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Garland County, Arkansas facts for kids

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Garland County
Garland County Courthouse
Garland County Courthouse
Map of Arkansas highlighting Garland County
Location within the U.S. state of Arkansas
Map of the United States highlighting Arkansas
Arkansas's location within the U.S.
Country  United States
State  Arkansas
Founded April 5, 1873
Named for Augustus Hill Garland
Seat Hot Springs
Largest city Hot Springs
 • Total 735 sq mi (1,900 km2)
 • Land 678 sq mi (1,760 km2)
 • Water 57 sq mi (150 km2)  7.7%%
 • Estimate 
 • Density 142/sq mi (55/km2)
Time zone UTC−6 (Central)
 • Summer (DST) UTC−5 (CDT)
Congressional district 4th

Garland County is a county located in the U.S. state of Arkansas. As of the 2010 census, the population was 96,024. The county seat is Hot Springs.

Garland County comprises the Hot Springs, AR Metropolitan Statistical Area. The county includes Hot Springs National Park, the first property to be protected under federal legislation; a law was passed in 1832 supported by President Andrew Jackson to preserve this area, even before Arkansas was admitted as a state.


This area was occupied by the historic Natchitoches people, who frequented the hot springs for their healing powers. Their ancestors among regional indigenous peoples had been coming to this area for thousands of years.

President Thomas Jefferson requested William Dunbar, a planter and amateur scientist of Natchez, to explore this area. Dunbar led small group of a dozen soldiers and friend George Hunter, a chemist, to the Ouachita Mountains to report on the Indian tribes, minerals, and springs. They reached Hot Springs in December 1804, where they found a basic cabin used by visitors to the springs.

The first European-American settler was Jean Pierre Emanuel Prudhomme, a descendant of French colonists. An owner of a plantation at Red River, Prudhomme was suffering from illness and sought relief from the springs. In 1807 He built the first permanent European house by the springs, living here for two years. Isaac Cates and John Percival, two trappers from Alabama, joined him. Percival foresaw a great potential for the area and built log cabins in order to rent to visitors to the springs.

In 1828, Ludovicus Belding came with wife and children to visit the hot springs. After a few months they built a small hotel for the visitors of the springs.

In 1832 President Andrew Jackson signed legislation to protect the hot springs area for recreational use by American citizens as Hot Springs Reservation, the first time such action was taken. This was four years before Arkansas became a state, on June 15, 1836. A dispute among original settlers and their descendants over control of the property was settled by the US Supreme Court in 1877 in favor of the federal government. Hot Springs National Park was established in 1921 and is managed by the National Park Service. Garland County is Arkansas' 68th county, formed on April 5, 1873, from portions of Hot Spring, Montgomery, and Saline Counties. It was named for Augustus H. Garland, eleventh governor of Arkansas.


According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 735 square miles (1,900 km2), of which 678 square miles (1,760 km2) is land and 57 square miles (150 km2) (7.7%) is water.

Major highways

Adjacent counties

National protected areas


Historical population
Census Pop.
1880 9,023
1890 15,328 69.9%
1900 18,773 22.5%
1910 27,271 45.3%
1920 25,785 −5.4%
1930 36,031 39.7%
1940 41,664 15.6%
1950 47,102 13.1%
1960 46,697 −0.9%
1970 54,131 15.9%
1980 70,531 30.3%
1990 73,397 4.1%
2000 88,068 20.0%
2010 96,024 9.0%
Est. 2015 97,177 1.2%
U.S. Decennial Census
1790–1960 1900–1990
1990–2000 2010–2015
USA Garland County, Arkansas age pyramid
Age pyramid Garland County

As of the 2000 United States Census, there were 88,068 people, 37,813 households, and 25,259 families residing in the county. The population density was 130 people per square mile (50/km²). There were 44,953 housing units at an average density of 66 per square mile (26/km²). The racial makeup of the county was 88.85% White, 7.80% Black or African American, 0.61% Native American, 0.50% Asian, 0.03% Pacific Islander, 0.72% from other races, and 1.49% from two or more races. 2.56% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.

There were 37,813 households out of which 25.10% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 53.20% were married couples living together, 10.10% had a female householder with no husband present, and 33.20% were non-families. 28.80% of all households were made up of individuals and 13.50% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.28 and the average family size was 2.78.

In the county, the population was spread out with 21.30% under the age of 18, 7.30% from 18 to 24, 25.20% from 25 to 44, 25.10% from 45 to 64, and 21.20% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 42 years. For every 100 females there were 94.40 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 90.80 males.

The median income for a household in the county was $31,724, and the median income for a family was $38,079. Males had a median income of $28,117 versus $20,421 for females. The per capita income for the county was $18,631. About 10.50% of families and 14.60% of the population were below the poverty line, including 22.70% of those under age 18 and 8.60% of those age 65 or over.




Census-designated places

Unincorporated communities


Garland County Arkansas 2010 Township Map large
Townships in Garland County, Arkansas as of 2010

Townships in Arkansas are the divisions of a county. Each township includes unincorporated areas; some may have incorporated cities or towns within part of their boundaries. Arkansas townships have limited purposes in modern times. However, the United States Census does list Arkansas population based on townships (sometimes referred to as "county subdivisions" or "minor civil divisions"). Townships are also of value for historical purposes in terms of genealogical research. Each town or city is within one or more townships in an Arkansas county based on census maps and publications. The townships of Garland County are listed below; listed in parentheses are the cities, towns, and/or census-designated places that are fully or partially inside the township.

Township FIPS code ANSI code
Total area
Total area
Land area
Land area
Water area
Water area
Geographic coordinates
Hale 05-91581 00066591 Mountain Pine, most of CDP Hot Springs Village, small part of CDP Rockwell 16,142 41.99 16.21 428.979 1,111 384.389 995.6 44.590 115.5 34°38′02″N 93°11′55″W / 34.633909°N 93.198598°W / 34.633909; -93.198598
Hot Springs 05-91773 00066592 most of Hot Springs 41,479 801.70 309.54 54.073 140.0 51.739 134.0 2.334 6.045 34°29′40″N 93°02′52″W / 34.494338°N 93.047883°W / 34.494338; -93.047883
Lake Hamilton 05-92100 00066594 CDP Lake Hamilton, most of CDP Rockwell 20,534 260.45 100.56 86.717 224.6 78.839 204.2 7.878 20.40 34°25′52″N 93°05′11″W / 34.431040°N 93.086323°W / 34.431040; -93.086323
Whittington 05-94047 00066602 Fountain Lake, Lonsdale, CDP Piney, part of CDP Hot Springs Village, small part of Hot Springs 17,599 108.09 41.73 164.852 427.0 162.814 421.7 2.038 5.278 34°34′08″N 92°59′59″W / 34.568990°N 92.999676°W / 34.568990; -92.999676


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