Markers Going Up On Colbert County Military Road Trails

By  | September 9, 2019 | Filed under: News

COLBERT COUNTY-Military Road Trails of Colbert County being marked. Residents will begin to notice new Historic Military Roads being marked this fall, beginning in September and expected to complete during November.   The projects are funded by the Colbert County Development Commission and are designed & installed by Colbert County Historical Landmarks Foundation.  This installation will better inform residents and tourists alike about the original pathways through our County.

Principal roads being marked include the following with military action background:


Jackson Military Road:  to be marked from Littleton to Woodmont Drive, then Dickson St, to North Cave St, to Nashville Ave, to Atlanta St. to Gordon Drive and into Jackson Hollow (Interpretive marker at Gordon Drive, featuring Jackson Ferry Crossing to upstream bank of Cypress Creek).   Cooperative directional signs are planned in Franklin County, Marion County and Lamar County.

Byler Road:  Most of the Byler Road directional signs (about 30) have already been installed.   Hood’s Army of the Tennessee used the Bainbridge – Byler Road in the retreat from Battles of Nashville & Franklin TN; a large Historical Marker is to be installed on Bainbridge Road just a couple hundred yards north of River Road.  Additional signs are planned for Leighton and other locations along Byler Rd.   The Byler Road was built in 1820-1823 under direction of Capt. John Byler of Andrew Jackson’s Army.


Wilson’s Union Army Cavalry Corp: (largest Cavalry ever assembled on North American continent) Invasion of Alabama in Spring 1865.  A 3 prong movement of the 3 divisions that comprised this Cavalry (just under 5000 men & horses in each Division (1st, 2nd & 4th Divisions).  From training grounds stretching from Gravelly Springs to Waterloo,   Crossing of the Tennessee River began on March 11, 1865, into Chickasaw / Riverton.   A prominent Interpretive Marker will be placed in Riverson near the River.  Three routes were taken southward – McCook’s 1st Division took the old Gaines Trace (Fork) Road to Chicsa by the RR tracks, thence to Buzzard Roost Creek Road (aka Gaines Trace Fork) to Russellville via Frankfort.  Long’s 2nd Division traveled the Rose Trail to old Natchez Trace & Lane Springs Road into the west side of Cherokee and there met up with Upton’s 4th Division (containing Wilson and 400 headquarters men).   All Divisions were in or around Cherokee by about March 21st.  Long’s Division traveled on to Russellville via Mountain Mills Road and Upton’s Division traveled to Russellville via Crooked Creek.   Some scouting parties were positioned in the Frankfort Road and Colbert Heights area as they moved across the county.  All divisions were in Russellville on March 23th.  From there, they again assumed a 3 prong movement using the Byler Road (Upton’s, north of Kinlock), Long’s Division went south along the Jackson Military Road, the went to Allen’s Factor to cross Bear Creek, then on to Haleyville and blazed trail called Yankee Trace (now Hwy 5) into Jasper.   McCook’s 1st Division also moved south from Russellville and crossed Bear Creek at Allen’s Factory, then further southward to Forks of Buttahatchee River (Whitehouse community), to Natural Bridge and Eldridge (on Byler Rd), then to Jasper.   From Jasper the Cavalry Corp proceeded to a path of destruction at Elyton (Birmingham), Tuscaloosa (Univ of Alabama) and Selma (the south’s largest armory).

Media Release/Joel Mize

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