There are many exhibits, features, and other noteworthy items/places available to view and experience at the Fort Smith National Historic Site, but depending on your schedule and interest, you may only have time for a brief visit. Based on experience from both current and past visitors as well as front desk employees and Rangers, this guide could help you see everything you want to see in the time you have available.
If you have less than one hour:
- Tour the building, which includes:Two Jails, Judge Parker's Court Room, Exhibits on theU.S. Deputy Marshals, the Military,Outlaws, andTrail of Tears.
- Visit the Gallows.
- Browse the Eastern National Book Store
If you have one to three hours:
- Attend a Ranger-led program.
- Take a walking tour using Audio Wands of both the building and the grounds. [Available for free at the Front Desk]
- Walk the grounds and read our Wayside Information Panels.
- Take a short walk up to Belle Point and visit the first Fort Smith site.
- Walk along the Arkansas River and view the Trail of Tears overlook.
- Enjoy a picnic under one of the many shade trees or on one of our picnic tables located next to the main parking lot.
- Kids can earn their Junior Ranger badges by completing activities in our fun and educational workbooks.
- Visit the Commissary Storehouse, Fort Smith's oldest building.
- Watch the beautiful sunsets on Belle Point overlooking the confluence of the Arkansas and Poteau Rivers.
- Watch It Took Brave Men U.S. Deputy Marshal Video.
- See what is growing in the Historic Officer's Garden.