Historic Markers Across Alabama

The Legend of Noccalula

Marker ID:  
Location: in the Noccalula Falls Park on Noccalula Road (State Road 211), Gadsden, Alabama
County: Etowah
Coordinates: N 34° 2.443    W 086° 1.277
  34.04071666    -86.02128333
Style: Mounted **
Waymark: None


White settlers in the hills of Virginia, Kentucky, Tennessee, North Carolina, and South Carolina pushed the Cherokee Indian tribes into North Alabama. The Cherokee in turn encroached upon Creek Territory. There were sporadic battles between the tribes.

Black Creek Falls had long been a trading station and ceremonial ground. Legend is that Noccalula, a beautiful daughter of a Cherokee Chief, had been promised by her father to a Creek sub-chief as an exchange for peace between the Nations. It is related that the princess could not bear to become the wife of a Creek warrior as she loved so deeply a brave of her own tribe.

Instead of being married, on her wedding day she jumped to her death on the rocks of the Black Creek Falls - later to become known as Noccalula Falls. The Indian sign language which is prominently inscribed on the rocks in the Noccalula Falls area confirms that Princess Noccalula did jump to her death at a point near the location of the monument now erected honoring the Indians who once inhabited this area.

It is known definitely that Line Creek and Big Wills Creek to the Coosa River in Etowah County - "and from there as far east as a man could walk in a day" was the boundary line between the Creek and Cherokee Nations at the time white men first came into the territory. The name of the county, Etowah, most of the streams and many of the now existing community names were contributed by the Indians. The land plats throughout portions of the county are described on both sides of Big Will Creek to this respected boundary line. There is much irregularity in the property plats as the lines meander along the banks of the steams.

This monument dedicated in honor of the first Americans and the heritage of our People.

This 21st Day of September, 1969, A. D.

End of The Legend of Noccalula