CHICKASAW STATE FOREST
Chickasaw State Forest is located in Chester and Hardeman Counties on the Coastal Plain in West Tennessee. The Resettlement Administration Program purchased the majority of lands making up the forest in 1938; the lands at the time of acquisition were highly eroded and degraded by farming and timber harvesting. The entire project area was deeded to the State of Tennessee in 1955 and the Tennessee Department of Agriculture, Forestry Division assumed responsibility for the portion that is now a State Forest. Approximately 63% of the Forest is in hardwood types, about 29% is in southern yellow pines, and the remainder is in mixed pine and hardwood cover. The Forest is dominated by stands of mature sawtimber. About 35% of the stands are upland hardwoods in excess of 80 years old.
Two state parks surrounding lakes occur within the forest. There are various educational and demonstration areas highlighted with signs throughout the forest. In addition, there are 115 acres of forest set aside as an experimental forest and nursery. There are 8 cemeteries and 4 in-holdings. Large salvage cuts have occurred as a result of 446 acres of forest being blown down by a tornado in 1988 and 300 acres damaged by southern pine beetles in 1986-87. Hunting has been a traditional use of the forest. Other recreational activities include horseback riding, hiking, and camping.
Chickasaw State Forest is located in western Tennessee, spanning over 14,000 acres. This forest has a rich history that dates back thousands of years.
Prior to European settlement, the land that now comprises Chickasaw State Forest was home to various indigenous tribes, including the Chickasaw people. The Chickasaw were one of the larger Native American tribes in the southeastern United States and had established communities in the region. They relied on the forest for hunting, gathering, and other livelihood activities.
With the arrival of European settlers in the 18th century, the Chickasaw and other tribes faced displacement and conflicts over land ownership. The United States government eventually forced the Chickasaw people to cede their lands through treaties, including the Treaty of Pontotoc Creek in 1832.
1. Primitive camping is available at the Chickasaw State Forest.
2. Campsites are first:come, first-served with no reservations required.
3. There's a designated horse camp for equestrian enthusiasts.
4. Camping permits can be obtained from the Forestry Division office in Jackson, Tennessee.
5. Each site has fire rings and picnic tables but lacks water or electricity hookups.