The Chief Ladiga Trail was named for a Creek Indian leader who signed the Cusseta Treaty in 1832. Under the terms of that agreement, the Creeks gave up claim to their remaining lands in northeast Alabama. Because he had signed the treaty, Ladiga was allowed to select some land in Benton County for his wife and himself. A year after the treaty, he sold part of his holdings for $2,000 to a group of speculators headed by Charles White Peters. That land later became Jacksonville. After selling the land, Ladiga and his wife moved to the Cherokee Nation and settled near what is now Piedmont. His cabin stood until about 1900, and he is buried in a grave near his homeplace.
Jacksonville, first called Drayton, was established in the early 1800's on the site of Creek Indian Chief Ladiga's trading post. In 1834 the town was renamed in honor of Andrew Jackson, seventh president of the United States.
As first county seat of Calhoun County, Jacksonville remained the center of local government until 1899 when the county seat moved to Anniston.
The Jacksonville Section of the Chief Ladiga Trail extends eight (8) miles for Warren Drive, south to intersection of the CSX Railroad in Maxwellborn, north. The property was acquired by the City of Jacksonville from the Norfolk Southern Railway in 1996.