Famous Arkansan: Sonora Louise Smart

Several well-known people have roots in Arkansas. The list runs the gamut from Johnny Cash to Jermain Taylor.
Check here as we highlight a new Famous Arkansan each month
. Today, Meet: Sonora Louise Smart


Father’s Day is today and this month’s famous Arkansan has a strong tie to the day. Sonora Louise Smart (1882-1978) is a Jenny Lind (Sebastian County) native credited with creating the holiday.
The holiday was first observed in Spokane, Washington, in 1910 where she and her family then lived. Dodd wanted a special day to honor her father, William Smart, an Arkansas farmer and widower, who raised six children by himself. (He also was a member of The First Arkansas Light Artillery which was organized at Fort Smith and fought in the battle of Pea Ridge in 1862.)
It wasn’t until 1966 when President Lyndon Johnson signed a presidential proclamation declaring the third Sunday of June as Father’s Day. In 1972 President Nixon established the permanent national observance of the holiday. The holiday is also celebrated worldwide.

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