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Frame The Importance of

Commercial Truck Insurance in Toccoa, GA

  • Let's face it - truckers in America have always been the backbone of our great country. They still are in modern times. On any given day, thousands of trucks traverse our highways and local roads, delivering goods and products on time so that businesses and consumers have what they need to live life. And while commercial trucking can be an incredibly lucrative way to make a living and put food on the table, it can also be risky and expensive.
  • Whether you're the owner of a fleet, an independent trucker, or have a business that uses big rigs to transport goods, you need commercial trucking insurance to protect you and your client's investments, shield you from liability, and more.
  • That's where working with a reliable truck insurance agency comes into play. Unfortunately, for many commercial truck insurance providers, serving the needs of truckers is low on the proverbial totem pole. At Independence Insurance Agency, nothing could be further from the truth.

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percent The Commercial Truck

Insurance Agency in Toccoa, GA You Can Trust

Much like you pride yourself on running a successful trucking business, Independence Insurance Agency prides itself on its years of experience providing truck insurance for hardworking men and women across the country. And in our experience, insurance rates for truckers are just too high - so high, in fact, that they eat away at their bottom line, making it more difficult to run a business and make a profit. Fortunately, at Independence Insurance Agency, we provide truckers the freedom they need from astronomically high insurance rates so they can stay on the road and keep driving America forward.

As one of the most trusted commercial trucking insurance agencies in the U.S., we understand the challenges that you face daily as a trucker. We also know how important it is to protect your business. That's why we go above and beyond to find you the best-priced coverage available, whether you're an operator, own a small fleet, a large fleet, or something in between.

Commercial Truck Insurance Toccoa, GA

We Put Truckers First Because Others Don't

 Truck Insurance Toccoa, GA

Truckers across the country choose to work with Independence Insurance Agency because we put their needs first before anything else. As experts in transportation insurance, we proudly offer a range of quality insurance products that are both practical and affordable for them. Our industry-leading carriers provide coverage that caters to the unique challenges faced by the trucking industry, ensuring that your business is protected at all times.

At our core, we are committed to finding the best possible price for your coverage without compromising the quality of service you deserve. The truth is, we understand how essential truckers are to the United States and take pride in making their insurance experience more streamlined and affordable.

One way we do so is by simplifying the insurance process. Our transportation specialists take the time to understand your specific needs and budget to tailor a comprehensive plan that works for you. You won't ever have to worry about cookie-cutter plans or uninterested agents when you work with our commercial trucking insurance agency. We take an educational approach to ensure that the entire big rig insurance process is quick, painless, and easy to understand. If there's something you don't understand, we're happy to take the time to explain. After all, the success and safety of your business are on the line.

Looking to the future, we are committed to providing innovative new products that cater to the ever-changing needs of truck drivers. As your one-stop shop for commercial trucking insurance, we are dedicated to your success, one policy at a time.

If you're a commercial trucker looking to ensure your rig, you can rest easy knowing that Independence Insurance Agency provides:

  • Affordable Trucking Insurance Plans for Any Budget
  • Exemplary Customer Service
  • Seasoned Transportation Specialists Who Customize Plans to Your Needs
  • A+ Carriers Across the Country
  • Simple, Easy Quote and Bind Process
  • Multiple Insurance Carriers Quoted to Find You the Best Rates
  • Truck Insurance for New Ventures

Call us or send us a message today to learn more about the best 18-wheeler insurance options for your trucking business.

chart The Commercial Truck

Common Types of Big Rig Truck Insurance in Toccoa, GA

At Independence Insurance Agency, we offer several types of insurance coverage for local, intermediate, and long-haul trucking needs. Here are just a few categories of trucking insurance coverage that our agency offers.

As the foundation of your insurance policy, liability coverage is required by law in most states in the U.S. It provides coverage for damage or injuries caused to properties or other people if your 18-wheeler is responsible for the crash. Without liability coverage, it's almost impossible to drive a truck or run a trucking business without major legal consequences.

