Mike McNeill is publisher and editor of

We’ve cycled back onto the website one of our favorite promotional ads, which we call “A Live Town.” It summarized an article we found years ago that was published in the January 28, 1880 edition of the Columbia Banner, a weekly newspaper published in Magnolia. The original article had 10 points that we mashed into six due to space limitations. Even 142 years later, the original article remains one of the best we’ve ever read on the topic of local economic development. It is republished in full:

Recipe for Making a Live Town

1. Sell your building lots at a reasonable price.

2. If you can afford to do so, donate a building lot for some large business enterprise and thereby enhance the value of town property.

3. Induce business men to locate in your town.

4. Patronize the business men of your own town.

5. Always sum up your own expenses when you visit places outside of your own town to buy goods.

6. Speak well of worthy public enterprises.

7. If anything should be undertaken that may be of benefit to the town do not speak ill of it to others because you happen to be prejudiced against it.

8. Speak well to strangers of your town and people.

9. If you have surplus money do not invest in far off speculations, but give yourself and town the benefit of it, by establishing some profitable factory.

10. Encourage your newspaper by subscribing for, advertising in, and paying for it.

Be sure to follow your outdoor heat precautions. We don’t want anyone falling out.

We’ll have more on the Emerson PurpleHull Pea Festival later in the week, but we note that the tiller competition has been moved to 5 p.m. Saturday. Make your plans accordingly.

One year ago, we reported that Bobby Hinson had been ruled competent to stand trial in the death of his mother. CLICK HERE to read the story.

We’re amending a previous statement made this week. Further U.S. 82 widening in Columbia County, and the construction of a new railroad overpass across U.S. 82 west of Waldo, are not on the state’s current lists for its next three bid lettings through November. One or both projects may be added, but they are not presently on the list.

Hurry up and wait.

There's a rumor that a Braum's restaurant is coming to Arkadelphia inside the former Western Sizzlin' next to Interstate 30.

Mike McNeill is publisher and editor of Email him at or call him at 870-904-3865. Any opinions expressed in this column are his own. “The people were quite pleased/for the outlaw had been seized/and on the whole it was a very good year there for the undertaker.”

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