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5 Fun Facts About February 18 In Arkansas History

---Learn Every Day: AR Today In History Facts Texted Each Day - Text: history ar To: 618-270-4005---

1. In 1930, a historic Arkansas flood began on February 18 that lasted for two weeks. The flood waters inundated communities throughout the state, destroying bridges, homes, and businesses. The disaster claimed 14 lives and caused millions of dollars in damages.

2. The first battle of the Civil War fought in Arkansas took place on February 18, 1862, at the Battle of Cross Hollows. Confederate troops under General Earl Van Dorn were forced to retreat to Arkansas after their defeat at the Battle of Pea Ridge.

3. On February 18, 1877, the Arkansas State Legislature passed the first convict leasing law in the South. Under this law, prisoners were leased out to private contractors to work on public projects, such as building roads and bridges. The practice soon led to widespread abuse and exploitation of prisoners.

4. William Jefferson Clinton was born in Hope, Arkansas, on August 19, 1946. However, his political career began in earnest on February 18, 1975, when he announced his intention to run for Attorney General of Arkansas. Clinton went on to become Governor of Arkansas and President of the United States.

5. In 2009, the Arkansas House of Representatives voted to expel Representative Paul Bookout from office on charges of ethics violations. The vote came after an investigation revealed that Bookout had spent campaign funds on personal expenses, including clothing, travel, and entertainment. The expulsion was the first of a sitting state legislator in almost a century.
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