6800 Blythe Ferry Ln., Birchwood, TN | 423-339-2769
The Tennessee River Valley was first inhabited by generations of Native Americans, and Meigs County contains many prehistoric sites. The Cherokees later occupied the area until it was ceded to Tennessee in the early 1800s. Most of the Cherokee residents were forcibly removed from the area in 1838 as part of the Trail of Tears, a tragic chapter in American history that removed the Five Civilized Tribes from their southeastern homeland for settlement. Today, the Cherokee Removal Memorial Park at Blythe Ferry interprets and educates the public about the Cherokee Removal and history of the area. A Memorial Wall at the park marks the names of 2,535 Heads of Households from the 1835 Census of the Cherokee Nation, identifying who were forcibly removed. The park includes a visitor center, walking trail and overlook of Hiwassee Island and the Hiwassee and Tennessee Rivers.