The Bass Reeves Legacy Monument will bridge the past with the present, connecting Reeves remarkable accomplishments with leaders of future generations, and providing tangible recognition of Fort Smith's lasting relationship with the U.S. Marshals Service - the nation's oldest law enforcement agency.
The memory of Bass Reeves will continue to fortify the history of Fort Smith as his monument stands in Ross Pendergraft Park to greet both residents and visitors.
While the monument is the first priority for the Bass Reeves Legacy Inititative, the organization plans to continue its work once the monument is complete. The Legacy Initiative's purpose is to share the Bass Reeves story, to promote leadership among school children, and to celebrate the courage of an African-American slave who overcame overwhelming odds to become one of his generation's most successful lawmen.
NBA Hall of Famer Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, in his book "Black Profiles in Courage", says Bass Reeves is one of his favorite characters because Reeves repeatedly demonstrated honor and integrity in his actions. Academy Award-winning actor Morgan Freeman says his career will be fulfilled only when he can portray Bass Reeves in a full-length feature.