In 1717, when this region was part of French Louisiana, the French built a fort near the strategically vital junction where the Tallapoosa and Coosa Rivers form the Alabama River. The fort was primarily a trading post where Indians exchanged fur pelts for guns and household items. There were no battles at the post as French diplomacy forged allies with the natives. The surrounding Indians, commonly referred to as Creeks, wanted peace so they could trade with both the French and British.

Fort Toulouse, a re-creation of the last or 3rd French fort built between 1749 and1751, and is a National Historic Landmark. The wall of the fort facing the Coosa River washed away in1747 and a second fort was built in 1751 using a palisade of pointed logs. The French lost the French and Indian War and the fort in 1763. The site was abandoned by the French and the lands reverted to native occupation.

Few vestiges of the French post were visible when a new large earthen fort was erected in 1814 and named in honor of General Andrew Jackson.