Little Rock is the capital and most populous city of the U.S. state of Arkansas. As the county seat of Pulaski County, the city was incorporated on November 7, 1831, on the south bank of the Arkansas River close to the state’s geographic center. The city derives its name from a rock formation along the river, named the “Little Rock” (French: La Petite Roche) by the French explorer Jean-Baptiste Bénard de la Harpe in the 1720s.
The hub of Little Rock is the bustling River Market District featuring restaurants, shops, bars, nightlife, museums and hotels as well as the area’s main library. Focal points in the city include the Clinton Presidential Center & Park, the nearby world headquarters of Heifer International, and the Central Arkansas Nature Center.
Arts and culture mavens will love the Arkansas Arts Center, which houses both traveling exhibitions and an exceptional permanent collection of works on paper, and the ESSE Purse Museum on South Main street, the only American museum dedicated to the art of the handbag.
The capital city’s namesake – the little rock – is now the center of this beautiful area with interpretive plaques and innovative landscaping.The story of the “little rock” — Benard de le Harpe, who is believed to have traveled about 50 miles above the present sites of Little Rock and North Little Rock, AR, described the area when writing about his journey. He noted a landmark on the north bank of the Arkansas River, which he referred to as the “French Rock” (now known as “big rock”). The first outcropping of rock along the riverbanks above its mouth on the south bank came to be known as the La Petite Roche — “Little Rock.” The city of Little Rock was incorporated just over 100 years later.
Little Rock has been recognized by Kiplinger’s as Number 1 on the “10 Great Places to Live” list; Number 6 on Gallup’s “America’s Happiest Cities,” Number 2 on Moody’s Investors Services “Most Diverse Economy in the Nation,” Number 46 in Forbes’s Top 200 “Best Places for Business and Careers,” and Number 7 on “Best Value City” by Kiplinger’s.
With a population of 197,706 (2014 Census estimate) Little Rock is a center for several major employers in a variety of industries including healthcare, aerospace, banking and finance, technology, advanced manufacturing, government, education, and agriculture. Competitive wages and Arkansas’ right-to-work environment provide an excellent workforce environment for businesses.
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