Welcome to the Old State House Museum, the original state capitol of Arkansas and the oldest surviving capitol building west of the Mississippi River. This structure was constructed in a Greek Revival style in 1833, the grounds since then seeing some of the most important events in Arkansas history.
Among the most well known events recently were the 1992 and 1996 election night celebrations for former President Bill Clinton. Historically speaking, however, this location saw the admission into the Union in 1836, a fatal Bowie knife fight between state legislators in 1837, the vote to secede from the United States in 1861, and important pioneering medical research in hookworm and malaria. A walk around these historic grounds will show your group several exciting memorials, from the Brooks Baxter War of 1874 memorial, to the first state police station home memorial, to several still standing and reused state offices.
This site didn’t actually become a museum until 1947, making this the new official site for preserving, sharing, and celebrating Arkansas history and Arkansas people. Within the museum you will find a large collection of artifacts surrounding Arkansas’ role in film and early Hollywood. Explore the exhibits covering the most famous actors/actresses from the area, such as Joey Lauren Adams, and the movies that have used this state’s gorgeous backdrop, including Gone with the Wind. You will also see exhibits on famous producers and musicians from the area. Pick up any of these popular pop culture film and music souvenirs or Arkansas artifacts at the gift shop before you go!