About Texarkana

History of Texarkana

Texarkana was founded in 1873 on the junction of two railroads. The name is a portmanteau of TEXas, ARKansas, and nearby LouisiANA. There is debate on how this name was selected. One tradition tells of a Red River steamboat named The Texarkana, circa 1860. Another story mentions a storekeeper named Swindle in Red Land, Louisiana who concocted a drink called "Texarkana Bitters". A third account states that Col. Gus Knobel, a railroad surveyor, coined the name. Local lore suggests that, before Texas' annexation by the US, lawlessness ruled in the area that at times was claimed by various nations.

In 1876, Texarkana, Texas, was granted a charter under an act of the Texas legislature, and a Texarkana, Texas, post office operated from 1886 to 1892. Later, Congressman John Morris Sheppard (D-TX) secured a postal order officially changing the name to "Texarkana, Arkansas-Texas".


In the last few years Texarkana has developed very quickly, and a vast array of new stores and services have opened. Land along I-30 has been cleared between the Richmond road exit and the Nash exit to allow new businesses to be built and other businesses to expand. A multitude of national chain restaurants also have been added over the last few years. As of October 2010, multiple highway projects are in progress to expand area highways and relieve strain on the Richmond Rd. and Summerhill Rd. exits. Continuous access roads, expanded bridges, and a new I-30/US 59 interchange are under construction. I-49 is being extended from Shreveport, with a future extension planned to Kansas City in the US 71 corridor.

According to Forbes, Texarkana is predicted to increase 28.57% in GMP by 2012 making Texarkana the second fastest growing small metro area in the country. Texarkana is a regional hub for cities in southwest Arkansas, northeast Texas, northwest Louisiana, and southeast Oklahoma.

Major Area Employers

Bolls Distributing Company


CHRISTUS St.Michael Health System

Collom & Carney Clinic

Cooper Tire & Rubber

Day & Zimmermann INC

Domtar, Inc

E-Z Mart Stores

International Paper

Ledwell & Son Enterprises

Liberty Eylau ISD

Pleasant Grove ISD

Red River Army Depot & Tenets

Texarkana College

Texarkana Gazette

City of Texarkana, AR

City of Texarkana, TX

Texarkana, TX ISD

Texarkana Arkansas School District 

TEXAS A&M-Texarkana 

Truman Arnold Company


Valor Telecom

Wadley Regional Medical


About Texarkana, Arkansas

Texarkana, AR is the largest city and the county seat of Miller County, Arkansas. It effectively functions as one half of a city which crosses a state line — the other half, the city of Texarkana, Texas, lies on the other side of State Line Avenue. While the population is growing in Texarkana, the city still ranks as number 13 in size for Arkansas. The population in Texarkana, Arkansas increased from more than 26,000 in 2000 to nearly 30,000 in 2010. Arkansas residents whose permanent residence is within the city limits of Texarkana, Arkansas are exempt from Arkansas individual income taxes.

Texarkana is a transportation hub, located between Dallas-Ft.Worth, Little Rock, Shreveport-Bossier City, Northwest Arkansas, and Houston. Coming to Texarkana will be the new four-year campus of Texas A&M University-Texarkana and Southern Arkansas University Tech-Texarkana. Texarkana is the fastest growing city in Northeast Texas and in southern Arkansas. Texarkana, AR is one of three cities south of the Little Rock area growing in southern Arkansas.

Texarkana Facts

  • Consists of two separate municipal designations:
    • Texarkana, Arkansas, the county seat of Miller County, Arkansas
    • Texarkana, Texas, located in Bowie County, Texas
  • State Line Avenue follows the Texas-Arkansas state line throughout much of Texarkana.
  • The two "sides" of Texarkana are separate only from a political standpoint. Thousands of locals actually live in one state and work in the other.
  • Has two mayors and two sets of city officials.
  • The two sides share a federal building, courthouse, jail, post office, labor office, chamber of commerce, water utility, and several other offices. .

About TASD

The Texarkana Arkansas School District (TASD) is a U.S. school district serving Texarkana, Arkansas. It is district No. 7, and is part of Miller County, Arkansas. TASD7 established itself as a magnet school system in 2005 at the elementary and middle school levels and later expanded its magnet school program to include North Heights Jr. High and Arkansas High School in 2006.

TASD also recently joined in partnership with the University of Arkansas Community College at Hope, offering Texarkana students another choice for higher education. General education courses will be offered in the evening hours on the campus of Arkansas High School to keep students on track toward completion with help from college staff and faculty. By joining in this partnership, TASD and UACCH hope to remove some of the obstacles that make it difficult for working adults, tradition and nontraditional students and high school students in Miller County to pursue college coursework. The partnership is founded on a shared commitment to the educational needs of the communities. For more information about TASD and the UACCH partnership, call 870-722-8228 or 870-722-8174, or visit uacch.edu

The Texarkana Regional Arts and Humanities Council and the Texarkana Arkansas School District are members of the Partners in Education program of the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts. Selected because of their demonstrated commitment to the improvement of education in and through the arts, the Partnership Team participates in collaborative efforts to provide professional development opportunities in the arts for educators.

Did you know?

Arkansas High School had the "original" Razorback mascot before the University of Arkansas in Fayetteville. The University of Arkansas student body voted to change the name of the school mascot (originally the Cardinals) in 1910 to the Arkansas Razorbacks. Since the Razorback name was already in use by the Texarkana Arkansas High School Razorbacks, the University agreed to 'use' the Razorback logo as their mascot; In turn, giving Arkansas High School used athletic equipment from the university - a practice that no longer exists.

Notables from Texarkana, AR

  • Brad Cherry, Cincinnati Reds baseball minor league relief pitcher
  • Mike Cherry, New York Giants football, Murray State quarterback
  • Lynn A. Davis, lecturer, crime author, former politician
  • Martin Delray, country music singer
  • Kathy Hillis, Big Brother 12 Houseguest
  • Mike Huckabee, Governor of Arkansas; Pastor of Beech Street First Baptist Church from 1986 to 1992.
  • Parnelli Jones, 1963 Indianapolis 500 champion
  • Jeff Keith, former lead singer of the rock band Tesla
  • A. Lynn Lowe, farmer and former Arkansas Republican Party State Chairman and 1978 gubernatorial nominee against Bill Clinton.
  • Hayes McClerkin, attorney, former Speaker of the Arkansas House of Representatives, 1970 gubernatorial candidate.
  • Dustin Moseley, Major League Baseball player -San Diego Padres - MLB
  • Conlon Nancarrow, composer who specialized in works for player pianos.
  • A. T. Powers, Missionary Baptist clergymen resided in Texarkana from 1948 to 1952 and again in 1961 until his death in 1975.
  • SSG Denver "Bull" Randleman, World War II veteran, portrayed in the HBO mini series, Band of Brothers.
  • Don Rogers, American football player with the Cleveland Browns in the NFL
  • Sarah Huckabee Sanders, White House Press Secretary
  • Rod Smith, American football player with the Denver Broncos in the NFL
  • William "Curly" Smith, drummer and harmonicist for Boston and Jo Jo Gunne
  • Willie Davis – Pro Football Hall of Fame, Green Bay Packers
  • Eric Warfield - Pro football, Kansas City Chiefs
  • Scott Joplin - Ragtime Composer including "The Entertainer" from the movie, "The Sting"


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