Please join us for the next meeting of the History Institute’s 2021-2022 virtual Evenings with History lecture series:
Railroads and Reconstruction in Arkansas
Dr. Charles Bolton, Professor Emeritus of History, UA Little Rock
Tuesday, 2 November, 2021 at 7:30 pm (online via Zoom)
To attend, register (for free) at https://ualr-edu.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZEvduqorz8rGdQep0njxvssBTTPiGzB89bJ. A Zoom link for the event will be provided upon registration.
The Reconstruction period of Arkansas history is well known for economic hard times, political turmoil, bitter racism, and large-scale violence, but it also saw the state’s most important transportation improvement between the arrival of steamboats in the 1820s and of automobiles in the 1920s. At the end of the Civil War, Arkansas had one working railroad that ran from Little Rock to DeValls Bluff on the White River, 48 miles away. When Radical Reconstruction ended in 1874, the capital city was connected by rail with St. Louis to the north and Texarkana and Texas railroads to the south. A branch line extended east to Memphis and another nearly to Fort Smith in the west. Arkansas had a transportation system capable of supporting rapid economic modernization, but its effectiveness, along with that of additional railroads in the 1880s, was limited by the Conservative backlash embodied by the Arkansas Constitution of 1874.
For more information about the History Institute and its Evenings with History lecture series, visit us at https://ualr.edu/history/history-institute/. If you have any questions, please contact Dr. Michael Heil at email@example.com.