JUDGE ANDREW SCOTT

Although Scott County was named for Judge Andrew Scott, so far as can be determined he never lived in the county. The following article is copied from Centennial History of Arkansas, Vol. 1, by Dallas T. Herndon, 1922:

Scott County

"This is one of the western border counties. It is bounded on the north by Logan and Sebastian counties; on the east by Yell county; on the south by Montgomery and Polk counties, and on the west by the State of Oklahoma. It has an area of 970 square miles, much of which is mountainous, the average elevation being 910 feet. The valleys are fertile and the hill lands are well adapted to fruit growing. The county was created by the act of November 3, 1833, out of territory taken from the counties of Crawford and Pope. An election for commissioners to locate the permanent county seat was held soon after the county was created. Robert Cauthron, Joseph Tomlinson and William W. Fleming were elected and in April, 1834, located it at Cauthron, now a small station on the Kansas City Southern Railroad in the western part of the county. Some years later it was removed to Waldron, where it has since remained. The first county officers were : Elijah Baker, judge; S.B. Walker, clerk; James Riley, sheriff; J.R. Choate, coroner.

Andrew Scott, for whom the county was named, was born in Virginia on August 6, 1788. When about twenty years old he came west with his brother, John Scott, and located at Ste. Genevieve, Missouri. He studied law, married Miss Eliza Jones of Potosi, Missouri, and there begun the practice of his profession. Upon the organization of Arkansas Territory he was appointed one of the judges of the Superior Court and was the first of the territorial officials to arrive at Arkansas Post. When the capital was removed to Little Rock, Judge Scott went along. In the spring of 1829 he removed to what is now Pope County and laid off the town of Scotia. He was the delegate from Pope and Johnson counties to the constitutional convention of 1836. He died at the home of Elijah Truitt, at Norristown, on March 13, 1851.

Judge Scott was a small man physically, weighing not more than 135 pounds, but he was not lacking in courage. While still at Arkansas Post he and Judge Selden were engaged in a game of whist with two ladies. Judge Selden disputed some statement made by Scott's partner and Scott demanded an apology. This led to a duel, which was fought on the Mississippi side of the river opposite Montgomery's point, and Judge Selden was killed at the first fire. In the spring of 1828 he got into an altercation with Edmund Hogan, by whom he had been defeated for the Legislature in 1827. Hogan was a powerful man, weighing over 200 pounds, and knocked Scott down. Scott sprang to his feet, drew a sword from a cane which he always carried and stabbed Hogan four times before bystanders could interfere. He gave himself up to the authorities, was tried and acquitted, the evidence showing that Hogan was the aggressor. A son, John R. Homer Scott, represented Pope County in the consitutional convention of 1874.

Scott is divided into the following townships: Black Fork, Blansett, Brawley, Brushy, Cauthron, Cedar, Coal, Denton, Hickman, Hon, Hunt, James, Johnson, Jones, LaFave, Lafayette, Lamb, Lewis, Little Texas, Mill Creek, Mountain, Mount Pleasant, Oliver, Park, Tate and Tomlinson. The population of the county in 1920 was 13,232.

Waldron, the county seat and principal town, is situated near the center of the county and was incorporated on December 17, 1852. It has a bank, a weekly newspaper, a canning factory, an ice and cold storage plant, electric lights, a number of well stocked stores and a population of 918. Being the terminus of a branch of the Kansas City Southern Railroad, it is an important shipping point. Mansfield, part of which is in Sebastian County, was incorporated on August 29, 1888. It has a bank, a flour mill, a brick factory, an ice and cold storage plant, a weekly newspaper, large lumber interests, natural gas, mercantile concerns and a population of 923 on the Scott County side of the line. Abbott, Barton, Coaldale, Olio and Weeks are the principal villages."

Note: John P. O'Nale, who has studied the early history of Scott County extensively, pointed out some errors in Mr. Herndon's information above: "The first county seat was located at the home of Walter Cauthron, southeast of the present day town of Booneville. The county seat was first moved to Winfield, then to Waldron. The article lists only a part of the townships formed between 1833 and 1922, the time of it's publication, and includes a village named Barton, which was never in Scott County. Waldron was incorporated before 1850 and Bates was incorporated in 1907."

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