This is the largest/oldest tree in Big Spring Park at the base of the Cotter Bridge which is a historic Marsh Rainbow Arch Bridge on the National Register of Historic Places.
The Cotter Bridge spans the White River at U.S. Highway 62. This bridge is a five span bridge and over 1,850 feet long and is a Marsh Rainbow Arch Bridge, which is one of the largest bridges designed by the Marsh Engineering Company. In 1986, the bridge became Arkansas‟ first National Civil Engineering Landmark (less than 50 nationwide) and in 1990, the bridge was added on the National Register of Historic Places. The bridge was opened for use in November 1930 and was a toll bridge until 1938. In December 1976, it was named after Judge R.M. Ruthven who was the primary force in obtaining the bridge.
The tree is located 100 yards downriver from the original ferry landing. Big Spring Park is located under the bridge and has been a popular swimming hole and picnicking location for the area. Cotter was originally an Indian settlement with its unique location at the horseshoe bend in the river and in 1886; white settlers came to Cotter due to the development of the railroad.
Location: Big Spring Park, Cotter
Registration: October 30, 2003
Species: Eastern Cottonwood