was once known for its lumber
community and Sunday rabbit hunts
Written by: Tracy Crain
Sunday, September 3, 2000
There is an interesting, nostalgic
photograph hanging on the wall of the
Edgemont Post Office. Town residents say it
is a “pretty good” historical snapshot of
The black and white photograph highlights a
railroad car that is full of timber. Beside
it, there sits a railroad track and a train
depot station, where several people are
engaged in conversation.
One look and it’s easy to see that Edgemont,
nestled in the heart of the Ozark Mountains,
was once a bustling lumber community.
Where all that lumber business went is not
certain as the Edgemont Post Office, founded
in 1904, seems to be about the only place in
business these days.
Hints of what once was are still visible,
though. Not only was this a bustling lumber
and railroad community in its day, it was
also home to some rather interesting rabbit
hunts. Most everyone who lived in the
community participated in them.
Evalena Berry in her book, Time and the
River: A History of Cleburne County, states
that Edgemont residents would often go
rabbit hunting on Sunday “for sport.”
Back then, she states, it was against
tradition to shoot a gun on Sunday.
For that reason, when a young farm hand saw
a rabbit, he would club it using a piece of
There are only a mere 200 people who reside
in Edgemont today, which is located off of
Arkansas 110 and Arkansas 16.
A look throughout the population records and
it’s revealed that Edgemont experienced it’s
greatest population boom when the Missouri
and North Arkansas Railroad rolled into
town. With its inception, both trade and
tourism opportunities increased
The Chamber of Commerce in Greers Ferry
describes Edgemont as “rich in heritage and
character.” Because of that, they have
documented quite of few the town’s most
For instance, there is the story of Anna,
who used to cut and haul ties for the
According to the Chamber of Commerce, she
lived in the Devil’s Fork area, located
across the lake from Edgemont. The
interesting thing about Anna, as they
notate, is that she would frequently come
into town on a cable ferry, located between
Edgemont and Higden, to sell railroad ties.
Since her load was usually piled higher than
the others, she would frequently sit on the
top of it, cracking a very long whip, all
the while yelling at the four mulls that
were pulling her wagon.
Railroad ties are not the only thing that
made Anna famous. So did her clothes.
Interesting enough, she was known as the
only woman around who wore men’s britches.
It’s reported that the boys in town used to
love to listen to her give the tie graders’
a good cussin’ if they downgraded one of her
History reveals that the railroad was as
much a part of this community’s foundation
and livelihood, as the lumber company.
Janice Cotton, owner of what could be
considered a tourism attraction in Edgemont,
is proud to note that the railroad used to
run across her property.
She moved to Edgemont with her husband
Harold because “they love the area so much.”
“There are a lot of people who will travel
through this town on their way to Fairfield
Bay,” Janice said. “This town is the kind of
place that a person will miss if they blink
while driving. That’s another reason we
enjoy living here.”
She continued, “There are not any problems,
and there is no crime in this community. We
do have a hard time finding workers here,
though. Most people commute into the city.”
Another interesting notation about the
community is that it offers convenient
access to Greers Ferry Lake and is home to a
lot of trees.
“We have a variety of trees in this town. I
know there are a lot of oak, hickory, and
dogwood trees here,” she said.
Janice says the city of Edgemont has changed
dramatically in her time. Surprisingly
enough, she attributes it to the weather.
“We lost a bridge here due to a tornado and
Edgemont was almost destroyed when it
flooded in 1960. Everything about the town
changed after the flood,” she said.
Although they remain in recovery, for the
most part, the folks in Edgemont seem rather
content in this rural haven.
Wanda Stubbs, a part time postmaster in
Edgemont, describes the area as, “a
friendly, retired town.”
“It’s so quiet and pleasant here. We never
see or hear of troubles,” she said. “The
older people in town love to gather for
lunch at the area lodge and do stuff like
that. They are all really nice.”
(Edgemont, located in Cleburne County, is an
excerpt from Road Trips; a weekly of small
towns in Arkansas, written by Tracy Crain
and published by the Arkansas Democrat