When Andrew Jackson became president of the United States in 1829, his government took a hard line. Jackson abandoned the policy of his predecessors of treating different Indian groups as separate nations. Instead, he aggressively pursued plans against all Indian tribes which claimed constitutional sovereignty and independence from state laws, and which were based east of the Mississippi River. They were to be removed to reservations in Indian Territory west of the Mississippi (now Oklahoma), where their laws could be sovereign without any state interference. At Jackson’s request, the United States Congress opened a debate on an Indian Removal Bill.
Visited by DeSoto Oct. 13, 1540. Battle crossing mountain stream gorge below town, two Spaniards killed, along with principal Indians accompanying chief. Later historians said located eastern bank Black Warrior River near Sawyerville, previously known as Sawyers Depot, Hale County, at site of dead town Erie. W. Stuart Harris, Dead Towns of Alabama (1977).
The site of Fort Mitchell is now a park in
Russell County, Alabama. The outstanding
historic site features a reconstruction of the
1813 fort, historic burial grounds, a museum
housing a fascinating collection of historic
carriages, a restored 19th century log home
and an impressive visitor center that offers
exhibits, a film and a walk through the history
of the site.
The area where Montevallo is now was once controlled by the Creek Indians. After being acquired in 1814 Jesse Wilson claimed a small hill on the northern bank of the Shoal Creek and created a homestead there, making it the oldest settlement in Shelby County. Wilson’s friends and family followed afterwards and also settled in the area, and a settlement known as Wilson’s Hill developed on the site. The settlement’s location at almost the exact center of Alabama meant it was considered one of the potential sites for the University of Alabama. In an attempt to encourage the university to choose the site the settlement changed its name to Montevallo, which is Italian for the hill in the valley.