By Danny Crownover
A sprawling subterranean city was recently uncovered in Noccalula Falls Park in Gadsden.
The discovery was announced by archaeologists in a press release this morning:
“On Monday, March 14, 2022, an archaeology crew was checking on the many petroglyphs and carvings on the walls in the waterfall gorge at Noccalula Falls Park in Gadsden. Crew member Brian Crimmins was checking in between the crevices when the ground he was standing on started to buckle.
“I’m a pretty big guy, so the area I stepped on just didn’t support my build,” said Crimmins in an interview with local media outlets. “When I knelt down to look further down the crack, I fell several feet. I was pretty embarrassed at the time, but now I’m really happy that it happened.”
“After Crimmins was removed from the hole, crew members were shocked to find a tunnel. This unexpected discovery prompted the archaeologists to bring in Dr. Dennis Poliferno, a noted archaeologist and historian from Alabama University.
“Under Dr. Poliferno’s guidance, a series of expeditions were made into the mile-long tunnel from March 15 to 24. The tunnel beneath the falls led to a massive underground city that is believed to have been constructed by early Native Americans, specifically Cherokee Indians. The city is believed to be around 350 years old. The subterranean metropolis is filled with spacious passageways that form a maze-like pattern beneath the mountain. At the center of the city is an underground lake that evidently provided fresh water for the Native Americans.
“Although the excavation of the city is still ongoing, initial reports indicate that archaeologists have discovered hundreds of domiciles, an intricate palace for the chief and a large open area similar to a town square
“The discovery of the city upends decades of scholarship on the history of the Cherokees at Noccalula Falls. For years, historians have maintained that the Cherokee did not have an extensive presence and that the story of the Cherokee “princess” that jumped over the falls did not happen. Carvings in the Cherokee’s Sequoyah language found in the underground shelter proved that the incident did indeed happen. The new-found underground Cherokee village of Tsiya’hi was widely considered to be a seasonal hunting camp, not a year-round residence.
“The existence of a tunnel linking the underground city was particularly intriguing to Dr. Poliferno, who has been leading the excavation team. He believes that this was a big historical significance and discovery find.
“The Treaty of Calhoun in 1819 ended all Cherokee claims to the Noccalula Falls area, and it appears that the Cherokee were forced to abandon the city after the signing of the treaty. The underground community was lost to history, until now.”
For information about visiting the underground city at Noccalula Falls, don’t check back here. This entire story has been an April Fools’ Day joke! To the best of The Vagabond’s knowledge, there are not any subterranean cities located beneath Noccalula Falls Park. However, there are plenty of wonderful things to see and do above ground!
Contact The Vagabond at firstname.lastname@example.org.