History of Scott County, Arkansas

In the following pages I have endeavored to pre- sent the out-standing facts of the history of Scott County. I have been impelled to do this by several reasons. First, I confess to a measurable sentiment in the matter. The county is my home, and the men and women who made this history are my homefolk. Their history is, so to speak, my own, and, therefore, a very absorbing study to me.

Again, I would hold up to the present and succeeding generations, and mirror to them, the fit examples of character, civic virtues and moral leadership displayed by our pioneer forefathers in making the history of the county what it is.

Further, it is a lamentable fact that almost every one is more familiar with State, national, and even foreign history than with the history of his own county or community. We know who the first President, the first Governor, or the first Roman, German or English ruler was, but we cannot tell who was the county's first sheriff or judge or clerk. It is the purpose of this booklet to enable the citizens of the county to know something of the early community history and the makers of this history.

An effort has been made to present an impartial and connected account of the leading facts of the County history. In this, I have been hampered by lack of complete records. The early official papers were destroyed by fire, and what other records were accessible are fragmentary and incomplete. But the facts here given are for the most part taken from the official records on file in the Federal Departments at Washington, D. C, and in the Library of Congress there. I am indebted to Mr. Dallas T. Herndon of the Arkansas History Commission for the roster of Scott men in the Civil War. Much of the atmosphere has been obtained from conversations with old settlers of the county.

In offering this brief account of some of the lead- ing facts of our local history, I am mindful of the fact that my readers will be mainly citizens of the County. 1 have kept this probability constantly in mind. I have also been conscious of the possible historical value of such a treatise and have endeavored to include as part of the subject matter only well-authenicated facts. 1 have tried to put these facts into a condensed narrative, and rigidly to refrain from comment thereon, tempting as such a course has at times been. I trust this booklet will be accepted in the spirit in which it was prepared a spirit of service to the people of the county. If this result is accomplished even only to a small degree, I shall feel that my labors have been amply repaid.

 

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In 1833, Scott County was formed, being named for Judge Andrew Scott. In addition to the region now included in the county, it also covered the townships of Boon, Washburn and Reveille, which have since (1875) been cut off and made a part of Logan County. The seat of justice was established at or near the present town of Booneville and was known as Cauthron. The county officers appointed were Elijah Baker, County Judge; S.B. Walker. Clerk; James Riley, Sheriff, and J.R. Choate, Coroner. These officials held office for a term of two years. They were succeeded in 1835 by James Logan, County Judge; Gilbert Marshall, Clerk; Charles Humphrey, Sheriff, and Walter Cauthron, Coroner. In 1836, the state government became effective by the admission of Arkansas territory as a state of the Federal Union.