Johnson County Community Links
Johnson County was established in 1833 in the Northwest region of the state of Arkansas. The county got its name from the first Territorial Judge of Arkansas, Judge Benjamin Johnson. Johnson County covers over 650 square miles and has a population of 26,141 (U.S. Census, 2015.)
Clarksville has been the county seat since 1837 when land was donated to the county by Josiah Cravens. Before then, the county seat was located on the Arkansas River in the town of Spadra at the home of one of the pioneers of the county, Elijah Alston.
The county offers many natural characteristics, including thickly forested landscape, streams, rivers, and lowland bottom lands. Some of the more notable of these features include a portion of the Boston and Mulberry Mountains, the Ozark-St. Francis National Forest, and the creeks/rivers: Horsehead, Little Piney, Mulberry, Spadra, Arkansas, and Big Piney. Within our county can be found twenty-eight locations listed on the National Register of Historic Places, including a Missouri-Pacific depot in Clarksville; the McKennon House, designed by architect Charles L. Thompson; and the Big Piney Creek Bridge (Koenig, 2013)
The University of the Ozarks is a Liberal Arts Presbyterian university located in Clarksville, and has a rich history of its own. Originally known as Arkansas Cumberland College, it opened its doors on September 7, 1891. The name was later changed to the College of the Ozarks (1920) and held this name until 1987 when it became the University of the Ozarks.
The county has a rich agricultural history as well. Originally, cotton was the primary crop, but later fruit crops became the most prominent agriculture in the county. Some of these crops include apples, peaches, and pears. Today you can still find orchards of apples and peaches that are family run and open for the public to get fresh fruit from the trees for a nominal charge.
The Johnson County Chamber of Commerce is a great place to start to learn more about, and events taking place, in our community.
The Department of Emergency Management (JCDEM) plays an important role in our community. Several life saving groups fall directly under the supervision of the JCDEM.
Did you know that Johnson County has an emergency notification system in place? You can sign up to receive a text, e-mail, and/or a phone call whenever there is an emergency in your area. Simply go to the CodeRed warning alert system page and sign up with the information requested. You will have to sign up to receive these alerts. Alerts can be for such events as severe weather, flooding, evacuations, etc.
The Johnson County Community Farmers' Marketis a collection of local farmers that help to provide fresh, affordable, produce, crafts, meats, and other nutritious items for the people of Johnson County.
Have any suggestions on other community organizations you would like to see on page? Go to our home page and send us an e-mail with the information.
ANNUAL FISHING DERBY AT CLINE PARK IN CLARKSVILLE
5th Grade Class at Kraus Elementary School
JOHNSON COUNTY CONSERVATION DISTRICT
Each year right before the school year ends, the fifth grade class from Kraus Elementary School comes out to Cline Park to enjoy a day of fishing and learning.
The Arkansas Game and Fish Commission brings about 250 catfish and puts them in the pond. They also supply nice prizes for the derby.
Some of the students have never fished, so they get to enjoy learning with the help of many volunteers. There are always lots of parents, grandparents, teachers, city employees and others who come out to help with this event.
There are prizes given for largest catfish, smallest catfish, most catfish etc.
There are learning stations for the students to rotate through when they are not fishing. We have had snakes, hides and skulls, boat safety, natural foods, tree idea, and others, with lots of people donating their time to teach the students.
The students in the lower grades always look forward to when they get to participate in the fishing derby, and previous students often will come out and help as well.
The History of Johnson County