The Prairie Grove battle reenactment occurs in early December biennially on each even-numbered year.
Conflict touches lives. During the Civil War, Arkansas played a major role in the Trans-Mississippi Theater as the North tried to hold Missouri in the Union and cut off Texas from the south. Walk the fields and streets where Arkansas Civil War battles unfolded, revisit the soul of the past, and learn valuable lessons for the future.
Washington, Arkansas, was a hotbed of Southern sympathizers and a major center of commerce in southwest Arkansas during the Civil War. Notable generals and lawmakers came from Washington, and the town's 1836 courthouse served as the Confederate capitol of the state in the last years of the Civil War. A National Historic Landmark and National Register of Historic Places site, the town of Washington today is one of America's premier 19th-century restoration towns.
Though Jacksonport never hosted any Arkansas Civil War Battles, this river port was a strategic control point for the White and Black rivers. Because of its, this river port was a strategic control point for the White and Black rivers. Because of this crucial location, at the confluence of these major water routes, the town of Jacksonport changed hands several times during the conflict. At the end of the war, General Jeff Thompson, "Swamp Fox of the Confederacy," surrendered over 5,000 troops at Jacksonport.
Identified by the American Battlefield Protection Program as one of the most intact Civil War battlefields in the nation, Prairie Grove provides a view of a major Civil War battle site just as Union and Confederate troops saw it during a day of fierce fighting on December 7, 1862. Prairie Grove is among the most famous Civil War battles in Arkansas. Exhibits and artifacts in the park's Hindman Hall museum interpret and detail the Battle of Prairie Grove. The interactive exhibits share stories about the battle, how the landscape affected and shaped the strategic decisions made by both armies, and the Civil War's devastating local effect. The stories of this last battle for the highland route to Missouri are also brought to life along the park's walking tours and driving tours, during monthly events, and at a dramatic reenactment of the battle held biennially on even numbered years.