Fort Smith National Historic Site
|Fort Smith National Historic Site|
IUCN category V (protected landscape/seascape)
Part of historic Fort Smith
|Location||Sebastian County, Arkansas & Sequoyah County, Oklahoma, USA|
|Nearest city||Fort Smith, Arkansas|
|Area||75 acres (30 ha)|
|Established||September 13, 1961|
|Visitors||86,122 (in 2011)|
|Governing body||National Park Service|
|Designated:||October 15, 1966|
|Designated:||December 19, 1960|
Fort Smith National Historic Site is a United States National Historic Site located primarily in Fort Smith, Arkansas along the Arkansas River, and also along the opposite bank of the river near Moffett, Oklahoma.
The site was established in 1961 in order to protect the remains of two 19th-century U.S. military forts, including a building which once housed the United States District Court for the Western District of Arkansas. Fort Smith was also notable as a major stop along the "Trail of Tears." It was designated a National Historic Landmark in 1960.
The park visitor center is now located in the old Barracks/Courthouse/Jail building. Exhibits in the visitor center focus on Fort Smith’s military history from 1817–1871, western expansion, Judge Isaac Parker and the federal court's impact on Indian Territory, U.S. Deputy Marshals and outlaws, Federal Indian policy, and Indian Removal including the Trail of Tears.
Located on the grounds are the foundation remains of the first Fort Smith (1817–1824), the commissary building (c. 1838) and a reconstruction of the gallows used by the federal court. A walking trail along the Arkansas River includes wayside exhibits on the Trail of Tears.
- "Fort Smith". National Historic Landmark summary listing. National Park Service. 2007-09-26.
- Frank B. Sarls, Jr. (December 10, 1958) National Survey of Historic Sites and Buildings: Fort Smith (First and Second Sites) and Judge Parker Courtroom, National Park Service and Accompanying 4 photos, exterior, from 1940 and undated.
- Official site: Fort Smith National Historic Site