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Etowah County, located in the northeastern part of Alabama, has a rich history. Here are seven interesting facts about this county's past:

1. The name "Etowah" is derived from the Native American word "ituwa," which means "a way through the mountains." The indigenous peoples who inhabited the area were part of the Cherokee Nation, whose Trail of Tears passed through Etowah County in the 1800s.

2. Etowah County was officially established on December 7, 1866, after the Civil War. Prior to this, the area was part of the Cherokee Nation and then the state of Georgia.

3. During the early 20th century, Etowah County was a hub for the iron and steel industry. The Alabama Power Company constructed a dam on the Coosa River, which facilitated hydroelectric power production, supporting the growth of local industry. The county was also home to several textile and manufacturing mills.

4. Etowah County has connections to the legend of the outlaw Jesse James. Legend states that James and his gang robbed a bank in nearby Attalla in 1889. However, no firm evidence proving James was in the area exists.

5. Noccalula Falls, located in Gadsden, is one of Alabama's most famous natural attractions. Legend has it that Chief Gadsden's daughter, Noccalula, leapt to her death into the falls rather than marry a man she did not love.

6. In 1963, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. visited Gadsden as part of his campaign against segregation and discrimination. During his visit, he was arrested and placed in the city jail.

7. The Gadsden Museum of Art, housed in a historic building downtown, showcases local and regional artwork. The museum also offers educational programs for all ages, including camps, workshops, and exhibitions.

Etowah County's history is rooted in Native American culture, the iron and steel industry, and stories of legends and outlaws. From the natural beauty of Noccalula Falls to the cultural offerings of the Gadsden Museum of Art, this county offers a glimpse into Alabama's past and present.

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