Arkansas Post National Memorial
In 1686, Henri de Tonti established a trading post known as "Poste de Arkansea" at the Quapaw village of Osotouy. It was the first semi-permanent French settlement in the lower Mississippi River Valley. The establishment of the Post was the first step in a long struggle between France, Spain, and England over the interior of the North American continent.
See the Visitor Center for an overview of what's in the park. Mostly, it's the kind of place to come and walk, read, and enjoy the out-doors. The evening hours find fishermen and their families arriving. If you're interested in the park, take a walk through the old capital grounds (mowed and open under the trees) to the point. At the point, you'll gaze across the Arkansas River, which literally is running the opposite direction from how the channel was in the 1860's. It is somewhere out in the water that the first townsite exists. Well, it doesn't really exist, as the lands around here have been moved and rearranged numerous times by the river.
Along the entrance road is the Civil War (Fort Hindman) pull off. The Fort, which once guarded the Arkansas River approach, stood on the banks of the River when it was built. Trenches ran across the peninsula of land formed by a bend in the River. The Union Army approached from the east (left) up the river and than marched overland to face the fort. Today, the fort is gone and Post Bayou covers the place where it once stood. Remants of the trenches are visible through the woods behind you and can be reached by a road running along the front of the trenches.