Arp is a city in southeastern Smith County. The area was occupied as early as 1868.
The International-Great Northern Railroad was built in 1872 and the small community was a stop on the line that became known as Jarvis Switch. Commercial development began in Arp in 1897 when a truck and fruit farmer named J. W. Melton moved to the area from Troup and began shipping tomatoes to northern markets.
In 1898 a post office was established as Strawberry. A year later the town was renamed Arp after a popular newspaper editor named William Arp. As it grew, the population of Arp consisted primarily of small farmers and the city became a shipping point for fruits and vegetables. A peach referred to as "Arp Beauty" was developed by local commercial nurseries.
Arp began to flourish and in 1936 saw a population of 2,500. With World War II the city's population dropped to approximately 1,000 and there were seventy businesses. Today the population is a bit over 900.