The first European settlement in the lower Mississippi Valley region, Arkansas Post became part of the United States during the Louisiana Purchase of 1803.
By 1819, the post was a thriving river port and the largest city in the region and selected the capital of the Arkansas Territory. The park contains the January 11, 1863 Arkansas Post battlefield where vastly superior numbers of Union troops under major General John McClernand defeated Confederate defenders under Brigadier General Thomas Churchill. While Fort Hindman now lies beneath the Arkansas River, there are still remnants of Confederate trenches.
The battle, as well as the rest of Arkansas Post's rich history, is interpreted at the park museum. Tour guides are available but must be requested for in advance.
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