Museum Monday: The Lower White River Museum State Park

I’ve loved museums my entire life…and after working in one for 10 years, that love only grew stronger. On Mondays, I will share some of my favorite museums located within the 26 counties of eastern Arkansas.
Kimberly J. Williams  
If you’ve never visited Des Arc, you need to plan a trip sometime soon. Located on the White River, Des Arc was a thriving river town prior to the war, with the Butterfield Overland Mail route playing a major role in the development of the community.  

Steamboats were a very important part of the town’s history. The Lower White River Museum State Park in Des Arc details the important part the Lower White River played in the lives of early settlers in the area. Exhibits also focus on the Civil War, agriculture, the timber industry, pearling and button making, and fishing and hunting.

Last year, the Lower White River State Park installed a new exhibit dedicated to an “old” resident. Back in 1965, a construction crew working on Interstate 40 near Hazen stumbled upon a major archeological find – the remains (including the skull with tusks, mandibles, atlas and the majority of the vertebrae) of Mammuthus columbi, or Columbian Mammoth, buried for  centuries under more than 22 feet of red clay silt. Aptly named the Hazen Mammoth, the animal would have called the area home a few years back…according to scientists, approximately 1.8 million years ago to 10,000 years ago. Portions of the jaw (including teeth) and vertebrae are now on display at the museum.

The Lower White River Museum State Park is located at 2009 Main St. in Des Arc. For more information visit or phone 870-256-3711.

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