Nancy Ward, Beloved Woman of the Overhill Cherokees, and her son Fivekiller are buried here. Their graves overlook the pastoral landscape along the Ocoee River, near where she operated an inn at Womankiller Ford in her later years. The site is owned by the State of Tennessee and managed by the Hiwassee/Ocoee Hiwassee State Park. See the Nancy Ward Gravesite on the Furs to Factories Trail.Highway 411 E. (halfway between Ocoee & Benton) Benton, TN
Constructed from handmade baked bricks in 1853, the Niota Depot is the oldest standing railroad depot in Tennessee. Now used as offices for the Town of Niota, the depot is open for tours during business hours. While inside, look for gun ports used during the Civil War. Niota’s other claim to fame is its native son, Harry T. Burn. Burn was serving as a Tennessee State Representative when he cast the deciding vote for Tennessee to ratify the 9th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, giving women the right to vote. He made the decision to honor his mother’s request in a letter that asked him to “put the rat in ratification.” Niota is also home to the “Fried Green Tomato Festival.”
The memorials are part of the Sequoyah Birthplace Museum.
Directions to Memorials – From the museum, turn right and follow Hwy 360 to the junction of Hwy 360/Hwy 455. Follow Hwy 455 for about 5 miles, and then turn left onto County Road 461 where you will drive alongside the lake to the memorials. A grave marker notes the burying place of the great Cherokee Indian Chief , Oconostota, at Chota.
No Admission Fee
Hours: Daily, Sunrise to Sunset
A Museum Without Walls
The coming of the Industrial Revolution to the Upland South is one of the nation’s most compelling stories. The Furs to Factories Heritage Trail explores this historic movement and the way it played out in the Tennessee Overhill. The story begins with the Overhill Cherokee fur trade and unfolds with the coming of the railroads, logging, hydroelectric power, and tourism.
Along the trail, you will learn about ordinary people who shaped the land and culture of the Tennessee Overhill, and discover places where the story took place. More About the Furs to Factories Heritage Trail, including Travel Itinerary
150 Years of Copper Mning History
Visit this museum, on the grounds of the Historic Burra Burra Copper Mine, to learn about the history of copper mining in Tennessee, the vast environmental changes that occurred in the Great Copper Basin of Tennessee, and the diverse people who migrated to the area because of the boom in copper mining. Home to the “Annual Miners Homecoming.” Listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
Ducktown, TN 37326
This 1200 acre park, features a reconstructed fort, located on the banks of Tellico Lake.originally built by the British in 1756, when this area was known as the “Overhills” – a designation given to Cherokee communities that rested on the western slopes of the Appalachian Mountains. Explore the barracks, shops and other structures.
Historic Significance: Begun in 1756 and occupied until 1760, Fort Loudoun was instrumental in allying the Cherokee with the English during the most critical years of the French and Indian War. This alliance provided protection for the Southern frontier while the English armies in the North dealt with the French and their Indian allies.
Step inside the Visitor Center to see artifacts that were recovered from the original fort. A short film details the turbulent history that unfolded in and around the fort in the mid-1700’s. The grounds surrounding the fort include walking trails, a beach for swimming, and picnic areas. Living history demonstrations take place throughout the year, with the largest being the “18th Century Trade Faire,” part of the “Great Island Festival,” held in September.
The site was designated a National Historic Landmark in 1965. Ft. Loudoun Historical Background Info
Tellico Blockhouse – The Tellico Blockhouse was a United States fortification used primarily from 1794 until 1807. After Congress passed the “Factory Act” in 1795, the blockhouse was expanded to incorporate a trading post (factory) from which federal agents distributed agricultural equipment and promoted farming practices and mechanical skills to the Cherokees. The intact archaeological remains of the blockhouse are located just across the lake from Fort Loudoun State Historic Area. Visitors can wander among the foundations and look across the lake toward the old Cherokee Nation. View Tellico Blockhouse SketchNo Admission
Hours: 8:00-Sunset daily; Closed Thanksgiving, Christmas, & New Years Fort Loudoun State Historic Area 338 Fort Loudoun Road
Located near Tellico Plains, Tennessee, this road winds alongside the Tellico River as it tumbles through the Cherokee National Forest. Along the way, you will pass by the Historic Tellico Ranger Station, built as a CCC Camp and lovingly restored. Bald River Falls provides a spectacular visual treat. Parking is available at the falls so you can linger, make photographs, and drink in nature’s splendor. Baby Falls attracts kayakers from near and far. The Tellico Fish Hatchery is located upriver. All in all, a beautiful drive
Travel Tips: Cell phone coverage is spotty.
Forest Service Road 210/Tellico River Road
This trail tells the story of land and people and how the Industrial Revolution in the Upland South shaped both. Museums and historic sites reveal the stories of Cherokee settlements, European explorers, fur traders, miners, mill workers, railroaders, and farmers – the ordinary people who came to the Tennessee Overhill to live and work. The “Furs to Factories Trail” leads modern day explorers to the places where this story played out. Chronologically, the story begins with the fur trade, but feel free to start your tour at any point and visit the sites and topics of most interest to you.
Trail Stops (Click on any item below to view or print details.)
15. Niota Depot
Winding through mountains, past scenic rivers, and through small towns, you will discover the rich history of the Cherokee people. Follow National Scenic Byways, quiet highways, and backroads to visit sites that offer a glimpse into the past and a view of the present. Museums, historic sites, and memorials tie the past to the present and a people to their land.