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Baxter County Historical Society November Meeting
November 22, 2016

UNIVERSITY OF ARKANSAS PROFESSOR ERDMAN UNVEILS HISTORY OF HICKS SITE IN RUSH FOR THE BAXTER COUNTY HISTORICAL SOCIETY University of Arkansas Professor Kimball Erdman and a team of graduate students have been working for several months to create a digital reconstruction of the Hicks family Hotel and Store in the historic “ghost town” of Rush on the Buffalo River. He will reveal the results of their research as guest speaker for a combined meeting of the Baxter County Historical and Genealogical Society and Marion County Historical Society on Tuesday, November 22. Professor Erdman’s presentation is called “If Walls Could Talk.” Professor Erdman describes the Hicks Site is a ten-acre property within the Rush Historic District, a former zinc mining community that is now part of the Buffalo National River area. From the early 1900s through the late 1920s the enterprising Hicks family operated a prominent hotel, livery service, and general store in the boom/bust town. Erdman and his team have used explorations on the site, along with archival pictures, documents, interviews and computer design technology to help to tell the story. Professor Kimball notes that “Unlike the many fair-weather residents of Rush, the Hicks family were determined to make the narrow Ozark mountain valley their home, riding out lean times, family tragedy, and eventually a rapidly declining population.” The team’s research shows that the front yard of the hotel during this period included such features as a bridal path and several diamond-shaped and circle-shaped concrete and pebble-bordered flower beds. The path, which was bordered on both sides by trough-shaped concrete and pebble flower beds, led from the south concrete steps to the hotel's front porch. These and other historical details will be revealed in Erdman’s presentation. The joint meeting of the two societies will be held on Tuesday, November 22, at 6:00 p.m. in the Knox Room of The Donald W. Reynolds Library Serving Baxter County, at 300 Library Hill. The meeting is free and guests are always welcome. For more information call the Baxter Historical Society at 870-425-2551, or the Marion Historical Society at 870-449-6195.

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