Arkansas Wine Country and
St. Mary's Church
by: Bobby McDonald
Steeped in rich history and surrounded by beautiful scenery, the Arkansas Wine Country is a wonderful place to visit, in Northwestern Arkansas. Altus, located on the Arkansas River was first founded by coal miners, who came to the area to mine the rich coal deposits, located in the mountains.
This statue on the downtown square of Altus pays tribute to
the coal miners that located to the area.
However, it was the arrival of German and Swiss farmers, in the 1880's that led to the area's popularity, today. That's when Catholic immigrants located to the area and founded St. Mary's Church, located high on a hill, overlooking the Arkansas River and backed by Magazine Mountain. Among these immigrants were vintners from Switzerland and Germany, and they began the vineyards that have become the popular attractions of today.
The climate in the area is conducive to growing grapes and with the help of Mr. Joseph Bachmann, who experimented with varieties that would lend themselves to the local area, the vineyards flourished. Today, the mountain is home to Mt. Bethel Winery, Post Family Wineries, Wiederkehr Winery, and Chateau Aux Arc, as well as a number of other family owned wineries in the area.
The area offers a unique experience of wine tasting, beautiful scenery, and the grand St. Mary's Catholic Church, as it plays host to thousands of visitors each year.
Enjoy these photos of the Altus, Arkansas Wine Country, and St. Mary's Catholic Church:
Enjoy a Visit to Arkansas Wine Country!!!