The legacy of Arkansas State Parks is to preserve our state's diverse beauty and
history, so that all Arkansans and visitors may find emotional and intellectual
connections to their heritage.
Explore this website! It is designed to reveal stories about Arkansas heritage and
help you understand how the history of Arkansas relates to your life. To find out
more about any park or museum listed here, click on the park name. Doing so will
open a new browser window with that park's web page. We hope you and your family
will enjoy visits to these Arkansas state parks and museums.
In these places, your life becomes connected to the people of Arkansas's past.
Historic Homes & Buildings
- Historic homes and public buildings in Arkansas state parks place you where history
happened. Hundreds of structures, each one unique, have been captured in their time
periods. Here, your life becomes connected to those who designed or built the buildings;
lived or worked in each one; or like you, were welcomed as Arkansas travelers.
- Three historic towns in the Arkansas state parks system preserve the fabric of life on the American frontier,
in the developing new state, and at a busy riverport. Two are preserved towns with complete structures; the third
is but landmarks from one of Arkansas's earliest townsites. Stand in these places. See, hear and envision life in
these once-thriving communities.
- Travel through time from the present to prehistory in the museums of Arkansas State Parks. From archeological
discoveries and effigy vessels to oil field technology; from frontier Arkansas to a turn-of-the-century train
depot; from cotton agriculture to one of the South's finest repositories of guns and Bowie knives, each artifact
tells a story. Each one forges a connection between you and the people of Arkansas's past.
- Conflict touches lives. During the Civil War, Arkansas played a major role in the Trans-Mississippi Theater as
the Union tried to hold Missouri in the Union and cut off Texas from the south. Walk the fields and streets where
events unfolded, revisit the soul of the past, and learn valuable lessons for the future.
Civilian Conservation Corps
- Within five Arkansas state parks are cabins, pavilions, bridges, trails, a lodge, and other works that
endure as a legacy to the craftsmanship of the Civilian Conservation Corps, the "Tree Army" of Franklin D.
Roosevelt's New Deal. These National Register of Historic Places components and National Historic Districts
were the first facilities built in Arkansas's state parks, and they served as the cornerstone of all further
development. When you encounter CCC/Rustic Style structures—architecture that mirrors the rugged natural
beauty of its surroundings—you too will understand why they are among America's most beloved park facilities.
Trail of Tears
- With few exceptions, all Native American tribes subjected to Indian removal came, by land or water, through
Arkansas during their journey westward. At several Arkansas state parks, you can walk a segment of the actual
route, or view it from above at an overlook, and gain new perspective on Indian removal.
- Archeology connects us with prehistory. Each artifact is a tangible link to past
cultures, and these inanimate objects are brought to life when park interpreters
and exhibits reveal connections between our lives and those in the past. Five Arkansas
state parks, including two in partnership with the Arkansas Archeological Survey,
serve as portals to the past.
National Register & Landmarks
- America's most significant historic treasures—those worthy of preservation—have
been deemed National Register of Historic Places or National Historic Landmark sites.
Twenty-two of Arkansas's state parks contain nationally recognized structures or
property. Visit these places. Experience them. Be inspired by them. These places
reveal Arkansas's chapter of America's great story.
Ozark Folk Center
- Dedicated to the perpetuation and interpretation of Ozark Mountain heritage, the Ozark Folk Center is one of America's
cultural treasures. Here, musicians perform traditional acoustic tunes, gifted artisans create heirloom-quality works, and
craftsmen demonstrate pioneer skills. Is your life connected to the ways of the past? Yes, and at the Ozark Folk Center, you'll
see, hear, and understand how.
- Trees are silent witnesses to our history. At every historic home, battlefield, and landmark, trees stood firmly
rooted while daily lives existed and historic events unfolded around them. Some of those trees still stand today.
Certain trees are recognized and honored as part of the Arkansas Famous and Historic Tree Program, including several
located in Arkansas state parks. Stand under these trees, touch their bark, listen to the wind rustle their leaves, and
let your imagination wonder what stories they could tell.
- Arkansas State Parks' museums and historic sites provide a variety of resources for teachers, students, and research
scholars. Teachers will find interpreters and educators trained to help students grasp Arkansas and national history.
Field trips bring history alive and provide memorable experiences based in the frameworks and strands of state-mandated