ARKANSAS: Prejudice & Pride

ARKANSAS NATIVE: All we need in this [State] is a little more rain and a little better society.

VISITOR: That's all Hell needs.

Barnside humor like this made On a Slow Train Through Arkansaw a best-seller on trains and newsstands in the early 1900s. The two-bit joke book was the making of Author Thomas W. Jackson and the unmaking of Arkansas. No matter how the State progressed, no matter how its cities grew, it was always backwoods to the rest of the U.S. Arkansans developed a mass inferiority complex unique in U.S. history.

A new generation of jokesters grew up to keep legend...

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