“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Cherokee in Colbert County, Alabama — The American South (East South Central)

History of Cherokee

History of Cherokee Marker - Side 1 image. Click for full size.
By David J Gaines, March 2, 2011
1. History of Cherokee Marker - Side 1
Side 1
By 1805, half-blood Chickasaw leaders George and Levi Colbert were operating inns and a river ferry nearby on the Natchez Trace. The Chickasaw Indian Agency was moved to Agency Creek, now Malone Creek, (3.8 miles east) in 1825. Caney Creek Chickasaw School (8 miles east) opened January 15, 1827. The Treaties of 1832 and 1834 forced the Chickasaws to move west between 1837 and 1841. Public auction of Chickasaw lands began in January 1836 at Pontotoc with the future site of Cherokee reserved for James Brown, a half-blood Chickasaw. A stagecoach road was built in 1839 to connect Tuscumbia with Jacinto, MS. Increasing cotton production led to the completion of the Memphis and Charleston Railroad to Cherokee Oct. 27, 1856. The post office was relocated from the former Chickasaw Indian Agency to Cherokee on Dec. 10, 1856 with David C. Oates as postmaster. A train station was erected in 1858. Dr. William C. Cross and John W. Rutland laid out a town around the depot and sold lots. The boundary line between their plantations became Main Street.

Side 2
Early physicians were William Desprez, William C. Cross, and James Houston. The first schoolhouse was located at Brotherton and Second Streets with John Craig as teacher. The first merchants were William Bell, David Lindsay, and Whitt Dean. During the Civil War,

History of Cherokee Marker - Side 2 image. Click for full size.
By David J Gaines, March 2, 2011
2. History of Cherokee Marker - Side 2
Company A of the 16th Alabama Infantry CSA was recruited from the Cherokee area. Several sharp skirmishes were fought nearby between Confederate cavalry and invading Union forces in 1862 and 1863. The original Baptist church was used as a hospital. Union troops camped around the depot for six days in October 1863, and the Confederate army operated a supply base here in 1864. Other Milestones: Alexander House hotel (1880s); Methodist church moved from stage road (1885); Memphis Pike (future Lee Highway) constructed (1890); town’s well drilled and hand pump installed (1890); first telephone placed in hotel (1914); first electricity (1920); and Cherokee Vocational High School built (1923) on land donated by the Lyle-Harris Family. Lime kilns (1866-1942) and asphalt mines (1924-1970) were important local industries. Cherokee was incorporated December 7, 1891.
Erected 2010 by Alabama Tourism Department and the City of Cherokee.
Location. 34° 45.382′ N, 87° 58.374′ W. Marker is in Cherokee, Alabama, in Colbert County. Marker is on Main Street just from 1st Street, on the right when traveling north. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Cherokee AL 35616, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 6 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies.
History of Cherokee Marker in park image. Click for full size.
By David J Gaines, March 2, 2011
3. History of Cherokee Marker in park
Something to Chew on (approx. 2.9 miles away); Bridging Cultures (approx. 2.9 miles away); Levi Colbert Stand (approx. 2.9 miles away); Civil War Skirmish at The Barton Cemetery (approx. 5.3 miles away); Trace Travelers (approx. 5.6 miles away); A Chickasaw Planter (approx. 5.7 miles away); Chickasaw Hospitality (approx. 5.7 miles away); Colbert's Stand (approx. 5.8 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Cherokee.
Categories. Settlements & Settlers
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on March 25, 2011, by David J Gaines of Pinson, Alabama. This page has been viewed 1,102 times since then and 57 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3. submitted on March 25, 2011, by David J Gaines of Pinson, Alabama. • Bill Pfingsten was the editor who published this page.
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