Fall Line Road

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United States  Gotoarrow.png  Migration  Gotoarrow.png  Trails and Roads  Gotoarrow.png  Fall Line Road

At the southeastern edge of the Piedmont is the (water)fall line, where rivers drop to the coastal plain. Towns grew at the fall line because cargo on boats had to be portaged around the waterfalls which also served as an important early source of water power. Mills built to harness this resource encouraged the growth of many towns. The larger rivers were navigable up to the fall line, providing a trade route for these mill towns.[1]

The Fall Line Road (or Southern Road) was the road built to connect these growing mill towns.

As roads developed in America settlers were attracted to nearby communities because the roads provided access to markets. They could sell their products at distant markets, and buy products made far away. If an ancestor settled near a road, you may be able to trace back to a place of origin on a connecting highway.

Historical Background



(Northeast to Southwest)

  • Fredericksburg, VA: Rappahannock
  • Richmond, VA: James
  • Petersburg, VA: Appomattox
  • Roanoke Rapids, North Carolina on the Roanoke
  • Smithfield, North Carolina on the Neuse River.[citation needed]
  • Fayetteville, North Carolina on the Cape Fear River.[citation needed]
  • Cheraw, South Carolina on the Pee Dee River.[citation needed]
  • Camden, South Carolina on the Wateree River.[citation needed]
  • Columbia, South Carolina on the Congaree*Augusta, GA Savannah
  • Milledgeville, Georgia on the Oconee River.[citation needed]
  • Macon, Georgia on the Ocmulgee River.[citation needed]
  • Columbus, Georgia on the Chattahoochee River.[3]
  • Tallassee, Alabama on the Tallapoosa River.[citation needed]
  • Wetumpka, Alabama on the Coosa River.

Settlers and Records

No lists of settlers who used the King's Highway are known to exist.


  1. Wikipedia contributors, "South Carolina," Wikipedia: the Free Encyclopedia at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/South_Carolina (accessed 20 January 2011).