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One of the most colorful characters in American history - Thomas Hart Benton -- is responsible for the thriving central Arkansas community's name. Located halfway between Little Rock and Hot Springs along I-30, Benton makes a perfect home base for those wanting to visit both communities while partaking of Benton's charms as well.
The discovery of bauxite ore, the source ore for aluminum, is the reason this area of Saline County was settled. This is only place in the United States where it has been feasible to commercially mine the aluminum. The industry took hold in this area in 1899 with top output coming during World War II, when demand increased because German subs were sinking foreign ore ships. The mining thrived for many, many years before the high grade, low silica bauxite ore gave out.
The picturesque Benton town square is the focal point of the community. Don't miss the oddity of the Gann Museum of Saline County, housed in the only known structure in the world constructed of bauxite. In addition to the history of the county, the museum boasts an impressive collection of Niloak Pottery, made in the region from 1909 to 1946. The unique method of "swirling" colors, the pottery's distinctive trademark, died with creator Charles Hyten, making the pieces highly sought after by collectors. The Royal Theatre, now listed on the National Register of Historic Places, hosts live theatrical productions. One of the town's main thoroughfares, Military Road, dates to the 1830s. This route parallels the Old Southwest Trail used by frontier travelers on their way West. The Southwest Trail is part of the Arkansas Heritage Trails System. Both Benton and nearby Bryant provide antique seekers ample opportunity to search for treasures with several antique malls on both sides of the interstate. The Saline River has excellent fishing, scenery and backcountry floating for the outdoors enthusiast.

City Officials

Position Name
Mayor Tom Farmer
Clerk/Treasurer Cindy Stracener
Assistant To Mayor Toby Hirscheider
City Attorney Baxter Drennon
Police Chief Scotty Hodges
Fire Chief Russ Evans
Street Superintendent John Richey
Animal Control Terry Parsons
Director Of Community Development John Parton
Economic Development Director Brad Jordan
Parks, Recreation Director Stephanie Jones
Communications Director Matt Thibault
Council Member Frank Baptist
Council Member Steve Brown
Council Member Bill Donnor
Council Member Jeff Hamm
Council Member Judd Hart
Council Member Shane Knight
Council Member Steve Lee
Council Member Jeff Morrow
Council Member Evelyn Reed
Council Member Ann Spencer-Cole
Finance Director Mandy Spicer
Human Resources Director (Vacant)

City Facts

County: Saline

Population: 35,014

Senate Districts: 13,14,33

House Districts: 23,28,31

Congressional District: 2

Classification: First Class City

Contact Information

114 S. East St.
BENTON, AR 72015

Phone: (501) 776-5900

Fax: (501) 776-5910

Fourth Monday

Web Site: Official Web Site


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