historic village site, Arkansas county, southeastern Arkansas, U.S., on the Arkansas River, near its confluence with the Mississippi River. A fort, the first permanent European settlement in the lower Mississippi valley, was built there in 1686 by Henri de Tonty, a lieutenant of French explorer Rene-Robert Cavelier, Sieur de La Salle. It became the residence of the French and Spanish governors and was an important trading post. The Mississippi Bubble, a French financial scheme and development plan that became mired in political intrigue, attracted settlers to the area (1717), but most of them left after the speculative bubble "burst" in 1720.
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