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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”

Fort Smith in Sebastian County, Arkansas — The American South (West South Central)
 

The Flagstaff

Fort Smith National Historic Site

 

— National Park Service, U.S. Department of the Interior —

 
The Flagstaff Marker image. Click for full size.
By Denise Boose, July 13, 2012
1. The Flagstaff Marker
Inscription.  The U.S. Army built the original flagstaff at the second Fort Smith in 1846. As with many western military posts, the flagstaff stood tall so that its flag could be seen for miles. To attain a height of nearly 100 feet, the army joined two poles in the same way that ship masts were built. Historically, shroud lines attached to cross trees supported the area where the poles were joined, while guidelines and an underground wooden structure stabilized the base.

When the army closed Fort Smith in 1871, they removed the flagstaff. The “Old Fort Militia,” a local citizen support group, in cooperation with the National Park Service rebuilt the flagstaff in 1984-85. Its 37-star flag is a replica of the last flag flown here by the army, from 1867-1871.
 
Erected by National Park Service, U.S. Department of the Interior.
 
Topics. This historical marker is listed in this topic list: Military.
 
Location. 35° 23.329′ N, 94° 25.764′ W. Marker is in Fort Smith, Arkansas, in Sebastian County. Marker is on Parker
The Flagstaff Marker image. Click for full size.
By Denise Boose, July 13, 2012
2. The Flagstaff Marker
Avenue, on the left when traveling north. Located in Fort Smith National Historic Site National Park. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 301 Parker Avenue, Fort Smith AR 72901, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. The Women’s Jail, 1872-1888 (a few steps from this marker); The Guardhouse, 1849-1871 (within shouting distance of this marker); The Parade Grounds (within shouting distance of this marker); Old Federal Building (within shouting distance of this marker); The Bastion That Never Was (within shouting distance of this marker); Meeting of Nations (within shouting distance of this marker); Clues from the Past (within shouting distance of this marker); Deputy U.S. Marshal Bass Reeves (within shouting distance of this marker). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Fort Smith.
 
The Flagstaff Marker image. Click for full size.
By Denise Boose, July 13, 2012
3. The Flagstaff Marker
The second Fort Smith ca. 1850, with the flagstaff in the center of the parade ground. Note the stone wall defining the perimeter of the fort. Of all the buildings shown, the barracks and commissary are the only buildings remaining today.
The Flagstaff Marker image. Click for full size.
By Denise Boose, July 13, 2012
4. The Flagstaff Marker
“In the center of this circle [the parade ground] stood a tall flag-staff, from which dizzy height, ‘Old Glory,’ flung its protecting folds to the breeze. Morning and evening to the salute of a cannon and the strains of martial music, the flag was raised and lowered.” -Mary Rutherford Cravens recalling “Social Life in the Garrison.”
The Flagstaff & Marker image. Click for full size.
By Denise Boose, July 13, 2012
5. The Flagstaff & Marker
The Flagstaff Marker image. Click for full size.
By Denise Boose, July 13, 2012
6. The Flagstaff Marker
The Flagstaff Marker image. Click for full size.
By Denise Boose, July 13, 2012
7. The Flagstaff Marker
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on June 12, 2020. It was originally submitted on August 14, 2012, by Denise Boose of Tehachapi, California. This page has been viewed 776 times since then. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7. submitted on August 14, 2012, by Denise Boose of Tehachapi, California. • Craig Swain was the editor who published this page.
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Mar. 6, 2021