How does Fayetteville present itself to America? There are at least a dozen communities named Fayetteville around the country. Many of them are very small towns. Three of them are profiled herein.
Fayetteville, Texas, is the smallest. It’s a rural community about halfway between Austin and Houston. Its population was 274 in the 2010 census. According to the town’s web page, the settlement of Fayetteville was established by three families of Austin’s Old Three Hundred, and was originally a stagecoach stop for travelers. The town was named Fayetteville in 1844 and was later incorporated in 1882.
The City of Fayetteville, Texas, is listed on the National Register of Historic Places and has more than 300 historic structures. There are many historic markers and plaques around the courthouse square. The town’s water tower is the community’s most prominent landmark and gives the city its identity. It was built in the early 1930s.
Fayetteville is a bustling community with non-stop activities ranging from acoustic pickin’ in the park to chamber music concerts. It has an Arts for Rural Texas program and features regular book signings and lectures by prominent artists.
Fayetteville, Arkansas, is a college town. It’s home to the University of Arkansas. It’s the mid-size Fayetteville with a population of 74,000, and is the third largest city in Arkansas. When classes are in session, students on campus dramatically change the city’s demographics. Thousands of loyal Arkansas Razorbacks alumni and fans travel to Fayetteville to attend football and basketball games.
The city’s logo contains its official seal. Although much of northwest Arkansas has grown with Walmart’s ascent to the #1 corporation listed by the Fortune 500, Fayetteville has made it clear that the city prefers to associate itself with the University of Arkansas rather than the worldwide retailer. Walmart is based in nearby Bentonville, and is one of six Fortune 500 corporations in the state (the others are Dillard’s, J.B. Hunt, Murphy Oil, Tyson Foods and Windstream).
The city derives its cultural identity from the University of Arkansas, exhibiting many trademarks of a college town such as a prominent arts and music scene, emphasis on local businesses, college-oriented bar/restaurant entertainment district and progressive residents. Fayetteville’s Historic Square has been the center of town since 1829. The square plays host to a variety of events, including First Thursday on the Square, the Block Street Block Party and the Lights of the Ozarks Festival. The square is constituted of both historic structures and new construction including boutiques, restaurants, music venues, museums, condos, the visitor center, and a convention center.
Fayetteville, N.C., is an Army town and is the largest of all the cities named Fayetteville. It has an estimated population of 204,408 making it the sixth-largest municipality in North Carolina. It has received the All-America City Award from the National Civic League three times. Fayetteville is in the Sandhills on the Cape Fear River. Fort Bragg and Pope Army Airfield Field are just north of the city. Several U.S. Army airborne units are stationed at Fort Bragg, most prominently the XVIII Airborne Corps HQ, the 82nd Airborne Division, and the United States Army Special Operations Command.
The city no longer uses its official seal as its logo. The centerpiece of the logo was the familiar Market House, which African American City Council members found objectionable because slaves were occasionally sold there in Ante Bellum Fayetteville.
In late June 1775, residents drew up the “Liberty Point Resolves,” which preceded the Declaration of Independence by a little more than a year. Robert Rowan, who apparently organized the group, signed first. He was one of the area’s leading public figures of the 18th century. A merchant and entrepreneur, he settled in Cross Creek in the 1760s. He served as an officer in the French and Indian War, as sheriff, legislator, and as a leader of the Patriot cause in the Revolutionary War. Seventy-First Township in western Cumberland County (now a part of Fayetteville) is named for a British regiment during the American Revolution — the 71st Regiment of Foot. Fayetteville, NC, was named for Marquis de Lafayette, the French hero of the Revolutionary War. It was the first city in the United States named for him, and the only namesake he visited.