Walks Through History to Visit Downtown Dumas

Arkansas Historic Preservation Program - Friday, October 27, 2017

The Arkansas Historic Preservation Program’s next “Walks Through History” tour will visit the Dumas Commercial Historic District beginning at 11 a.m. on Saturday, November 11.

Dumas was established in 1904, after the St. Louis, Iron Mountain and Southern Railway was built through the farm of William Dumas. The town's oldest surviving commercial building, the Porter Grocery, was one of several built by David Porter between 1905 and 1938. The historic district includes eight noteworthy buildings, including the Merchants and Farmers Bank building, a Colonial Revival National Register-listed building designed by Charles L. Thompson. All of the buildings occupy a single city block of South Main Street, between Choctaw and Waterman Streets. Most of the buildings of interest were built in the 1920s, and are vernacular brick commercial buildings. The tour begins at the Merchant and Farmer’s Bank Building at Waterman and Main streets and is co-sponsored by Main Street Dumas.

In the “Walks Through History” program, which is co-sponsored by the Arkansas Humanities Council, AHPP historians each month provide free guided walking tours of historic structures and districts across Arkansas. Most tours begin at 11 a.m. on Saturdays. The American Institute of Architects offers two HSW continuing education learning unit credits for members who attend a “Walks Through History” tour.

The final 2017 “Walks Through History” tour will be December 9 at the El Dorado Commercial Historic District, co-sponsored by Main Street El Dorado.

All tours are free and open to the public. For information, call the AHPP at (501) 324-9880, write the agency at 1100 North Street, Little Rock, AR 72201, send an e-mail message to [email protected] or visit

The Walks Through History program is co-sponsored by the Arkansas Humanities Council, which seeks to promote the understanding, appreciation, and use of the humanities in Arkansas. The humanities include the study of history, literature, ethics, philosophy, language, and the various legal, cultural, religious, and folk traditions – past and present – that define the human condition.

The AHPP is the Department of Arkansas Heritage agency responsible for identifying, evaluating, registering and preserving the state’s cultural resources. Other agencies are the Arkansas Arts Council, the Delta Cultural Center in Helena, the Old State House Museum, the Mosaic Templars Cultural Center, the Arkansas Natural Heritage Commission, the Historic Arkansas Museum and the Arkansas State Archives.

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