June 20, 1988

Hoxie School District: Through the years

By Harry C. Belk

When the Iron Mt. Railroad (later the Union Pacific) came through here in 1873 it really opened up this part of the country. They said every train brought a few new settlers to this area. Our family came on one in 1908.

The Frisco Railroad (now Burlington Northern) was surveyed to come through Walnut Ridge in 1882 but there was trouble getting a right-of-way. Mary A. Boas had bought 450 acres one and a half miles south of Walnut Ridge right after the Iron Mt. RR came through. She told the Frisco RR she would give them free right of way if they came through her property and they did.

In 1893 Mary A. Boas laid out the town of Hoxie. The Hoxie School was located just west of the Frisco RR.

Hoxie was named for H.M. Hoxie, one of the nation's best know railroad men. The records say that Hoxie was the roughest town in the state at that time. There were three saloons in this small town of just 200 population.

Our family came to Arkansas in 1908 and settled in the Moore School District. Later it was the Surridge District and later part of the Hoxie School. The next year my dad transferred us to the Ringle District which also became a part of Hoxie School. Then our parents decided I should enter the Walnut Ridge High School because Hoxie had no high school.

After a month at the Walnut Ridge School, about a dozen of us from the Hoxie area thought Hoxie should have a high school. We circulated a petition and convinced the board. Hoxie High School was born in October 1920. The school was first just a two-year school but in the second year it became a four-year school.

Ups and Downs

The Hoxie School suffered tornado damage the night of March 20, 1913. Another tornado completely destroyed the old Hoxie Elementary School and the new high school on our present location that had just been built on May 9, 1927.

In the 1940's a fire destroyed the high school and in December, 1972, another fire destroyed the high school again.


The Hoxie School Board with approval from the patrons in the district have been able to make the following improvements: beginning in 1966 with an elementary library, central office with three additional classrooms, two special education classrooms and a stage added to the cafetorium, along with a gymnasium.

The high school building was added in 1971 and following the fire in December 1972, which destroyed the original high school building, a new library, study halls and classrooms were added to the high school. In the late 1960's the school acquired the property which is now the football field. The Jerry L. Flippo vocational agriculture building was added in . 1979.

The school continued to expand with the renovation of classrooms in the elementary building in 1980, the enlargement of the elementary library and the addition of the elementary classrooms.

The school board added an additional four classrooms and office space to the elementary school in 1984 and during the 1985-86 school year completed the high school complex with the addition of three commercial classrooms and a home economics building.


Belk, Harry C. "Hoxie School District: Through the years." Centinennial Edition 1888-1988 HOXIE, ARKANSAS. 20 June 1988