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The Elusive George Washington Donaghey Monument

Ever since I read the book The Carpenter from Conway I have been curious as to where a particular monument might be located and so has Vivian Hogue who recently asked about the location of the monument in the letters to the editor section of the Conway, Arkansas news paper "The Log Cabin Democrat".

Donaghey monument status requested

Many of our residents, especially the many new ones, are not aware that Conway was an early home of George Donaghey, Arkansas Governor from 1909 to 1913.  He regretted leaving Conway for the office, as he loved “the tree-shaded streets and magnificent oaks.” Donaghey Avenue was named for him, and Louvenia Street for his wife. He built several prominent structures in Conway and other Arkansas towns as well as other states and is credited with the construction of the Arkansas State Capitol building. He was a prohibitionist in his races for local mayor and governor, and instrumental in bringing three colleges to Conway. He died in 1937.

In the book by Cal Ledbetter titled Carpenter From Conway, Ledbetter says of Donaghey, “He bought over a period of time some 1,000 acres of swampland southwest of Conway and worked for many years to make it profitable. It was sold in 1916, but Donaghey left a concrete monument behind in the middle of the field that gives advice to future owners.  The base is 10’ X 7’ and the part containing the inscription is 5’ tall and 6’ wide.  The message that should last forever says, “The struggle for [this land’s] reclamation has been the greatest task of my life. Future owners should greatly enlarge the levee, tile drain the land, and provide an adequate pump for rain or seep water during excessive overflows ...” It is signed, “George W. Donaghey.” 

The book does not contain a photo of the monument or land description. Not knowing the latter, I would be interested in knowing if there is someone who can verify the current status of the monument. Does it still exist?  If it does, has it been discovered during or endangered by the new airport construction?  If so or not, the Faulkner County Historical Society would be interested in any verifiable documentation.

— Vivian Hogue, Conway

 Well, I do think I have found the monument via google maps.

Here are a series of screen shots illustrating where the elusive Donaghey monument might be residing



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