There are two purposes for Comments in the Encyclopedia of Arkansas History & Culture. Comments can either add information to aid in the understanding of the entry or add information that provides an alternate interpretation of the historical record.

Information included in this section is not fact checked by the Encyclopedia staff. The author of the Comment is entirely responsible for its content.

I disagree with Professor Dougan’s conclusion that the Arkansas Militia was too disorganized to respond to the president’s call for volunteers to support the Spanish-American War. Of the twelve companies that formed the 1st Arkansas, ten were either existing militia units or a combination of existing militia units. All twelve companies that made up the 2nd Arkansas were militia. So twenty-two of twenty-four companies were composed of members of the Arkansas State Guard. While the commander of the 1st Arkansas was brought in from the regular army, his officers were militia officers and the commander and staff of the 2nd Arkansas were militia officers. There is a good Wikipedia article with the appropriate references on the subject of the Arkansas State Guard and the Spanish-American War. Also, the Butler Center has a copy of the Adjutant General’s Report 1897–1900, which provides the details on the Arkansas State Guard and its mobilization for the Spanish-American War.

Damon Cluck
North Little Rock, AR

Jeff Hayes Sr. was the first black man in the Arkansas National Guard.
Jay Hayes
Little Rock, AR