The City of Eureka Springs was founded and named on July 4, 1879.
By late 1879, the estimated population of Eureka Springs reached 10,000 people and in 1881, the town was declared a "City of the First Class," the fourth largest city in Arkansas. Today, our history lives on as the entire downtown area is listed on the National Register of Historic Places with National Significance. While we're nowhere near the 4th largest in Arkansas, Eureka is still a "First Class City."
Hidden historical points of interest including the 1929 Municipal Auditorium opened by John Phillips Souza, the Eureka Underground, a civil war hospital, famed Abolitionist Carry Nation's home, houses of ill repute, numerous bathhouses and the site of Marshall Tilgham's famous capture of the final member of the Dalton gang all may be found in Downtown Eureka Springs.
Eureka Springs also is home to five historic hotels predating 1906, nearly one hundred restored mansions now serving as bed and breakfast lodging and hundreds of other cabins and cottages that range from summer cottages in the 1880 to roadside motor courts of the 1950s.
For its preservation, Eureka Springs has been recognized as one of 12 DISTINCTIVE DESTINATIONS by the National Trust for Historic Preservation and is a certified Main Street.
The National Main Street Center was established as a program of the National Trust for Historic Preservation in 1980 as a way to address the myriad issues facing older and historic downtowns during that time. Working with a nationwide network of coordinating programs and local communities, Main Street has helped over 2,000 communities across the country bring economic vitality back downtown, while celebrating their historic character, and bringing communities together.
An exciting new chapter for the organization began on July 1, 2013, when the National Main Street Center launched as an independent subsidiary of the National Trust. This transition enables Main Street to build on its three-decade record of success, with new leadership and new resources that will help communities respond to evolving needs and opportunities in the commercial district revitalization field.
In 2015, the Center launched a new program brand for the network of Main Street programs—Main Street America™—to reinvigorate our collective look, feel, and strategy to position Main Street as a leader locally, regionally, and nationally.
The National Main Street Center is based in Chicago, Illinois, with an office in Washington, DC, and field staff located throughout the country.