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Sevier County

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October 17, 1827

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    Sevier County is Arkansas's sixteenth county, formed on October 17, 1827, and named for Ambrose Sevier, U.S. Senator from Arkansas. The territorial legislature designated the county seat in the home of Joseph English. Five appointed commissioners located the seat of justice at a spot about one mile east of the Cossatot River. The site was called Paraclifta, reputedly in honor of a Choctaw Indian chief who intervened to resolve a dispute between some Indians and white men over a horse. The first courthouse was a log building on a public square. The territorial legislature made Paraclifta the permanent seat of justice in 1831. In 1867, Little River County was created from the area between the Red and Little rivers. Paraclifta, no longer centrally located, was unsuitable as a county seat, and in 1869, it was moved to Lockesburg. An iron monument and an above-ground vault remain at Paraclifta. The railroad bypassed the county seat at Lockesburg. When a route was chosen that took the road near the settlement of Hurrah City, people moved in with tents and shanties. The town was named for Stilwell's benefactor de Goeijen, a common practice. The name was later changed to De Queen, which was easier for Americans to pronounce. De Queen was incorporated on July 9, 1897. Jan de Goeijen visited the town that bears his name on October 8, 1897, arriving in a special rail car. When he made another trip to the town on March 10, 1927, the town greeted him with a brass band. After the county quorum court voted to build a new courthouse, some De Queen merchants offered to build a $10,000 building if the people of the county would vote to move the courthouse to De Queen. In a special election in 1905, De Queen won the county seat with a margin of 150 votes.
    Joseph McKean and his wife, Lucy, arrived in 1833 on a steamboat that traveled up the Red River. McKean was elected as Sevier County's representative to the first state constitutional convention in 1836 and served two terms in the Arkansas Senate. He was the first postmaster of Ultima Thule, a settlement on the east side of the present Arkansas-Oklahoma border. As a government agent, he provided supplies for the Indians during removal.


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Arkansas Dept of Health

Arkansas Dept of Health
Division of Vital Records, Slot 44
4815 West Markham Street
Little Rock, AR 72205
(501) 661-2174
Fax: (501) 663-2832
  • Vital Records is responsible for the collection and issuance of birth and death certificates and marriage and divorce coupons.
  • Birth and death certificates serve two purposes. They are the definitive legal documents of identity and they collect important medical information about the two most important events – birth and death.
  • Marriage and divorce coupons are so called because they are removed from the bottom of marriage and divorce certificates, the original of which is retained in the offices of the county clerk of courts; these coupons contain limited information.

Arkansas State Archives

Arkansas History Commission
One Capitol Mall
Little Rock, AR 72201
The History Commission, the official state archives, is a facility in which those interested in Arkansas history may engage in research. The staff does not undertake research requests from the public. The Research Room is open from 8:00 A.M. to 4:30 P.M., Monday through Saturday. It is closed on state holidays. If you are traveling long distances, please call to confirm hours/days of operation at 501.682.6900.

Arkansas Genealogical Society

  • The purpose of the society is to promote family history research, to educate persons in genealogical research methods and the use of historical records, to publish articles pertaining to Arkansas ancestors, and to preserve and make accessible historical, genealogical, and biographical sources pertaining to Arkansas.
  • AGS has contributed to the genealogical collection of books and other materials at the Arkansas History Commission and State Archives, the Butler Center for Arkansas Studies, and at other libraries and archives with genealogical collections. Books sent to AGS to be reviewed in The Arkansas Family Historian are always donated to a library that does not possess a copy. AGS sometimes purchases and donates special resources, such as the films of the Draper Manuscripts at the Arkansas History Commission.
Circuit Clerk
115 North 3rd St.
De Queen, AR 71832
Phone (870)642-3055
County Clerk
115 North 3rd St.
DeQueen, AR 71832
Phone (870)642-2852
Sevier County Museum
717 Walter J. Leeper Drive
DeQueen, AR 71832
Karen Mills

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Adjacent Counties

Polk County | Howard County | Hempstead County | Little River County
McCurtain County, Oklahoma

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