"The Polk’s Plantations" Subject Of Upcoming Lakeport Talk

LAKEPORT PLANTATION, AR (Ben Caxton) — “The Polks’ Plantations and the Creation of Cotton Kingdom in the Old South” will be presented by Dr. Kelly Houston Jones in the next Lakeport Legacies monthly history talk on September 28 at the Lakeport Plantation in Lake Village. Jones will discuss her research on the Polk family’s extensive cotton plantations across Arkansas, Mississippi, and Tennessee. The prominent family was at the center of the historical processes that created King Cotton in the newest parts of the Old South. President James K. Polk himself invested in cotton, while his relatives ran cotton plantations across the Mississippi Delta. George W. Polk, the President’s cousin, co-owned the Hilliard Plantation on Grand Lake in Chicot County. Polk with his brother-in-law, Isaac Hilliard, owned 151 slaves and 550 acres of improved land in 1850. In 1845, he built a huge Greek Revival home near Columbia, Tennessee he named “Rattle and Snap.” James K. Polk, who served as president from 1845 to 1849, purchased a plantation in Yalobusha County, Mississippi in 1834. A nephew, William Wilson Polk, owned a large plantation at Walnut Bend in Phillips County, Arkansas and financed his uncle’s presidential run. Dr. Jones is an Assistant Professor of History at Austin Peay State University specializing in the history of slavery. She received her Ph.D. from the University of Arkansas in 2014.


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