Ozark is one of Arkansas's oldest and most enduring cities. The name Ozark originates from the French words "Aux Arc", meaning "big bend". Local folklore claims that French explorers on an expedition came up the Arkansas River in 1819. As the legend goes, they shot an arrow having vowed to found a town at the location where the arrow landed. Allegedly, the arrow hit its target just northeast of the present Franklin County Courthouse.
Ozark was officially founded in 1836 and later named as the Franklin County seat of government. The city was incorporated in 1850 but lost its incorporation status during the Civil War when union troops burned every business and church leaving only three surviving homes. Ozark was reincorporated in 1869 standing strong ever since.
Today Franklin County maintains its rich history and prosperity, and the city of Ozark boasts a flourishing economy that includes light industry, agriculture, banking, health care, education, and more. Ozark has gained a strong reputation as a thriving hub for Arkansas tourism. Its many offerings include shopping, fine dining, and Arkansas wine country. With the scenic Ozark National Forest as our own backyard, outdoor recreation such as camping, hiking, river float trips, ATV trails, hunting, and fishing are just a few of the adventures that await your discovery. Ozark is also home to several festivals and other events drawing thousands of folks from all fifty states and around the world to experience first class entertainment and great fun at some of the most picturesque venues in the nation.
It's not just something we say. Ozark truly is, Where It All Begins...