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Visit the home of The Nocatula Legend

Updated on May 6, 2017
Shannon Ballard profile image

Shannon has worked in radio for over 20 years. In her spare time, she enjoys photography, traveling, and exploring historic sites.

If you love traveling and visiting unique sights, I highly encourage you to stop by Tennessee Weslyan College in Athens, Tennessee to see these sculptures, honoring the legend of Nocatula. The sculptures are on campus but easily accessible.

The Nocatula Legend is one of love and loss. An English officer from nearby Fort Loudon was wounded. He befriended an Indian Chief whose daughter, Nocatula, nursed him back to health. The English soldier fell in love with Nocatula and they were married. He was accepted into the tribe and given the name of Connestoga, meaning “The Oak". But danger was near because a jealous former suitor of Nocatula was enraged by her new love and attacked Connestoga, stabbing him. Realizing her love was dying, Nocatula pledged her undying eternal love to Connestoga. She then plunged a knife into her chest, killing herself alongside her love.

Before Connestoga and Nocatula were buried here, the Chief put an acorn in Connestoga’s hand and a hackberry in Nocatula’s hand, symbols of undying love. Legend has it that from the acorn and the hackberry, two trees grew and stood on this spot for over 150 years, serving as testimony of the eternal love of Connestoga and Nocatula.


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