About REACH

Project REACH is a restoration project undertaken by Black River Technical College.  Thanks to the generous gift of two historic properties from the Jack and Christina French family to Black River Technical College in 2003, a journey of restoration began.

The two donated structures were brought to the attention of BRTC as a result of the Early Arkansas Settlement Study.  This study was funded in part by a grant awarded to the Historic Preservation Alliance of Arkansas with funding provided by the Arkansas Humanities Council and the Department of Arkansas Heritage. In the course of this 2003-2004 study, the Rice-Upshaw House (built 1828) and the Looney-French House (built 1833) were both identified by dendrochronology to have been constructed during the Arkansas territorial period.

Each structure was identified as a unique Arkansas example of early log building traditions.  Both houses, listed on the National Register of Historic Places, were donated, along with significant items of material culture, to BRTC by descendants of the families who built them.

Today, tours and activities take place at the sites.  A pavilion has been constructed at each site and visitors and descendants.

Further Reading