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Alabama Historical Commission, Alabama SHPO
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Fort Toulouse/Fort Jackson

History is alive and outside at Fort Toulouse-Fort Jackson. Here Native Americans, Spanish explorers, French soldiers, English and Scottish traders, American settlers, and modern archaeologists have all left their mark.  Frequent living history events showcase a recreated 1751 French fort, recreated Creek Indian houses, and the partially restored 1814 American Fort Jackson. A 1,000-year-old Mississippian Indian mound, the William Bartram Nature Trail, and an early-19th-century house weave even more strands into this colorful tapestry of Alabama's earliest days.

An annual fall event, Frontier Days, brings engaging characters like Magician Rodney the Younger to entertain and educate Alabama's school children. 

In 1717, when this region was part of French Louisiana, the French built a fort near the strategically vital junction where the Tallapoosa and Coosa Rivers form the Alabama River. The fort was primarily a trading post where Indians exchanged fur pelts for guns and household items. There were no battles at the post as French diplomacy forged allies with the natives. The surrounding Indians, commonly referred to as Creeks, wanted peace so they could trade with both the French and British.

The wall of the fort facing the Coosa River washed away in 1747 and a third fort built in 1751 using a palisade of pointed logs. The French lost the French and Indian War and the fort in 1763. The site was abandoned by the French and the lands reverted to native occupation.

Few vestiges of the French post were visible when a new large earthen fort was erected in 1814 and named in honor of General Andrew Jackson. The Treaty of Fort Jackson, signed here that year, marked the formal end of the bitter Creek war phase of the War of 1812.

Today visitors can see an A.D. 1100 Mississippian Indian mound, a recreation of the 1751 French Fort Toulouse, and the partially restored 1814 American Fort Jackson.  

Fort Toulouse-Fort Jackson is also home to many natural wonders. William Bartram, a famed 18th century botanist and friend of Benjamin Franklin, visited the site in 1776 creating notes and drawings of the area's flora and fauna.

The nature trail offers wonderful bird watching opportunities. During the spring and fall, migrants are present thought out the site. During the winter months, spotting the Fox Sparrow and Rusty Blackbird is simple, as well as the common Chipping, Song, Savannah, Field, and White-throated Sparrow plus the Dark-eyed Junco. Also present during the winter are the Hermit Thrush, Blue-headed Vireo and the Yellow-belled sapsucker woodpecker.

The summer months bring out the petite Northern Parula, and the Summer Tanager, add to that the many breeding Acadian Flycatchers and Fort Toulouse is a bird watcher's year-round place to visit.

The Graves House, a Carolina Tidewater Cottage built between 1825 and 1830 in Lowndes County, Alabama, serves as the site's visitor center and museum.  Books and souvenirs may be purchased and site artifacts may be viewed at the visitor center.

Site Director: Ove Jenson
Phone: (334) 567-3002
Email: ove.jensenahc@gmail.com

Admission:
Adult: $2
Child (6-18): $1
Please call the museum at 334-567-3002 for event, boat ramp, camping, RV, and other fees.

Hours:

The park is open from sunrise to sunset. The visitor center from 8am-4pm.

Regular Programs

  • Monthly living history programs - include the French period and the early American period.
  • Monthly meetings of the Historic Blacksmiths.
  • French and Indian War Encampment - held annually in April re-enacts the time period of the war between the French and the British.
  • Alabama Frontier Days - held annually in November depicts life on the frontier from 1717 to 1820.

FRONTIER DAYS TEACHER PACKETS   

Public Archaeology - annual program focuses on archaeological features of the site to laboratory analysis of artifacts found during excavations.

Directions

Located at 2521 W Fort Toulouse Road, Wetumpka, AL 36093.  Just off U.S. 231 in Wetumpka


Site Features

  • 39-unit RV campground with select sites for group camping
  • Boat launch on the Tallapoosa River
  • Picnic pavilion and open picnic areas (link to pavilion reservation form)
  • Bartram Nature Trail


Historic Preservation