Historical Hikes

5 Historical Hikes of Arkansas Hikers Enjoy

Hiking is a good adventure but hiking through a trail that has significance in history adds upon the excitement. There are at least 5 historical hikes in Arkansas that have such significance in history.

1. Butterfield Trail

Butterfield Trail was originally an overland mail route that was built in 1858 by John Butterfield, who was a stagecoach driver. He created this trail to link River Mississippi with the Pacific Ocean to deliver mails faster through the river than through the ocean. Lines were set up from Missouri and Memphis to Fort Smith. In 1860, Butterfield Trail was over-shadowed by the Pony Express, which was faster. The company was rendered dysfunctional due to the hostility during civil war. Butterfield Trail is now under consideration for a National Historic Trail.

2. Civil War Trails

Arkansas has eight Civil War trails that commemorate Civil War Sesquicentennial. Therefore, they are historical hikes in Arkansas. Anyone can hike along these trails and commemorate historic civil wars. A complimentary patch that is rewarded to the first one thousand motorcyclists who ride along all the eight trails adds to the excitement. The programme is valid until the complimentary patches are in stock. Interested hikers and bikers need to send an email to book themselves as a competitor.

3. Southwest Trail

Southwest Trail is not actually a single historical hike in Arkansas. It is rather a single term that is used to refer to the network of courses that connect Red River Valley in Texas and St. Louis or St. Genevieveare in Missouri. The course that became a major route for immigration in 1820 used to be a little more than just a footpath until 1818, when Arkansas gained the status of a territory. More than 4/5 of the population of Arkansas had used the Southwest Trail to enter the territory by 1830. The US Army improved the road under the presidency of Andrew Jackson.

4. Trail of Tears

The Cherokee, Chickasaw, Choctaw, Creek and Seminole tribes of Indians passed through Arkansas to Indian Territory due to their forcible removal under Indian Removal Act, which was passed by Andrew Jackson in 1830. Frauds and scams rose considerably and exploited the Act. It has been termed as the Trail of Tears to commemorate the death of hundreds of members in each Indian tribe due to diseases and hardships caused along the long trail to the Indian Territory.

5. Van Winkle Trail

The Van Winkle Trail is often mistaken by many to be named after fictitious character Rip Van Winkle. In fact, the trail is named after Peter Godwin Van Winkle, United Senator from West Virginia. The sites of mill and home of Peter Winkle can be found in the trail. Besides, there is a raised garden and a beautiful spring besides the stream for hikers to enjoy.

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