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Franklin County is a county located in the state of Arkansas. Based on the 2010 census, the population was 18,125. The county has two county seats, Charleston and Ozark. The county was formed on December 19, 1837. Franklin county is named for Benjamin Franklin, American statesman.
Franklin is named for Benjamin Franklin, the famous printer, scientist, diplomat, and Founding Father. Benjamin Franklin (January 17, 1706 [O.S. January 6, 1705] - April 17, 1790) was one of the Founding Fathers of the United States of America. A noted polymath, Franklin was a leading author and printer, satirist, political theorist, politician, scientist, inventor, civic activist, statesman, and diplomat. As a scientist, he was a major figure in the Enlightenment and the history of physics for his discoveries and theories regarding electricity. He invented the lightning rod, bifocals, the Franklin stove, a carriage odometer, and a musical instrument. He formed both the first public lending library in America and first fire department in Pennsylvania. He was an early proponent of colonial unity and as a political writer and activist he, more than anyone, invented the idea of an American nation and as a diplomat during the American Revolution, he secured the French alliance that helped to make independence possible.
County QuickFacts: CensusBureau Quick Facts
Franklin county was created in December 19, 1837, from Crawford County and named after Benjamin Franklin. Travel across the Arkansas River was so difficult in the early days of the county, two county seats were established: Ozark in the north and Charleston in the south. The county lays claim to the first oil strike in Arkansas and sits on vast fields of coal, clay, iron, shale and other minerals; however agriculture is its main economy base. Production and processing of poultry accounts for most of the jobs. Swiss-German immigrants of a century ago recognized the tops of Franklin's mountains as a place to grow wine grapes. Altus has grown to be the winemaking capital of Arkansas. Growers such as Mount Bethel, Sax, Post, and the largest, Wiederkehr are located within the county, with Wiederkehr Winery offering tours, wine tasting, and a restaurant in the original underground cellar built in 1880 by John A. Wiederkehr and now listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Winefest in September each year draws a large number of visitors to the area.
To the north of the Arkansas River, which bisects Franklin County, the county is wet and alcohol is sold in liquor stores, bars and local vineyards. To the south of the Arkansas River, the county is dry.
As reported by the Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 620 square miles (1,600 km2), of which 609 square miles (1,580 km2) is land and 11 square miles (28 km2) (1.7%) is water.
The landscape of Franklin County is very rocky terrain in the northern half, and rolling farmlands, forested ridges, and isolated mountains in the south because travel across the Arkansas River was so difficult in the early days of the county
Bordering counties are as follows: