Marker Logo HMdb.org THE HISTORICAL
MARKER DATABASE
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Near Black Rock in Randolph County, Arkansas — The American South (West South Central)
 

Courthouse Square

 

— Davidsonville Historic State Park —

 
Courthouse Square Marker image. Click for full size.
By Mark Hilton, April 3, 2021
1. Courthouse Square Marker
Inscription.  
Courthouse Architecture
Prominently placed in the center of the town square sat the Lawrence County Courthouse. Although no illustration of the courthouse has been found, research indicates it was built on a plan commonly used in the Missouri Ozarks—a brick building, two stories high on a stone foundation, with a hipped roof, cupola, and central entry. The Davidsonville Courthouse was 24 feet by 32 feet in size. The first floor was paved with double-size bricks. Money to construct the courthouse and a jail probably came from the sale of a portion of land, usually donated by the government for that purpose.

Builders and Materials
Skilled stonemasons, bricklayers, and carpenters probably were hired to direct the work, but the work crew was likely made up of enslaved Africans whose time was leased or donated by local planters. Bricks and mortar were made on-site from locally available materials, and the limestone blocks of the foundation were quarried nearby. Lumber, hardware, and glass were shipped in by river boat.

County and Public Business
County business was

"Ghost" Courthouse Square structure and marker (on left). image. Click for full size.
By Mark Hilton, April 3, 2021
2. "Ghost" Courthouse Square structure and marker (on left).
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conducted in the courthouse, as well as on and around the square. Besides courtrooms, the courthouse held the offices of county officials, such as the county clerk. On or near the courthouse square sat the jail and the land office. When not serving official duties, rooms in the courthouse could be used for public functions and meetings. The square also served as public space for the community, where people gathered to bid on auction items, listen to political speeches, and share celebrations.

Photo captions:
Top right: Archeological excavations at the Courthouse revealed a floor of double bricks on top of a dolomite foundation.
Bottom left: The Puzzled Witness (Artist: George Caleb Bingham, 1874.
 
Erected by the State of Arkansas.
 
Topics. This historical marker is listed in this topic list: Notable Places. A significant historical year for this entry is 1874.
 
Location. 36° 9.271′ N, 91° 3.373′ W. Marker is near Black Rock, Arkansas, in Randolph County. Marker can be reached from Arkansas Route 166 0.6 miles south of Arkansas Route 361 when traveling south. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 8047 Hwy 166 S, Pocahontas AR 72455, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Oldest Town Site in Arkansas (here, next to this marker); County Seat Town (here, next to this marker); Davidsonville's Courthouse

Courthouse Square Marker on left. image. Click for full size.
By Mark Hilton, April 3, 2021
3. Courthouse Square Marker on left.
(a few steps from this marker); Archeology Uncovers the Past (within shouting distance of this marker); Decline and Abandonment (within shouting distance of this marker); Public House (within shouting distance of this marker); County Jail (within shouting distance of this marker); House Lots (within shouting distance of this marker). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Black Rock.
 
Also see . . .  Encyclopedia of Arkansas article about Davidsonville Historic State Park. (Submitted on April 12, 2021, by Mark Hilton of Montgomery, Alabama.)
 
Map showing Public Square and park trails. image. Click for full size.
By Mark Hilton, April 12, 2021
4. Map showing Public Square and park trails.
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on April 13, 2021. It was originally submitted on April 12, 2021, by Mark Hilton of Montgomery, Alabama. This page has been viewed 35 times since then. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on April 12, 2021, by Mark Hilton of Montgomery, Alabama.

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May. 15, 2021