Here are some facts about Arkansas that might be fun to know before you visit.

I wouldn’t try to write a school report from this list of facts about Arkansas. There is nothing comprehensive here – just some totally random and interesting Arkansas facts.

You might even surprise the locals with your knowledge!

I also have a list of funny town names in Arkansas that you might enjoy as well as a list of the state symbols in Arkansas.

A map of the US featuring the state of Arkansas. Facts about Arkansas.

Table of Contents

Facts About Arkansas

What is the postal code for Arkansas?

I’m starting with this one because I see SO many people get it wrong.

The postal code for Arkansas is AR…

not AK.

Alaska is AK. Arkansas is AR.

How do you pronounce Arkansas?

One of the facts about Arkansas that you really NEED to know is that the name of the state is pronounced Ar-kan-saw.

The “S” on the end is silent, y’all.

How did Arkansas get its name?

The name is the French pronunciation of a Native American word. French explorers called the Quapaw Indians who lived in the area “The Arkansas.”

This explains the silent “S” in the pronunciation of the name.

If you know anything about the French language you will know that the French have a great love of silent letters.

Then Why is Kansas pronounced Kan-zuhs?

Kansas is pronounced Kan-zuhs because this is the English pronunciation.

Supposedly the French pronunciation is the closest to the original word used by the Native Americans.

Want to hear a “dad joke” about the name Arkansas?

  • Dad: Did you know that our state is in the Bible?
  • Child: No
  • Dad: Yes, it’s in the book of Genesis.
  • Child: Really?
  • Dad: Yes, remember? Noah looked out of the Ark and saw.

What do people from Arkansas call themselves?

Arkansans.

Are there any weird laws in Arkansas

As a matter of fact, yes.

Since we have been talking about the name of the state you might want to be aware that it is illegal to mispronounce Arkansas while you are in the state.

So, if you are wanting to call Arkansas – Arkansass. You might want to wait until you are across state lines.

Cheese dip was invented in Arkansas in 1932 and is still considered a delicacy of the state!

The World Cheese Dip Championship is even held in Arkansas.

Lost Forty is one of the best breweries in Little Rock

What are some other foods that were invented in Arkansas?

Besides cheese dip here are some other foods that were invented or produced in Arkansas.

  • Cavender’s Greek seasoning: Cavender’s has been made in the Ozark Mountains since 1969
  • Cheese filled hot dogs were created in Little Rock at the Finkbeiner Meat Packing Company in 1956
  • Chocolate gravy is attributed to being a creation of the people from the Arkansas Ozarks.
  • The grape soda, Grapette, was invented and is produced in Malvern, Arkansas.
  • Meyer’s Bakery invented brown-and-serve rolls in the 1930’s in Arkansas.

Are there alligators in Arkansas?

Yes, as a matter of fact there are alligators in Arkansas.

They aren’t in every body of water like they are in Florida and you aren’t likely to see them unless you seek them out but alligators do live in the southern part of the state.

alligators in arkansas

How about another weird law regarding those alligators?

If you really love alligators then one of the important facts about Arkansas to know is that It is illegal to keep an alligator in your bathtub in the state.

Seems like a good law to me but this news could be a disappointment to alligator lovers.

Are there bears in Arkansas?

Yes, there are black bears in Arkansas and their population is growing.

What is the Capitol of Arkansas?

Little Rock is the capitol of Arkansas

How did Little Rock get its name?

The city of Little Rock was named for a rock formation on the south side of the Arkansas River that was used as a landmark for river boat traffic.

In the past the rock wasn’t actually all that small. However, It was called the “little” rock in order to differentiate it from the “big” rock on the north side of the river.

The City of Little Rock. One of the interesting facts about Arkansas is that the capitol city was named after a small rock formation along the Arkansas River.

Does the little rock still exist?

Part of it does! You can see it on the banks of the Arkansas River in downtown Little Rock.

What is the state bird of Arkansas?

The state bird of Arkansas is the Mockingbird.

What is the nickname of Arkansas?

The Natural State is the nickname of Arkansas. You can learn more about the nicknames of Arkansas through the years in this post. Some of them are pretty interesting.

Why is Arkansas called The Natural State?

Arkansas is called the natural state because of its abundance of streams, hot springs, clear lakes, swamps, and forests.

Some of the best facts about Arkansas regarding nature are:

  • Arkansas has over 600,000 acres of lakes
  • Arkansas has 9,700 miles of streams and rivers.
  • More than 1/2 of the state is forested.

What about diamonds in Arkansas?

Speaking of the natural state…Arkansas is the only state in the USA where you can find a diamond field.

It is the only place in the US where the public can go to dig for diamonds.

It is also has the only place in the US where you can not only search for diamonds, but also keep the diamonds that you might find.

Where do you dig for diamonds in Arkansas?

