Arkansas - My Family's Second Home

Discussion in 'Travel Stories' started by giradman, Nov 2, 2016.

  1. giradman

    giradman
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    Central High School - Little Rock Nine - Racial Integration - 1957

    After visiting the Old State House, I returned to pick up Susan - we lunched across the street at the Marriott Hotel, then drove to the Little Rock Central HS National Historic Site, which is near the State Capitol - as discussed in the quotes below, in September of 1957, the school gained national prominence over racial integration. President Eisenhower had to send in federal troops - see the video below, if interested.

    In 1998, Congress established the Little Rock Central High School National Historic Site, which is across the street from the historic Mobil gas station, the 'news center' for the events that occurred. The pics below show the school, some of the many photos taken during the crisis, the visitor's center/gas station, and a few w/ the local Civil Rights activist, Daisy Bates. Next post on the Arkansas History Museum in the downtown area. Dave :)

    P.S. Central High School is still active w/ over 2400 students in 2011 (Source above quotes) - the school is not open for touring unless scheduled. Also, "the American Institute of Architects named it “America’s Most Beautiful High School.” (Source).


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  2. scifan57

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    Your posts about Little Rock are very interesting. The sites you mentioned are just what I'd visit if I ever go there.
     
  3. giradman

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    Thanks Scifan.. - a lot of interest to see there, and more to come - also missed a number of attractions which I may just mention for anyone who may be reading this thread and plan to visit the area. Dave :)
     
  4. giradman

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    Historic Arkansas Museum

    After our visit to the Central HS National Historic Site, we drove back to downtown to see the Historic Arkansas Museum which is a combination of an 'inside' museum w/ permanent and changing exhibits, and preservation and restoration of a number of the city's first houses and businesses - see quotes below (all from the link); the insight of Louise Loughborough long ago was responsible for saving and restoring this historic downtown neighborhood; the entire complex only occupies a few blocks but is a treasure for the city. Pics below include outside (including an aerial view) of the museum and the buildings, along w/ several of the inside of several historic sites.

    There were interesting exhibits in the main museum, for me the most interesting ones were: 1) Hugo & Gayne Preller's House of Light - photography couple who lived on a houseboat and traveled a number of Arkansas rivers/stayed in several towns, and peddled their talents; 2) We Walk in Two Worlds - a permanent exhibit about the Caddo, Osage and Quapaw Indian tribes of Arkansas from early times to today; and 3) Knife Gallery - another permanent exhibit emphasizing the Bowie knife which was made for Jim Bowie in Washington, Arkansas by blacksmith, James Black - this will be the topic of the next post. Dave :)

    ADDENDUM: Notice the skyline changes in the two cityscape pics - amazing!

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    #24 giradman, Nov 4, 2016
    Last edited: Nov 4, 2016
  5. giradman

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    Knife Gallery - Bowie Knife or Arkansas Toothpick!

    Within the Historic Arkansas Museum is the Knife Gallery - see first quote below from the link. The main emphasis is on Jim Bowie (see second quote), the legendary frontiersman who was killed at the Alamo in 1836; he was a renowned 'knife fighter' and his name is given to a wide variety of LARGE knives, hence the 'Bowie Knife' - his original one was made by the blacksmith, James Black in Washington, Arkansas (now just up I-30 from Texarkana) - there is a huge collection of knives in the gallery, many of which would be described as of the Bowie style.

    However, there are other older and more modern knives - this is the home of the American Bladesmith Society - see the interesting video below (narrated by the director of the museum, Bill Worthen; about 12 minutes) - the images below show various portions of the gallery, pics of Black & Bowie, and others of interest, including the modern bladesmith, Gil Hibben - finally, there is a film about Bowie called The Iron Mistress (1952) starring Alan Ladd (an Arkansas native) and Virginia Mayo - have not seen the movie in years, but love the photo w/ him and his 'modern made' Bowie knife. Dave :)


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  6. scifan57

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    Thanks for the fascinating look into Arkansas history.
     
  7. giradman

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    Yep - thought that you might like the Knife & Jim Bowie discussion - fascinating state that is likely under-appreciated. Dave :)
     
  8. scifan57

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    I've seen the Jim Bowie exhibit at the Alamo. I believe one of his knives was on display.
     
  9. giradman

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    Attractions Missed in Little Rock - Maybe Next Time?

    There are many other attractions in Little Rock and the environs, but two missed that I wanted to see are the Governor's Mansion, which opened in 1950 - before that time there was not a permanent residence for the Governor and his family. Tours can be arranged which we wanted to do but just not enough time. My sister-in-law in Hot Springs worked for a state college and in that position was been invited to the mansion many times - just 2 pics below.

    Another one missed (closed on Mondays) was the Arkansas Arts Center - the museum contains both permanent and many traveling exhibits - just 2 pics added - SO, for those reading the thread who may be visiting Little Rock, these places might be interest. Dave :)
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  10. giradman

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    Every time I've been to San Antonio (probably a half dozen), I've visit the Alamo each time - Dave :)

    P.S. well the last few posts have ended our recent visit to Little Rock, BUT I've been to Arkansas over many decades and have many other experiences, so might just add additional comments.
     

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