Little Rock’s Historic Hillcrest neighborhood began as part of a land acquisition by a group of Michigan investors, led by two young lawyers, H. F. Auten and Edgar Moss. In 1891, these businessmen formed the Pulaski Heights Land Company and purchased 800 acres, mostly small farms, located just west and north of Little Rock’s city limits. Their goal was suburban development and, over the decades to follow, their dream came true. Early in 1891, the first 10 blocks of the Pulaski Heights Addition were platted.
Other than the investors, Pulaski Heights had very few residents, until after 1903, when a streetcar line was extended from downtown Little Rock to the fledgling suburb. What is now called the Hillcrest Historic District was part of this Pulaski Heights development.
Today, Hillcrest has one of the most distinctive neighborhood “personalities” in Little Rock. Many of the homes that date back to the early 1900s still stand in Hillcrest, including the area around south of Lee Avenue and west of Colonial Court. Many of these are Colonial Revival cottages, Bungalows, and one-story “four squares.”
But Hillcrest also includes some magnificent homes dating back to the early 1900s – estate-sized homes, especially along the northern side of the neighborhood on Hill Road and other nearby streets.
Hillcrest contains some of Little Rock's most historic residential and commercial construction, including a town hall building and one of the oldest educational institutions in Arkansas – Mount St. Mary – a Catholic girls’ school. Built in 1927, Pulaski Height Elementary School is also fixture in the neighborhood.
Part of Hillcrest overlooks Allsopp Park, a major city park situated between Hillcrest on the south side and the Riverdale neighborhood to its north. Many enjoy the wooded biking and walking trails winding through the Park.
Hillcrest’s residents cover the spectrum, ranging from young couples to well-established families who have lived in and loved the neighborhood for decades. Hillcrest is delightfully quaint, a bit quirky – and filled with shops, restaurants and coffee bars along Kavanaugh Boulevard. There are special events annually, such as the Hillcrest Harvest Fest in the fall, and a great neighborhood farmer’s market, which takes place along Kavanaugh every Saturday morning year ‘round.
Hillcrest has been used as a model for New Urbanism communities, such as the Village at Hendrix College – an award-winning mixed use development where its residents can live, work, shop, or play, all without leaving the neighborhood. But Hillcrest is one of the country’s original live, work, and play communities.
One of Little Rock’s most charming neighborhoods, Historic Hillcrest has a distinctive flavor that you’re sure to love. We hope to see you there for lunch!
Posted by Susan Reynolds on