The Arkansas Genealogical Society has an “Arkansas Ancestry Certificate” that they will award to anyone that can prove their ancestors resided in Arkansas during a specific period. There are five classes of the certificate:
Colonial – For an ancestor who resided in Arkansas prior to 1 January 1804
Territorial – For an ancestor who resided in Arkansas prior to 15 June 1836
Antebellum – For an ancestor who resided in Arkansas prior to 6 May 1861
Nineteenth Century – For an ancestor who resided in Arkansas prior to 31 December 1900
Civil War Ancestry – For an ancestor who served in a Confederate or Union Arkansas unit between 1861 and 1865, or applied for an Arkansas Confederate pension, or whose widow applied for such pension, or a Union soldier or soldier’s widow who applied for a U.S. pension while living in Arkansas
These certificates don’t really prove anything. What they do, however, is set a goal for our research. To achieve the certificate, we have to provide an unbroken chain of provable genealogy from ourselves back to the ancestor that lived in the time period. I’m certain I can obtain the Civil War Ancestry and the Nineteenth Century certificate with ease, but getting the others will certainly be a challenge.
Arkansas Genealogical Society. http://www.agsgenealogy.org “Arkansas Ancestry Certificate”. Retrieved from the Internet on 10 November 2011.