Maguire Town
19175 Ark Hwy 74

Elkins AR 72727




The first Maguire's to settle in Washington County were Owen and Mary from Kentucky in the 1820's. They and their sons Hosea and Green built a substantial log house on property northeast of Elkins along what is now State Highway 74 and on the east side of White River. This log house was still standing in the 1980's. Next, the Maguires built a trading post. Soon other pioneers began settling around them and the need for a school developed. Owen Maguire gave land and all pitched in to build a log school house around 1832. About 1866 a new board school was built and served the area until 1913 when the school was consolidated with Elkins.

A post office called Maguire's Store was opened in 1854 that was in operation until 1888 when mail was diverted to Hood post office, that name changed to Elkins a few years later. At some point the name of the settlement was changed to Maguire Town.

The settlement grew with new businesses like a blacksmith shop and ferry across White River. Hosea Maguire married and built a new house for his bride called the "Big House". He built a new 3 story brick trading post with bricks made at the site. Maguire conducted a lot of trading at the new store including apples and live stock. The top floor of the building was used for a Masonic Lodge, chartered in 1873 as the Sylva Masonic Temple. The second floor was used for the store and a basement for storage was below.

During the Civil War on October 28, 1862, a skirmish occurred between Union troops under General Herron and Confederates under General Marmaduke. The Confederates men were headed to Fayetteville to attempt to take control of it but were forced back by Herron's men. Just two months later, the far larger Prairie Grove battle took place. More information on this skirmish is available on the Historic Sites map on this site.

When the train line from Fayetteville to St.Paul was built in the 1880's along the west side of White River through Durham and Thompson, it began the downturn for Maguire Town. All that remains of Maguire Town in the 1980's were Owen Maguire's house built in 1826 and Hosea Maguire's "Big House" built in the 1850's. Hosea Maguire's house is now the Bed and Breakfast pictured above. The brick store was struck by lightning and collapsed sometime before the 1980's.

Bibliography:
Maguire Town by Juel Benbrook Hamblen Giles Flashback November 1986
Washington County Post Offices and Postmasters 1829-1976 by Deane Carter published by Washington Co Hist Society
Fields of Blood by William L Shea



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