Having physical damage coverage is an essential component that shouldn't be overlooked. This insurance is responsible for covering the expenses related to repairing or replacing your truck in situations such as accidents, theft, vandalism, and other damaging events. By having this coverage, you can rest assured that your business won't be affected significantly by unexpected incidents, and you can continue running your operations smoothly even in challenging times.

For trucking companies, the goods they transport are crucial to their operations. To protect these goods from damage, loss, or theft while in transit, cargo insurance is essential. This coverage provides much-needed peace of mind for both you and your clients, allowing you to reimburse clients for any losses sustained while protecting your reputation and brand identity.

Non-Trucking Liability Insurance is designed to cover property damage or bodily injury that may occur during personal time when the driver/truck is not under dispatch. This coverage can be applied with or without a trailer and is added to a commercial policy as an endorsement.

While Independence Insurance Agency has built a reputation of excellence in serving the needs of truckers, we also offer general liability. Also known as Truckers General Liability, this coverage insures for bodily injuries or property damage that happen due to business activities that are NOT the cause of operating a truck. It covers accidents that occur in parking lots, rest stops, also while loading or unloading. General liability can also cover losses related to theft and vandalism. Most brokers and shippers will require this coverage to work with you.

Bobtail insurance is a type of coverage that is comparable to non-trucking liability, which is designed to offer protection when driving a truck without a trailer attached. This is commonly referred to as "bobtailing." With bobtail insurance, the tractor is covered at all times, even when it is not attached to a trailer, regardless of whether or not the truck is under dispatch.

Trailer interchange insurance is a must-have if you're involved in a trailer interchange agreement. This essential coverage offers protection for trailers owned by other parties that you're using under a contractual agreement. It covers damages caused by collisions, fire, theft, and vandalism, providing assurance to all parties involved.

Curious whether our commercial truck insurance agency in cityname, state offers additional coverage? The following options can be bound in your insurance policy:

  • Business Interruption Insurance
  • Reefer Breakdown Insurance
  • Occupational Accident with Contract Liability Insurance
  • Rental Reimbursement Insurance
  • Underinsured or Uninsured Motorist Insurance
  • Towing Insurance
  • Electronics Insurance
  • Much More

Three plus 3 Safe Driving Tips to

Lower the Cost of Truck Insurance in Toccoa, GA

Keeping your drivers safe on the road is crucial not only for their own well-being but also for the safety of other motorists and the financial stability of your business. The Department of Labor has identified the trucking industry as one of the most hazardous sectors in the U.S. In fact, trucking and logistics fleets are known for their high injury and fatality rates. By improving how safely your truckers drive, you can help reduce expenses related to claim payouts, accidents, and insurance premium hikes.

Whether you own a large fleet or you're the owner and operator of a single rig, keep these safe driving tips in mind to help lower your insurance costs.

Implement Preventative Maintenance Plans

Ensuring the safety of your drivers begins with the safety of their vehicles. Trucks and tractor-trailers that do not receive regular maintenance, such as oil and brake pad changes, are more likely to experience breakdowns while on the road. Telematics devices provide real-time insight into engine and odometer data, including fault codes.

This information enables your mechanics to create comprehensive preventative maintenance schedules based on mileage, history of previous breakdowns, days, and more. Additionally, they can receive immediate notifications for critical fault codes. By implementing routine maintenance and proactive repair schedules, you can ensure that your vehicles are in top condition, minimizing the likelihood of breakdowns, which can help reduce the cost of trucker insurance.

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 Trucking Insurance Toccoa, GA

Practice Defensive Driving

This approach aims to mitigate the risk of fatal crashes and injuries by proactively identifying and responding to potentially dangerous situations and making informed decisions while driving. By adopting defensive driving techniques, drivers can reduce their likelihood of accidents, thereby minimizing the need for expensive repairs, claim payouts, and increased insurance premiums.

