Natchez Trace


Jan van der Crabben
published on 30 May 2014
Sunken Natchez Trace (by Jimmy Emerson, DVM)

The Natchez Trace was a path carved out by Native Americans that links Natchez, Mississippi, with Nashville, Tennessee. The path itself went through several different American Indian territories, including Chickasaw territory.

Originally, animals like the bison carved the Trace out in search of salt licks. Native Americans would go deeper into the wild and make the Trace what it is today.

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American Indians were not the only ones to use the path. It was used by European explorers, and it is speculated that the early explorers had help from the Native Americans, using them as guides on the path. Andrew Jackson led his troops along the trail to the Battle of New Orleans.

As time wore on, boats traveled up the Mississippi River, and the Trace was no longer needed as a route. Eventually, plant growth overcame the lost path and it became wild again. But the Daughters of the American Revolution had a different plan. They reclaimed the route, and in the 1930s, as part of Franklin Roosevelt’s New Deal, workers started paving projects on the Trace. The last 12 miles were finished in 2005. 

Editorial Review This Article has been reviewed for accuracy, reliability and adherence to academic standards prior to publication.

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Cite This Work

APA Style, . (2014, May 30). Natchez Trace. Ancient History Encyclopedia. Retrieved from

Chicago Style, . "Natchez Trace." Ancient History Encyclopedia. Last modified May 30, 2014.

MLA Style, . "Natchez Trace." Ancient History Encyclopedia. Ancient History Encyclopedia, 30 May 2014. Web. 17 Oct 2019.

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