Back to top

West Point Lake Cultural Resources Survey: Final Report (Chambers, Alabama)

Report Number
Year of Publication

This report describes the work conducted for the West Point Lake Cultural Resources Survey and Inventory, a project funded by the U. S. Army Corps of Engineers, Mobile District. The contract goals for the survey are to provide the Corps of Engineers with the following information: 1) locations and descriptions of archaeological and historical sites within the project area; 2) the determination of each site's significance and its eligibility to the National Register of Historic Places; 3) an evaluation of the potential effects of various natural processes and cultural activities on the sites; and 4) recommendations concerning the need for future mitigation. This report includes a discussion of the fieldwork carried out, a description of our analytical techniques, a statement of the results of the survey, and information concerning site characteristics, site location, site size, and components present. West Point Lake is located along the Chattahoochee River within the Piedmont Plateau and covers portions of Troup and Heard Counties, Georgia, and Chambers and Randolph Counties, Alabama (Figures 1 and 2). The dam is situated on the river 5.1 kilometers (3.2 miles) north of West Point, Georgia, 494 kilometers (309 miles) from the mouth of the Appalachicola River at the Gulf of Mexico, and roughly 56 kilometers (35 miles) above the fall line. The lake extends 50 kilometers (31 miles) from the dam to the town of Franklin, Georgia. Original surface elevations along the floodplain of the Chattahoochee near West Point Dam were around 170 meters (560 feet) above sea level. At the northern end of the reservoir, floodplain elevations reached 194 meters K640 feet) above sea level. Ridge tops were generally 46 meters (150 feet) to 76 meters (250 feet) higher than the nearest floodplains. Major tributaries of the Chattahoochee River within the project boundaries include New River, Wehadkee Creek, and Yellowjacket Creek. Four smaller streams in the region include Beech Creek, Bird Creek, Brush Creek. Caney Creek, Cater (or Potato) Creek, Dixie Creek, Glovers Creek, Jackson Creek, Maple Creek, Stroud Creek, Veasey Creek, Whitewater Creek, Wilson Creek, and Wolf Creek. In all, 23,110 hectares (57.775 acres) are included within the project boundaries of the reservoir, but within the normal pool elevation only 10,360 hectares (25,900 acres) are inundated. The remaining land consists principally of Corps of Engineers operation areas, public recreation areas, public service areas, parks, and a large public wildlife recreation area. The project discussed herein was begun in March, 1978, with Dr. Paul R. Fish as Principal Investigator and Dr. Chung Ho Lee as Field Director. In October, 1978, Dr. Lee obtained a position elsewhere and was replaced by Mr. James L. Rudolph. In June, 1979, Dr. Fish left the University of Georgia, and in November of that year Dr. David J. Hally replaced him as Principal Investigator. Field personnel employed during 1979 were Tom Gresham, John Doolin, and Ron Schoettmer. Laboratory and clerical workers during 1979 were John Strnad, Tom Gresham, Leslie Swann, Teri Smith, and Janice Payne.