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Capitol Exhibits  

A taste of our history is represented in the fascinating quarterly exhibits at the Capitol. From seeing the actual medical instruments used in surgery in rural Arkansas to instruments used in making Ozark folk music, there's always an interesting bit of Arkansas history to see. Our quarterly exhibits are presented in four enclosed galleries on the Capitol's first floor. Permanent exhibits are located on the third and fourth floors. Be sure to stop by as a bonus to your Capitol tour!

Quarterly exhibits

Now Showing — Made Here: From Arkansas, for the World

The State Capitol's spring exhibit examines products manufactured in Arkansas, offering a look beyond the agriculture, commodities and natural resources that are familiar to most Arkansans.

Made Here: From Arkansas, for the World highlights a handful of roughly 3,000 Arkansas manufacturers whose products are made in Arkansas, destined for national and even global markets. 

During the 1950s, state and local governments began to actively court manufacturers, touting Arkansas’s work force, a favorable tax and financial climate and a location with good access to both materials and markets. The Arkansas Industrial Development Commission, created in 1955, helped “sell” Arkansas to producers.  Over time, many factories and assembly shops have closed, but others continue to open. Currently about 163,000 Arkansans work in manufacturing, and in 2012, their output was valued at nearly $16 billion.

Made Here profiles the histories of six of Arkansas’s major manufacturers, including Daisy Outdoor Products, Baldor Electric, Remington Arms, American Railcar Industries, Ranger Boats and Alliance Rubber. Images and items supplied by these companies help tell their stories and illustrate the output of their Arkansas operations.

These include small arms ammunition and components from Remington and the prototype for Daisy’s 2015 Red Ryder 75th anniversary commemorative edition airgun.  Alliance Rubber of Hot Springs has supplied what may be the exhibit’s most eye-catching single item: a dress adorned with literally thousands of varicolored rubber bands.  Across from the dress, a pair of long-bill scissors commemorates one of Twentieth-century Arkansas’s pioneering manufacturers, Solid Steel Scissors of Fort Smith. 

Made Here is located on the Capitol’s ground floor, north and south of the rotunda area.  It will remain on display through mid-May.

 

Past revolving exhibits:

Permanent Exhibits

     A Capitol in Progress 

      This exhibit, located in the Lower Level 
      elevator lobby, features rare
      photographs taken at a crucial time in
      the construction of the Arkansas State
      Capitol. The work of Little Rock
      photographer Thomas B. Rayburn, the
      image document the condition of the
      structure in 1910 as a new governor
      and a new architect took charge of the
      struggling project to guide it to
      completion.

Building Forever: The Construction Story of the Arkansas State Capitol

Featuring historical photographs, blueprints, cartoons and newspaper articles, this exhibit chronicles the construction history of the Capitol, along with a look at 20th century governors and their impact on state and national events. The exhibit is located in the northwest hallway of the third floor.

Call of Duty: Arkansas at War

Explore Arkansas’s role in Major U.S. Conflicts and discover stories about our state’s heroes. View memorials to Desert Storm and Pearl Harbor veterans. The exhibit and memorials are in the fourth floor east corridor.

Legislative Photo Composites

Looking for a relative who served in the Arkansas legislature? Composite photographs of each legislative session since 1911 are located on the third and fourth floor hallways. House of Representative composite photographs are on the north ends of the third and fourth floors; Senate photos are on the south ends of both upper floors. Photos are in chronological order with the newer photos located on the third floor and the older photographs on the fourth floor.

Mentors & Models
This exhibit highlights the lives of social justice and civil rights advocates Daisy and L.C. Bates, and the making of Testament, a monument on the Capitol grounds honoring the Little Rock Nine. It is located in the north foyer on the first floor of the State Capitol, overlooking the monument.

Standing for Arkansas

Learn the history behind the official symbols of Arkansas. Located in the west corridor of the fourth floor, this exhibit is fun for all ages.

Through the Years By the Numbers

See how the state's people and industries have changed from territorial days to today. A timeline of major events in Arkansas history is coupled with population s changes since the 1820s. The timeline and narrative depict landmark events since Europeans first explored the region in the 1500s, how Native American cultures shifted and the progression of agriculture and industry through today. Located in the southeast corner of the Capitol’s fourth floor.


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