Some of the easiest ways for you or your drivers to practice safe driving include:

  • Be Wary of Blind Spots: Operating a reefer or tractor-trailer means driving high off of the ground, which can make visibility limited, especially in blind spots. To check your blind spot, look over your shoulder and out of your windows while changing lanes.
  • Be Ready for Emergencies on the Road: It's important for drivers to be ready for unexpected situations when driving, especially during long trips. They should be equipped to handle emergencies such as poor driving conditions or big rig breakdowns.
  • Use the Three-Second Rule: Truck drivers should try to maintain a three-second gap between their vehicle and the car in front of them. This means that the truck driver should reach a certain point on the road three seconds after the car in front of them has passed that same point.
  • Always Use Right and Left Turn Indicators: It's important for drivers to always use their turn signals when changing lanes or exiting highways, even if they don't see any other cars around. This is not only required by law, but it also reduces the chances of accidents occurring on the road.
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 Commercial Liability Insurance For Truckers Toccoa, GA

Find Ways to Prevent Distracted Driving

According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), distracted driving is the primary reason behind truck driver accidents. Any activity that takes a driver's attention away from the road or the steering wheel is considered distracted driving. Distractions can come in various forms, such as eating while driving or gazing at a billboard outside the window. However, the most frequent form of distracted driving is the use of cellphones, specifically texting while driving.

Assuming you or your driver's rigs are equipped with dual-facing cameras, try reviewing footage of an unsafe driving incident. Coach your drivers on ways to correct their unsafe behaviors or look up ways to do so yourself if you're the one operating the big rig. The bottom line is that when your drivers aren't distracted, they drive safer. And when they drive safer, the cost of 18-wheeler insurance in cityname, state can be reduced.

phone Call Now
 Commercial Truck Insurance Quote Toccoa, GA

Ensuring the safety of your drivers begins with the safety of their vehicles. Trucks and tractor-trailers that do not receive regular maintenance, such as oil and brake pad changes, are more likely to experience breakdowns while on the road. Telematics devices provide real-time insight into engine and odometer data, including fault codes.

This information enables your mechanics to create comprehensive preventative maintenance schedules based on mileage, history of previous breakdowns, days, and more. Additionally, they can receive immediate notifications for critical fault codes. By implementing routine maintenance and proactive repair schedules, you can ensure that your vehicles are in top condition, minimizing the likelihood of breakdowns, which can help reduce the cost of trucker insurance.

 Low Priced Commercial Truck Insurance Toccoa, GA phone Call Now

This approach aims to mitigate the risk of fatal crashes and injuries by proactively identifying and responding to potentially dangerous situations and making informed decisions while driving. By adopting defensive driving techniques, drivers can reduce their likelihood of accidents, thereby minimizing the need for expensive repairs, claim payouts, and increased insurance premiums.

Some of the easiest ways for you or your drivers to practice safe driving include:

  • Be Wary of Blind Spots: Operating a reefer or tractor-trailer means driving high off of the ground, which can make visibility limited, especially in blind spots. To check your blind spot, look over your shoulder and out of your windows while changing lanes.
  • Be Ready for Emergencies on the Road: It's important for drivers to be ready for unexpected situations when driving, especially during long trips. They should be equipped to handle emergencies such as poor driving conditions or big rig breakdowns.
  • Use the Three-Second Rule: Truck drivers should try to maintain a three-second gap between their vehicle and the car in front of them. This means that the truck driver should reach a certain point on the road three seconds after the car in front of them has passed that same point.
  • Always Use Right and Left Turn Indicators: It's important for drivers to always use their turn signals when changing lanes or exiting highways, even if they don't see any other cars around. This is not only required by law, but it also reduces the chances of accidents occurring on the road.
Commercial Truck Insurance Toccoa, GA phone Call Now

According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), distracted driving is the primary reason behind truck driver accidents. Any activity that takes a driver's attention away from the road or the steering wheel is considered distracted driving. Distractions can come in various forms, such as eating while driving or gazing at a billboard outside the window. However, the most frequent form of distracted driving is the use of cellphones, specifically texting while driving.

Assuming you or your driver's rigs are equipped with dual-facing cameras, try reviewing footage of an unsafe driving incident. Coach your drivers on ways to correct their unsafe behaviors or look up ways to do so yourself if you're the one operating the big rig. The bottom line is that when your drivers aren't distracted, they drive safer. And when they drive safer, the cost of 18-wheeler insurance in cityname, state can be reduced.