You can dig for diamonds at Crater of Diamonds State Park near Murfreesboro, Arkansas.

The field is the eroded surface of what was once a volcanic pipe. (basically an underground volcano)

You get to dig in the dirt for gems and diamonds and can keep anything you find. In fact the motto of the park is, “You find it. You keep it. No matter how valuable it is.”

33,100 diamonds have been found by park visitors since the Crater of Diamonds became an Arkansas state park in 1972.

Where was the largest diamond unearthed in the US found?

The largest diamond in the US was found in Arkansas, of course. The diamond was found at the site of the Crater of Diamonds State Park long before it became a state park.

It was 40.23 carats and was named the Uncle Sam Diamond.

What is the highest point in the state?

Mount Magazine is the highest point in the state at 2,753 feet.

What about sports in Arkansas?

One of the facts about Arkansas that you really need to know before you visit is that this is a state that takes college sports VERY seriously.

The state of Arkansas does not have any major league teams.

The Razorbacks from the University of Arkansas are the favorite team in basically every sport for the majority of the state.

The love of the Razorbacks runs deep.

Which State had the first female Senator in the US to serve a full term?

In 1932, Arkansas elected Hattie Caraway to the Senate. She was the first women to serve a full term as a United States Senator and she served for 14 years.

She was also the first woman to chair a Senate committee.

This is one of the facts about Arkansas that I love!

Why are there glass chapels in Arkansas?

There are three glass chapels in Arkansas that are the design of the famous architect E. Fay Jones.

The most famous of the three chapels is Thorncrown Chapel in Eureka Springs.

Thorncrown was voted by the American Institute of Architects as the fourth most notable building in the US of the 20th century.

That’s a pretty big honor for a small chapel in a small town in a small state!

Thorncrown chapel - one of the glass chapels in arkansas

Are there “monsters” in Arkansas?

The most famous of the monster legends in The Natural State is that of the Fouke Monster. This monster is also called the Boggy Creek Monster.

He is basically a southern Big Foot.

The Fouke Monster is said to be somewhat humanoid in shape but much bigger and hairier and with arms that hang almost to the ground. He is also supposed to smell worse than a skunk.

Sightings began back in the 1940’s and continued into the 70’s. A couple of low budget films about the monster have kept the legend alive.

What are the Dover Lights?

The Dover lights are mysterious and unexplained lights that appear in a valley in the Ozark mountains near the town of Dover, Arkansas. The lights can be seen from a nearby overlook.

Many people in the area have seen the lights and a local television station even caught them on camera in 2015.

However, no one seems to know what they are or what causes the lights.

Where is the only purse museum in the US?

The Esse Purse Museum is the only museum of its kind in the US and only one of two in the world!

It is located in the capitol city of Little Rock in the up and coming SOMA (south main) neighborhood.

Esse Purse Museum in SoMa Little Rock

Where is the American Taekwondo Association National Headquarters.

In Little Rock, Arkansas

What is the state instrument of Arkansas?

The fiddle is the state instrument of Arkansas.

Where is the Folk Music Capitol of the World?

Mountain View, Arkansas is the Folk Music Capitol of the World.

You might think that this is a big claim for such a small town. However, a visit to Mountain View will show you the truth of their declaration.

They have music on the square, on porches, in front of the courthouse, and in gazebos.

If the weather is middlin’ to good you will get to experience some of the best pickin’ and fiddlin’ that you have ever heard.

Where is the World Championship Duck Calling Contest held?

The World Championship Duck Calling Contest is held in Stuttgart, Arkansas.

Arkansas is one of the top states in the US for duck hunting. The town of Stuttgart is famous for its large population of ducks.

What town is the Watermelon Capitol of the World?

Hope, Arkansas is the watermelon capitol of the world.

It was also the birthplace of Bill Clinton.

Which state had the first designated national river?

One of my favorite facts about Arkansas was that the Buffalo River in the Ozark Mountains was the first national river ever established.

It became a national river in 1972 and is also one of the few un-dammed, free flowing rivers in the lower 48 states.

The Buffalo River in Arkansas. One of the interesting facts about Arkansas is that the Buffalo River was the first national river in the US

Who is the number 1 producer of rice in the US?

Arkansas is the top producer of rice in the USA. The rice from Arkansas accounts for 49% of all the rice produced in the country.

What is the most famous business from Arkansas.

This is probably one of the most well known facts about Arkansas.

Sam Walton opened his first Walmart store in the city of Rogers, Arkansas in 1967.

An old postcard or maybe postage stamp features hot springs arkansas. Facts about Arkansas.

I hope that you enjoyed this list of random facts about Arkansas! My home state is a fun and fascinating place.

We have a fun post that will tell you the best songs about Arkansas.

Here is some more information about the best time of year to visit Arkansas!

Thanks for stopping by.

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