We took a short trip to Hot Springs, Arkansas, where the kids and Chelle enjoyed some water time, but not the famous naturally thermal spring waters for which the town is named.
The 143° F springs are probably the best known part of Hot Springs, but there is much more history than many know about.
In 1832, President Andrew Jackson basically designated Hot Springs as America’s first national park, when he named it Hot Springs Reservation. When Congress officially established the National Park Service, the area became Hot Springs National Park in 1921.
In addition to the natural beauty of the area, Hot Springs was the home of organized crime from the late 1800s through the mobster golden age of the 1930s. The federal government put a stop to most of this activity in the 1960s. If you are interested in this this aspect of life in Hot Springs, you will want to check out The Gangster Museum of America.
Our visit to Hot Springs was too short. I am hopeful we can return someday.
Little Rock, Arkansas is a wonderful vacation destination. We had a limited amount of time, so we had to pick just a few spots. We ate at a couple of local restaurants, including Big Orange burgers and Izzy's. The food at both places was very good, and they had a variety of gluten free options.
On our first day, we visited the State Capitol and drove by the Arkansas Governor's mansion. We also drove by the historic Central High School, which has ties to Kansas. It was in 1957, that nine African American students were escorted by the National Guard under the order of President Dwight D. Eisenhower into a formerly all-white school following the landmark 1954 Supreme Court decision in Brown vs. Topeka Board of Education. We visited the Little Rock Central High School National Historic Site the next day and found it interesting and informative.
We also visited the old Arkansas Statehouse, which for most Americans is probably most recognized as the site of Governor Bill Clinton's appearance following his election as President of the United States in November 1992. As mentioned in a previous post, we also spent several hours at the William J. Clinton Presidential Library and Museum.
After visiting the capital city, we decided to venture to another well-known and historic Arkansas city -- Hot Springs.
The Knapp Family writing about travel and leisure.