Study Aides for the "Sulphur Fork Factory, 1817-1822"

Article from the Arkansas Historical Quarterly

Essay Questions for Sulphur Fork Factory

1. What were the purposes of the Indian factory system? What unique purposes did the Sulphur Fork Factory have?

2. Why was the location of a factory moved from Natchitoches to the Sulphur River?

3. What advantageous geographical features determined where the Sulphur Fork Factory was set up?

4. John Fowler faced many problems in operating the Sulphur Fork Factory. What was the most difficult problem?

5. Why was the Indian factory system ended?


Multiple Choice Questions for Sulphur Fork Factory

1. Which of these men established the Sulphur Fork Factory?
a. John Fowler b. William McClellan c. Oriley Cotton d. Epaphras Chapman
e. Richard Wartenby
2. Soldiers paid to help build Sulphur Fork Factory were paid $0.29 a day plus a gill of whiskey. A gill is a:
a. pint b. cup c. quart d. half gallon e. four fluid ounces
3. Which of these was not a problem in operating the Sulphur Fork Factory?
a. illegal white traders and hunters who cheated Indians b. Spanish intrigues c. poor merchandise
d. insufficient and undisciplined military garrison e. frequent Indian attacks on the factory
4. The largest trade in furs at Sulphur Fork was
a. deer skins b. beaver furs c. bear skins d. racoon skins e. otter skins
5. Ironically, the Sulphur Fork Factory was in greatest physical danger from
a. Indian attacks b. break-ins by U.S. soldiers c. Spanish invaders d. illegal white traders and hunters who sought to burn down its buildings e. wild buffalo herds


Activity for Sulphur Fork Factory


Following John Fowler

Obtain a large-scale map at Louisiana that shows in detail the course of the Red River. Trace John Fowler's likely route in 1818 up the Red River in a keelboat on his way to establish the Sulphur Fork Factory. It took him 25 days to go from Natchitoches to his destination where the Sulphur River joins the Red River. Assuming an equal distance traveled on the river each day, plot on the map the likely locations where Fowler might have stopped and camped overnight.