Marion County was created November 3, 1835, from Izard County, first called Searcy County, was renamed in 1836 in honor of Francis Marion, a Revolutionary War General. Yellville is the county seat. Prior to its occupation by white settlers, this county seat was an Indian village. It is one of the oldest settlements in Arkansas.
The landscape of Marion County is the rugged and mountainous, Ozark Mountains, inhabited for years by bluff-dwelling Native Americans and, later, by European settlers. One third of the county is under water; therefore, we offer many water activities.
Located in the heart of Marion County is Ranger Boats, and it's also the home of the world famous Turkey Trot Festival. The festival is not only one of the oldest annual festivals in the state of Arkansas, but is also the home of the oldest National Wild Turkey Calling Contest in the Nation. It is sanctioned by the National Wild Turkey Federation. The festival is also home of what many people consider the largest parade in north central Arkansas.
Part of the Buffalo River runs through the county and features camping, hiking, canoeing, hunting, and fishing. The Lower Buffalo Wilderness Area is the state's largest wilderness area. Bull Shoals Lake has 19 parks scattered around its 1,000 mile shoreline. As of the 2000 Census, Marion County has a population of over 16,000 residents.