Wayside Exhibit of the Trail of Tears

Great State & Old Army Roads

Some of the earliest wagon roads in Western North Carolina were built to facilitate Cherokee Removal. North Carolina built a section of the Great State Road to connect the town of Franklin to the site of Fort Butler. In June and July 1838, more than 1,500 Cherokee prisoners traveled this road as they departed their homeland. The Old Army Road, between present-day Robbinsville and Andrews, was constructed in May 1838 to allow troops to transport Cherokee prisoners out of the Cheoah Valley area. The road followed a much older Cherokee trail. Sections of both the Great State Road and the Old Army Road remain intact and visible.

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