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Pocahontas, Arkansas facts for kids

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Pocahontas, Arkansas
Old Randolph County Courthouse in downtown Pocahontas
Old Randolph County Courthouse in downtown Pocahontas
Official seal of Pocahontas, Arkansas
Location in Randolph County and the state of Arkansas
Location in Randolph County and the state of Arkansas
Country United States
State Arkansas
County Randolph
 • Total 7.6 sq mi (19.5 km2)
 • Land 7.4 sq mi (19 km2)
 • Water 0.2 sq mi (0.5 km2)
Elevation 302 ft (92 m)
Population (2010)
 • Total 6,608
 • Density 869/sq mi (338/km2)
Time zone Central (CST) (UTC-6)
 • Summer (DST) CDT (UTC-5)
ZIP code 72455
Area code(s) 870
FIPS code 05-56540
GNIS feature ID 0078067

Pocahontas is a city in Randolph County, Arkansas, United States, along the Black River. According to 2006 Census Bureau estimates, the population of the city was 6,765. The city is the county seat of Randolph County.

Pocahontas has a number of historic buildings, including:

  • Old Randolph County Courthouse (1871), still defining the center of town
  • St. Mary's AME Church and Pocahontas Colored School (1918), now home to the Eddie Mae Herron Center


This city was named after the Native American from Jamestown, Virginia. A statue of her is located in Overlook Park along the Black River.

The family of Dr. Ransom S. Bettis is given the credit for being the first settlers on the land now called Pocahontas. Dr. Bettis' daughter, Cinderella, married Thomas S. Drew, and lived on 800 acres where the town of Biggers now exists. Bettis and Drew led the founding of Pocahontas as the county seat of Randolph County.

Randolph County is famous for many "firsts"; Arkansas' oldest town, Davidsonville, was established in 1815. The first Arkansas post office was built in Davidsonville in 1817, and the first state courthouse was established in 1818. The earliest land claim was in 1809 near what is now Ravenden Springs. The first actual term of court convened in Arkansas was in 1815 in a part of Lawrence County that was given over to Randolph County. And the country's first overland route, the Natchitoches Trail, went through parts of Randolph County.

In 1835, the Territorial Legislature granted the formation of Randolph County from part of the area then called Lawrence County. The county was named after John Randolph, who was one of the first settlers in the area.

Randolph County encompasses the rolling hills of the Ozarks to the west and rich, flat farmland of the Mississippi Delta to the east. Five rivers flow through the county, providing access to fishing and canoeing. Soybeans, rice, and other grains are the principal crops in the Delta region, while cattle ranching dominates the hill country. The poultry industry is also a vital part of the area economy.

The industrial base is diversified, with products such as shoes, large truck trailers, technical components for communications, picture frames, golf bags and luggage, tool boxes, wood products and more.

Pocahontas is the county seat with a population of 6,616. The other 10,407 residents of Randolph County live in rural areas and five incorporated communities - Maynard, Biggers, Reyno, Ravenden Springs and O'Kean.

Local legend holds that Pocahontas was named the county seat through an act of trickery. Supposedly, at the county meeting to determine which city would receive the title, the delegation from Pocahontas brought in large quantities of alcohol and distributed them to the other delegations. When the time came to vote, the only delegation not passed out or otherwise influenced was that from Pocahontas.


Pocahontas is located at 36°15′49″N 90°58′24″W / 36.26361°N 90.97333°W / 36.26361; -90.97333 (36.263560, -90.973349).

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 7.6 sq mi (20 km2), of which, 7.3 sq mi (19 km2) of it is land and 0.2 square miles (0.52 km2) of it (2.78%) is covered by water.


The climate is of the city is characterized by relatively high temperatures and evenly distributed precipitation throughout the year. The Köppen climate classification subtype for this climate is "Cfa" (humid subtropical climate).

Climate data for Pocahontas, Arkansas
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Average high °C (°F) 7.8
Average low °C (°F) -3.3
Precipitation mm (inches) 89
Source: Weatherbase


Historical population
Census Pop.
1880 325
1890 507 56.0%
1900 967 90.7%
1910 1,547 60.0%
1920 1,806 16.7%
1930 1,896 5.0%
1940 3,028 59.7%
1950 3,840 26.8%
1960 3,665 −4.6%
1970 4,544 24.0%
1980 5,995 31.9%
1990 6,151 2.6%
2000 6,518 6.0%
2010 6,608 1.4%
Est. 2015 6,438 −2.6%
U.S. Decennial Census

As of the census of 2000, 6,518 people, 2,693 households, and 1,742 families resided in the city. The population density was 886.6 people per square mile (342.4/km²). The 2,924 housing units averaged a density of 397.7 per square mile (153.6/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 97.27% Caucasian, 1.10% African American, 0.44% Native American, 0.08% Asian, 0.20% from other races, and 0.91% from two or more races, wit about 0.89% of the population Hispanic or Latino of any race.

Of the 2,693 households, 30.0% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 48.0% were married couples living together, 13.1% had a female householder with no husband present, and 35.3% were not families. Around 31.9% of all households were made up of individuals, and 17.3% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.32 and the average family size was 2.94.

In the city, the population was distributed as 23.7% under the age of 18, 9.7% from 18 to 24, 25.5% from 25 to 44, 20.1% from 45 to 64, and 21.0% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 38 years. For every 100 females, there were 84.6 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 78.5 males.

The median income for a household in the city was $24,450, and for a family was $29,525. Males had a median income of $26,382 versus $18,750 for females. The per capita income for the city was $15,529. About 15.6% of families and 18.8% of the population were below the poverty line, including 24.9% of those under age 18 and 16.5% of those age 65 or over.


A 17-block area of downtown Pocahontas has been designated a National Historic Landmark District. Pocahontas is also a Preserve America Community, and is home to the Imperial Dinner Theatre, the Studio for the Arts and the Downtown Playhouse.

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