Trail of Tears

Butterfield Overland Mail

Civil War

Mount Comfort

The Mount Comfort community, now part of northwest Fayetteville, was settled about 1830. One of the first settlers at Mount Comfort was William Cunningham. He built a fine brick home, perhaps the first brick house in Washington County, on his farm about one mile northeast of the present-day Mount Comfort Cemetery. At least two Cherokee detachments on the Trail of Tears  passed by the Cunningham home on their journey to Indian Territory. Records kept by the B. B. Cannon detachment note that on December 25, 1837, the group “halted a half mile in advance of Mr. Cunningham’s at a branch, 3 o’c P.M.” Dr. William Morrow, physician assigned to the Richard Taylor detachment wrote that on March 21, 1839, he “passed through Fayetteville and met detachment at Cunningham’s, 3 miles from town.” 

During the Civil War, Mount Comfort was the location of Confederate recruiting posts and a Unionist farm colony. The Mount Comfort Church was used as a hospital during the war.

Text of the Arkansas Sesquicentennial Commission’s marker at Mount Comfort:

After the August 10, 1861, Battle of Wilson’s Creek, Mo., four of Washington County’s first Confederate war dead—Sgt. S. R. Bell, Sgt. Wm. Brown, Pvt. Henry Fulbright, and Pvt. Samuel McCurdy—were buried in Mount Comfort Cemetery. The 34th Arkansas Infantry (CS) raised troops at Mount Comfort in 1862 and would fight at Prairie Grove and Jenkins’ Ferry. The community held hospitals for Union and Confederate troops and hosted a Unionist colony late in the war, where local farmers banded together for mutual protection from bands of marauders infesting the area.