The St. Clair Times

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December 28, 2014

Letter: Historic site on the river should receive federal designation

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Posted: Thursday, January 16, 2014 12:00 am | Updated: 2:53 pm, Wed Jun 11, 2014.

To the Editor :

Sometimes the obvious has to be stated in order to get it on the fast track to becoming a reality.

Ten Islands, located at Neely Henry Dam on the Coosa River between Ragland and Ohatchee, was the site of Ft. Strother during the War of 1812. Gen. Andrew Jackson used this as a supply depot during his campaign against the Redsticks of the Creek Tribe. There is also a cemetery there containing the remains of some of his soldiers. Not only this but, the site is also where a Civil War battle took place when Confederate troops encountered raiding Union cavalry trying to destroy Janney Furnace across the river in Calhoun County.

Today there are also recreational facilities there, in the form of a picnic, swimming area and boat launch on the river.

First of all one would think the Federal Government would want the graves of the soldiers of the War of 1812 marked out of respect and remembrance of their service to this nation. Secondly, the building of a replica of Ft. Strother would be a tourist attraction bringing revenue into St. Clair County and the State of Alabama. It would also be a potential site for another annual reenactment of the War of 1812 much like the one of Ft. Mims in Mobile County and the one of Horseshoe Bend near Daviston, Ala.

As there is an annual reenactment of the Battle of Ten Islands and people visit Janney Furnace on a regular basis, throw in all the boaters, fishermen, swimmers and campers to this spot and St. Clair County or Calhoun County and especially the State of Alabama should consider building a motel or hotel here to maximize the potential revenue profit that this spot offers. This is too good of a money making attraction to let it sit idle, plus it’s the right thing to do in honor of all who died there.

 

Billy E. Price, Ashville

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