned battleship USS Arkansas. They wanted to present it with an official state flag, but Secretary of State Earle Hodges said there was none.

Members of DAR urged him to hold a design contest for its immediate creation. A school teacher and poet, Willie Kavanaugh Hocker, sent the winning proposal. She is the daughter of a farmer from Kentucky. Her family moved to Arkansas when she was around eight years old.

Hocker’s original design had no state name, with only a row of three stars in the middle. It was the legislative committee that asked for this feature. She agreed to make the change, placing “ARKANSAS” at the center, one star on top, and two underneath. The first flag became official in 1913.

In 2018, the Arkansas Natural and Cultural Resources Council donated $20,000 to restore the original 1913 flag and a 1923 version.

5. Flag Revisions

In 1923, the legislature added one blue star to bring the total to four. The arrangement was two stars above the name and another two below. They represented the Confederate States, France, Spain, and the US.

In 1924, they rearranged the stars such that one remained at the top while the rest were at the bottom. This placement stands today. However, the 1924 design had to wait until 1987 before confirmation into law by Governor Bill Clinton.

In 2011, Governor Mike Beebe signed another law with new details about the flag. It specified the colors to ensure uniformity. It also limited official flag purchases to US-based manufacturers.

In 2019, Rep. Charles Blake sponsored a bill to update the flag symbols. He wanted the lone blue star at the top to represent the Native American tribes instead of the Confederacy. It did not get enough votes in the committee, but Blake vowed to keep fighting.

Arkansas – Quick facts and State symbols

State AbbreviationAR
State CapitalLittle Rock
Largest CityLittle Rock
State SizeTotal (Land + Water): 53,179 sq miles; Land Only: 52,068 sq miles
Population
3,025,891
(Estimate July 1, 2021 from United States Census Bureau)
StatehoodJune 15, 1836
State rank by population33rd
State rank by date of formation25th
State rank by area29th
Number of Counties75
Complete list of 50 states and number of counties in each
DemonymArkansan
Arkansawyer
Arkanite
Bordering StatesLouisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Oklahoma, Tennessee, Texas
Official LanguageEnglish
Highest PointMount Magazine
2,753 ft (839 m)
Lowest pointOuachita River at Louisiana border
55 ft (17 m)
Mean elevation650 feet above sea level
Length 240 miles (386 km)
Width270 miles (435 km)
GovernorAsa Hutchinson (R)
Lieutenant GovernorTim Griffin (R)
Electoral Votes6
State MottoRegnat populus (The people rule)
State NicknameBear State
Land of Opportunity
Natural State
Wonder State
% Water2.09
Famous peopleCortez Kennedy (Pro Football player)
Arky Vaughan (Baseball player)
Nat Clifton (Basketball player)
Emma Stone (Actress)
Iris DeMent
(Singer)
U.S. President Born in Arkansas1. William Jefferson Clinton.
State DinosaurArkansaurus fridayi
State BirdMockingbird
State ButterflyDiana Fritillary Butterfly
State CreedArkansas Creed
State FlowerApple blossom
State Fruit & Vegetable
Vine Ripe Pink Tomato
State GemstoneDiamond
State GrainRice
State GrapeCynthiana grape
Historic cooking vesselDutch oven
State InsectHoney bee
State MammalWhite-Tailed Deer
State mineralQuartz Crystal
State NutPecan
State rockBauxite
State TreePine Tree
Longitude89° 39′ W to 94° 37′ W
Latitude33° 00′ N to 36° 30′ N
Time ZoneCentral Time Zone
Websitewww.arkansas.gov
Area Codes327, 479, 501, 870
Table last updatedDecember 9, 2022