The north tower of Old Main shines like a beacon from the hilltop campus in Fayetteville. The University of Arkansas, the flagship campus of the University of Arkansas System, was founded in 1871 on Ozark Mountain land described as "second to none in the state of Arkansas," looking out toward the historic Fayetteville square and the wooded hills north and south of town.
The university is both the major land-grant university in Arkansas and the state university. It came into being as a result of the Morrill Land-Grant College Act of 1862. Federal land sales provided funds to establish new colleges devoted to agriculture and the mechanic arts, scientific and classical studies, and military tactics for the "liberal and practical education of the industrial classes." Today, the University of Arkansas continues emerging as a nationally competitive, student-centered research university serving Arkansas and the world.