travelgrove Travel Guides

Fort Smith History, Arkansas

Enjoying the rich history of Fort Smith

Are you planning to spend your vacations at a travel destination that is rich in culture and history? What can be better than holidaying with friends and family in Fort Smith?   In order to make the best of your holidays, it is better to plan a trip to this city and enjoy its rich history.

Founded in 1817, Fort Smith was a military post that kept unity and peace between Cherokee and Osage Indians. The Army cast off the city in 1824 and then moved about 80 miles west in order to be near the Osage territory’s center. The land spectator and Army settler John Rogers purchased the lands and then promoted the development of Fort Smith, ultimately influencing the federal government in order to re-create a powerful military existence in this city during the Mexican War and Indian Removal era.

The name comes from the popular Thomas Adams Smith, the person commanding the Army Rifle Regiment of United States in 1817. The General ordered Stephen H. Long, the topographical engineer to search for some suitable place on Arkansas River. But it is surprising to note that the General never made any visit to the town.

Two notable historical figures from Fort Smith include William Henry Harrison Clayton and Isaac Parker, the renowned judge. In the year 1874, Harrison Clayton was appointed as U.S. Attorney in Arkansas Western District by Ulysses S. Grant, the President. The town of Fort Smith flourished as a great community full of saloons, outlaws and brothels all over the river. Later, Clayton found that a powerful judge was essential to bring order and law to the area. With Powell Clayton and Grant, William Clayton made Parker the judge of Fort Smith.

Even William was appointed as the US Attorney with the help of four presidents and served as the Indian Territory’s Chief Justice. He also served as an instrument to achieve Oklahoma statehood. Judge Clayton as well as Governor Frantz lost the territorial ranks when Oklahoma was admitted to the  Union. In addition, Fort Smith predicted a financial booming situation in 1920s and First World War by Armed Forces of US in Military Reservation of Fort Chaffee in 1850s.

So, book your tickets and accommodation in advance and enjoy the rich traditions and history of this beautiful city of Fort Smith.

Ask our travel experts a question about Fort Smith

Things about Fort Smith you may be interested in

Be the first who requests a site listing for this page.

Read our members' reviews about Fort Smith

No reviews have been added yet for this category. Be the first to add a new one.

Read our members' travel tips about Fort Smith

No travel tips have been added yet for this category. Be the first to add a new one.
the best travel deals provided by TravelZoo...

Fort Smith City Ratings

  • Ratingunrated
    City Rankunrated
  • History & Culture: not rated
  • Night Life & Entertainment: not rated
  • Family & Fun: not rated
  • Outdoors Activities: not rated
  • Food: not rated
  • Sightseeing: not rated
  • Shopping: not rated
  • Public Transportation: not rated
  • Must visit this place: not rated
   Welcome to Travelgrove  register tell a friend bookmark it