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State Capitol Gift Shop 

The State Capitol Gift Shop is located on the first floor of the Capitol. Offering Arkansas and Arkansas made products, the Gift Shop is open Monday thru Friday from 9:00 am until 4:00 pm. For more information call 501-682-3593.

2017 Capitol Christmas Ornament

2017 Christmas Ornament

[Click Here to Purchase Capitol Christmas Ornaments]

In 1985, the 75th Arkansas General Assembly approved a measure, introduced by State Representative Art Givens, authorizing a Capitol monument honoring Arkansas’s law enforcement officers who had lost their lives in the line of duty.  Act 964 created a committee made up of representatives of law enforcement agencies, professional associations and the Secretary of State’s office, which would select a design and site for the memorial, develop criteria for inclusion and solicit and accept funds for its construction.

The project began in earnest in 1987 with announcement of a statewide design competition and fund-raising events.  Several sites were considered, including the mall due north of the Capitol, the east promenade and within the Rotunda.  Fund raising proved slow, however, and the project remained stalled for several years.

In 1993, the project was revived.  A site due south of the Capitol was approved by the Capitol Arts and Grounds Commission and an elegant, straightforward design was created by architect Chris Dimon of Burt Taggart & Associates.  Ground was broken on October 23, 1993 and the monument took shape speedily, aided by many firms supplying expertise and materials either as in-kind contributions or at cost.

The completed monument was dedicated one year later, on October 23, 1994.  It consists of a circular concrete plaza with a flagpole at its center. It is surrounded to the north by a boxwood hedge and to the south by a semicircle of 29 precast concrete plinths.  Twenty-eight of them bear black marble plaques upon which are engraved the names of Arkansas peace officers who have died in the line of duty.  One, located at the middle of the semicircle, bears an elegiac poem composed by Anita Layne Riley, widow of one whose name is found on the marble tablets.  

When the monument was dedicated, it bore 149 names; as of 2017, those remembered stands at 229.  The names are given without rank or indication of affiliation, reminding visitors that all officers were and remain equal, comrades in vocation, sacrifice, and memory. 

2016 Capitol Christmas Ornament

[Click Here to Purchase Capitol Christmas Ornaments]

On March 22, 2014, over three thousand firefighters, family members, friends and supporters gathered on the grassy mall west of Arkansas’s Capitol to take part in the dedication of the Capitol’s newest monument, the Arkansas Fallen Firefighters’ Memorial. The ceremony was the culmination of nearly two decades of work to create, fund and install a durable monument honoring Arkansas emergency responders who have perished in the line of duty.

The idea for the memorial surfaced at a fire fighters’ convention in 1985, but little progress was made until May 8, 1997, when a conflagration at a chemical plant in West Helena claimed three lives. Spurred by the tragedy, the Memorial Committee vigorously promoted the idea of the memorial. Missouri artist Robert Daus, a retired fireman, who had previously created firefighters’ monuments for St. Louis and Milwaukee, was commissioned to sculpt the oversized bronze figural group which would be the visual center of a monumental plaza. Working from drawings by Walnut Ridge artist Paula Haskins, Daus modeled representations of a Nineteenth-century volunteer fireman, a modern urban fire fighter, a rural or wild land fire fighter and the “angel of mercy,” a female emergency medical technician. The figures were cast in bronze in 2008 and were exhibited around Arkansas in a tour which both raised public awareness about the project and helped raise funds for its completion.

On March 23, 2013, the Memorial Committee, joined by families and friends of fallen firefighters, broke ground for the monument on the Capitol Mall. Over the next year, the statues’ setting, designed by Little Rock architects Brooks Jackson and Bunny Brown, took shape: a limestone amphitheater featuring a memorial wall and a pedestal fountain base, paved in white granite with a bronze maltese cross outline filled in red granite.

At the 2014 dedication, the names of 104 fallen Arkansas firefighters were read aloud; their names to be inscribed on the granite Memorial Wall tablets. Since then, other fallen heroes have been added to this roll of honor, poignant reminders of the dangers faced by emergency responders every day.

2004 - 2013 Capitol Christmas Ornaments

You can also purchase past Capitol Christmas Ornaments from 2004-2013 in the State Capitol Gift Shop or at the link below. [2014 & 2015 ornaments are sold out].  All of the ornaments from years past are on sale for ½ off at the great price of $9.75 each.  Or, if you buy the whole set of 11 – you get a great deal for $49.95.

[Click Here to Purchase Capitol Christmas Ornaments]

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