One of the first permanent settlers of record in Jefferson County was Joseph Bonne, who brought his Quapaw family from Arkansas Post to live on a pine tree covered bluff on the Arkansas River that would become the namesake and location of Pine Bluff. His crude lodge became an important entry point for travelers and settlers making their way up the river. Several other families, largely of mixed French-Quapaw ancestry, lived along the Arkansas River both before and after the Louisiana Purchase, mainly with land grants issued by the Spanish government shortly before it relinquished the lands to France in 1800.
The first steamboat, the Comet, arrived at Arkansas Post in 1820 and steamboat travel on the Arkansas River began in earnest in the late 1820s. This steamboat travel opened southeast Arkansas for trade and commerce. Territorial governor John Pope approved an act to establish the county on November 2, 1829 and it was named for former president Thomas Jefferson.
Source: The Encyclopedia of Arkansas History & Culture
Lonoke, Arkansas, Lincoln,Cleveland , Grant and Pulaski counties.