1986 22¢ Arkansas Statehood
Issue Date: January 3, 1986
City: Little Rock, AK
Printed By: American Bank Note Company
Printing Method: Photogravure
U.S. #2167 commemorates the 150th anniversary of Arkansas statehood.
Years as a Territory
In 1812, Arkansas and the northern part of the Louisiana Territory were organized as the Missouri Territory. Congress created the Arkansas Territory in 1819. It included today’s Arkansas and part of Oklahoma. The Arkansas River Valley served as a route to the Far West, and many travelers passed through the state. Van Buren and Fort Smith became important trade centers.
Statehood and the Civil War
On June 15, 1836, Arkansas became the 25th state to join the Union. Arkansas joined the Union just as the national debate over the future of slavery in America was becoming more and more intense. In 1860, Abraham Lincoln, well known for his anti-slavery stance, was elected president. This resulted in several Southern states seceding from the Union and forming the Confederacy.
As a slave state, Arkansas was torn as to what course of action it should take. In March of 1861, an Arkansas convention voted to stay within the Union. However, when President Lincoln called for Union states to provide troops for the war, Arkansas refused. Then, in May of 1861, another state convention voted to secede.
In March of 1862, Union forces won an important battle at Pea Ridge, Arkansas. Northern troops pushed the Confederates into the southern portion of the state. On September 10, 1863, the Union army captured Little Rock, so the Confederates established a new capital at Washington, Arkansas. In 1864, a group of pro-Union Arkansans formed a government at Little Rock. This government’s constitution abolished slavery. Both governments existed until the war ended in 1865.