Printed by the Compton Litho. Company, St. Louis.
Trade card, 3 1/4 x 5 1/8 inches. Undated, but 1880s. Some light rubbing to image, one tiny corner chip; very good.
This uncommon and attractive card invites inquiries "for full and complete information touching on the products of Arkansas, her climate, soil, timber, mineral lands, etc." It was issued by two land agents of the St. Louis, Iron Mountain, and Southern Railway (which ran between St. Louis and Texarkana) and may have been distributed at any one of several expositions where the State of Arkansas proudly exhibited its agricultural bounty in the 1880s. The Boston Public Library holds a slight variant on this card that specifically directs interested parties to the Arkansas Exhibit at the New Orleans Centennial Exposition of 1884. Railroads were essential to the economic recovery of the post-Civil War South. Seeking to increase the amount of traffic they carried, the railroads actively promoted diversification in agriculture, encouraging people to come to Arkansas and grow new crops--among them the luscious fruits shown on this card.