CENTENNIAL HISTORY OF GREENE COUNTY
On November 5, 1833, Governor John Pope approved an act of the Legislature which provided that: "All that portion of the County of Lawrence lying east of a line beginning where the southern boundary line of the said County of Lawrence crosses the River Cache, thence up the middle of the main channel of said Cache, to a place known as the three forks of the Cache, thence a due north course till it intersects the constitutional line dividing the State of Missouri from the Territory of Arkansas, (shall) be, and the same is hereby, erected into a separate and distinct county, to be called the County of Green."
It will be noticed that in this act the name is spelled without the final "e," but as the county is supposed to have been named for Nathaniel Greene, one of the American generals in the Revolutionary war, somebody unofficially corrected the spelling. The county is situated in the northeastern part of the state; is bounded on the north by Clay County; on the east by the State of Missouri; on the south by Craighead County; on the west by the counties of Lawrence and Randolph, and has an area of 561 square miles. The surface includes ridge, valley and smooth upland, well adapted to agricultural purposes. The county is well drained by the Cache and St. Francis rivers and their tributaries.
When the county was established, the temporary county seat was located at the house of Benjamin Crowley. Commissioners were appointed to locate a permanent county seat and they selected a place called Paris, about five miles northeast of the present Town of Gainesville. About 1848 it was removed to Gainesville and remained there until October 7, 1884, when the County Court issued an order for its removal to Paragould. The first county officers were: L. Brookfield, judge; L. Thompson, clerk; James Brown, sheriff; G. Hall, surveyor; J. Sutfin, coroner. No treasurer was elected until 1838, when James Ratchford was chosen.
Greene is divided into the following townships: Blue Cane, Breckenridge, Bryan, Cache, Clark, Collier, Crowley, Evening Shade, Friendship, Hays, Hopewell, Hurricane, Jones, Lake, Main Shore, Poland, Reynolds, St. Francis, Salem, Shady Grove, Spring Grove, Sugar Creek and Union. Paragould is a city of the second class. Delaplaine, in the northwestern part; Marmaduke, in the northeastern part; Walcott, about ten miles west of Paragould, are incorporated towns. All are interested in the lumber industry and are trading centers. Bethel, Blanchard Springs, Brighton, Finch, Gainesville and Halliday are flourishing villages. Two lines of the Missouri Pacific railway system—the St. Louis Southwestern and the Cache Valley railroads—furnish transportation facilities to nearly every section of the county. In 1920 the population was 26,105, an increase of 2,253 in ten years.