ARKANSAS HISTORICAL QUARTERLY, Volume 18, Autumn 1959, p. 280

 

ANTE-BELLUM SCHOOLS AT TULIP, ARKANSAS

 

BY HERSCHEL KENNON SMITH JR.

Nashville, Tennessee

 

"For it is in the great work of the advancement of learning, that you are engaged; and to this work your teachers have devoted themselves and all their energies. Here, on this beautiful ridge, among these green trees, hereafter, we hope, to become as illustrious as those of the Academy of Plato, you are preparing yourselves for the great battlefield of life. It is evident that your teachers are doing their duty well, enthusiastically, manfully. It is evident that you have earnestly striven to know well and to do well whatever you have undertaken to know and do; and so far as I have seen, and no doubt in all that I have not seen, you have done well, admirably and excellently well" (1). These words were spoken by Albert Pike. This great man, warrior, poet, and teacher, stood on the expansive drilling grounds at Tulip where he looked out upon a great concourse of people gathered for the graduation exercise of the Arkansas Military institute and the Tulip Female Collegiate Seminary. Pike delivered an eloquent and informative speech; indeed it lasted for quite some time. However such an oration was worthy of the listener's patience, for in it's context many words of wisdom were given to the youth sitting before him. The date was June 4, 1852.
 
Tulip, Arkansas was a beautiful little village in Dallas County. In 1844 Colonel Maurice Smith came to Tulip, settled and admonished his kin to follow his example. Many responded to his call. Among them were many people from the East. Generally they were cultivated people; therefore, they brought their culture and refinement to this outpost on the Arkansas frontier. Because of this type of citizenry, Tulip grew and merchants and professional men chose the place for permanent residence. The nucleus of Tulip was a long street, really the Princeton road, and on each side were business houses.
 

 

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1. Pike Speech, published in Little Rock, by William E. Woodruff, 1852, p. 1.
 

 

 

 

 

 

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