 Truck Insurance Toccoa, GA phone Call Now

check light FAQs About

Independence Insurance Agency

If you're looking for a commercial trucking insurance agency for your business, chances are you have some questions - and we've got answers. Keep reading to learn more about some of the most commonly asked questions we hear from truckers like you.

Why go with a "jack of all trades" when you can work with specialists who focus exclusively on transportation insurance? We have excellent relationships with major trucking insurance carriers and, as such, can provide the best assistance and reasonable rates.

Typically, companies will look at claims that date back three years or less.

We proudly work with more than 20 carriers to provide our clients with the most advantageous options at competitive prices, catering to the needs of owner-operators and big fleets alike.

Permit filings are typically done by insurance companies on the next business day. Federal (FMCSA) filings are completed online and updated immediately, while some states may take up to three weeks to process.

Independence Insurance Agency: Committed to the Trucking Industry

There's no question about it - you've got to protect your staff, your rig, and your trucking business with insurance. But choosing the right insurance partner isn't always easy. Thankfully, with Independence Insurance Agency by your side, you can rest easy knowing you're covered no matter where the road takes you. If you're in need of a commercial truck insurance agency in Toccoa, GA that caters to truckers like you, pick up the phone and contact one of our transportation specialists today. That way, you can get back on the road with confidence tomorrow.

 Trucking Insurance Toccoa, GA

Latest News in Toccoa, GA

Yellow Caboose Ready to Depart Downtown Toccoa

Downtown Toccoa’s iconic train caboose is about ready to depart.Yesterday, work began to remove the yellow train car from its moorings in the parking lot at the corner of North Sage and East Tugaloo streets. As the caboose was loaded onto a flatbed truck yesterday afternoon, several residents paused to comment on the landmark’s long history in the community.The caboose was brought to Toccoa by the VanderWoude family after they purchased the adjacent building at the corner of North Sage and Doyle Street from the City...

Downtown Toccoa’s iconic train caboose is about ready to depart.

Yesterday, work began to remove the yellow train car from its moorings in the parking lot at the corner of North Sage and East Tugaloo streets. As the caboose was loaded onto a flatbed truck yesterday afternoon, several residents paused to comment on the landmark’s long history in the community.

The caboose was brought to Toccoa by the VanderWoude family after they purchased the adjacent building at the corner of North Sage and Doyle Street from the City of Toccoa in 2004 to open the Whistle Stop Antique mall as the sister location to their first store, the Whistle Stop Depot in Franklin, NC.

As the city prepares for construction to begin on the Tugalo Street Greenspace, The VanderWoude family is moving the caboose to a private residence to protect the historic train car, and to open up parking spots for the greenspace, according to city officials.

As previously reported by WNEG News, The City of Toccoa received a Rural Downtown Redevelopment Grant in July of 2022 from the Georgia Department of Community Affairs for the construction of a greenspace.

Then-city manager Billy Morse told WNEG News that the greenspace was planned for the existing Tugalo Street Parking area.

He said, “This is a special opportunity, this is a one-time opportunity that the Georgia Department of Community Affairs is offering for a Downtown Redevelopment Grant. The good news is that the state is going to match our 10 percent with their 90 percent, so all we have to do is come up with 10 percent for our project. What we are proposing with this grant is to create a green space, stage, and restroom facilities in the existing Tugalo Street public parking area, along with complimentary streetscape improvement in the parking lot on the opposite side of this property near the railroad on that side of that parking lot.”

The city is currently accepting bids from qualified general contractors for the “Construction of a new City Park by modifying and partially replacing the existing parking lot at East Tugalo Street (GA Hwy 184), between North Pond Street and North Sage Street, and Rice-Lewis-Gilliard Way,” which is the south alley of the parking lot.

Bids are due by noon on Friday, November 3. The details of the Tugalo Street Greenspace Project are available in the project manual.

