Places at the First Fort Smith (1817-1824)

The need to establish peace between the Osage and Cherokee led to the establishment of Fort Smith on the confluence of the Arkansas and Poteau Rivers.

  • Site chosen by Major Stephen H. Long of the Topographical Engineers
  • Fort Smith was established on December 25, 1817
  • Commander was Major William Bradford
  • Visited by famous English naturalist Thomas Nuttall
  • Name after General Thomas Smith, Commander of U.S. Army Rifle Regiment
  • Abandoned in 1824
  • Archeologists uncovered the foundations we see today in the late 1950s

Artist drawing of First Fort Smith
Artist drawing of First Fort Smith
Foundation of First Fort Smith
Foundation of the first Fort Smith


Last updated: August 28, 2017

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301 Parker Ave
Fort Smith, AR 72901


479 783-3961

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