Cave Springs Got Its Start With A Grist Mill Built Soon After Statehood; Once Named Cannon Article from June 14, 1960 NWA Times
Cave Springs, best known for its cave and spring, got its start as a town with a grist mill built there by George Robbins just after statehood. This mill was sold to Elijah Allen in 1852. It was operated as the Allen mill for many years [The above image is of the Allen's Mill,]
John Sandusky had the first store in Cave Springs. The first school was a one-room loghouse called "Stick in the Mud." It was named this because the chimney was made of mud and sticks.
At a very early date James Dickson built a grist mill a mile north of Cave Springs. He later sold this mill to Mr. Fincannon, who got the post office put in and ran it in one room of his mill. The town was then named Cannon. Over a period of several years the post office moved back and forth from the Fincannon mill to the Allen mill.
Fincannon/Phillips Mill - Mr. and Mrs. Buck Phillips in front of Phillips Mill north of Cave Springs, earlier known as Dickson's Mill. Photo taken about 1910
The Fincannon mill was one of the few mills to run throughout the Civil War in this area. Buck Phillips later bought and ran the mill, and many people still think of it as the Phillips mill. He sold it to J. L. Martin of Parcell, Mo., in 1912. In later years it was taken down.
After the Allen mill ceased to operate, W. M. Artlett bought the spring and farm around it. He built a dam and made a lake there and a new mill.
The name was changed to Cave Springs in 1902 or 1903. The Kansas City and Memphis Railroad was built through there in 1906. Later a line ran from Cave Springs to Fayetteville.
Image of the Kansas City and Memphis Train Depot in Cave Sring at its dedication in 1906
After the railroad many more stores came to town. Bill Zirenberg built a canning plant and Bob Sikes and Bill Rozer had an apple evaporator.
The Cave Springs Progress, a weekly newspaper, was started in Cave Springs in 1911. It later became The Star.
A bank was founded about 1908.
From ads in the Cave Springs Star we read of the City Barber Shop; Cave Springs Prod. Co.; Cave Springs Tel. Co., John Shaffer Mgr.; Jepson and Tabor Blacksmithing; Farmer's Gro., J. Catching Mgr.; Bardwell Drug; Bohart Land Co.; Cave Springs Lumber Co.
The railroad was taken up in 1918. The bank closed in 1929. Cave Springs has Highway 112 for its main street.
This view of Cave Springs shows a dirt street where blacktop goes through the town on Highway 112. The picture was taken in 1908.