Discover Toccoa Falls — One of Georgia's Most Majestic Waterfalls

When you go searching for the best waterfalls to visit in Georgia, you’d expect the best ones to flow through state parks and public lands. But a waterfall, some 19 feet taller than the famous Niagara Falls, flows over rocks at a private college campus in Toccoa, Georgia. This majestic creek-sourced waterfall can be visited by the public, though, seven days a week. Let’s learn about T...

When you go searching for the best waterfalls to visit in Georgia, you’d expect the best ones to flow through state parks and public lands. But a waterfall, some 19 feet taller than the famous Niagara Falls, flows over rocks at a private college campus in Toccoa, Georgia. This majestic creek-sourced waterfall can be visited by the public, though, seven days a week. Let’s learn about Toccoa Falls, one of Georgia’s most majestic waterfalls.

How Big is Toccoa Falls?

Year-round, the stunning Toccoa Falls flows with a powerful volume at 186 feet in height. This beautiful waterfall pumps out millions of gallons per hour, flowing from Toccoa Creek.

What’s Near Toccoa Falls?

Apart from the wildlife all around, like turtles, raccoons, and beavers, you’ll find plenty of natural beauty surrounding Toccoa Falls. The waterfall lies within the college campus of Toccoa Falls College, with the small town nearby. You’ll find shopping, camping, hiking, and other small-town activities in the area. But, honestly, that’s about it. Toccoa isn’t known for its tourism, but rather its campus life support.

Where is Toccoa Falls?

Close to the South Carolina border, in northeastern Georgia, the town of Toccoa, Georgia, rests. Toccoa lies approximately 90 miles away from Atlanta, Georgia, making the location pretty easy for most to visit for a comfortable day trip. The falls themselves rest within the campus grounds of Toccoa Falls College, in Stephens County, Georgia.

The Best Time to Visit the Waterfall

The absolute best time to head to Toccoa Falls is right after a heavy rain. This means the waterfall is fuller and flowing more beautifully than in dry periods. However, folks say there really isn’t a bad time to visit, because the spring sourcing the waterfall has enough force and water volume to keep the waterfall flowing beautifully year-round. If you like a lovely, colorful backdrop, visit in autumn for the fall leaves or springtime for the flowers.

Most folks recommend visiting Toccoa Falls earlier in the day than later, ideally on a weekday. Weekends tend to be more crowded, though not unbearably so. The waterfall portion of Toccoa Falls College closes strictly at 4 pm. Be sure to come at least an hour or so before closing to have enough time to enjoy the park.

How to Visit the Toccoa Falls Waterfall

Nearly hidden from the world, the impressive Toccoa Falls rests within the Toccoa Falls College campus. To get to the falls, you’ll enter campus past the gatehouse, then head straight on along Kincaid Drive to Forrest Drive. You’ll spot a gift shop and parking lot across from a small lake. An old mill rests at the north end of the parking lot.

The waterfall is open to the public on weekdays from 10 am to 4 om and weekends from 12 pm to 4 pm. A small fee of under $5 per person allows you entrance through the gift shop to the trail for the gorgeous waterfall.

What Else Should You Do While in Toccoa, Georgia?

Toccoa, Georgia, welcomes guests with the typically southern charm and friendliness you’d hope for. Indulge in delicious food and wine at local restaurants and wineries in this Blue Ridge Mountains foothill town. Pop in to see the World’s Strongest Man statue (Paul Anderson) or visit the Travelers Rest Historic Site.

You probably won’t manage more than about a day and a half in the small town, but many folks love this location as a nice day-long side trip from other road trips in the area.

Lodging Near Toccoa Falls

If you’re passing through Toccoa, Georgia, but need a place to stay while enjoying the waterfall, you’ll find limited hotel options. A few bed and breakfasts cater to parents coming in to visit their students on campus. You’ll find a few chain hotels, also. You can camp at the Toccoa RV Park and Campground, instead, if rooms are full.

The Dam Break

Unfortunately, Toccoa Falls has a dark page of history to it. On November 6, 1977, five days of continual, heavy rain resulted in the dam at Kelly Barnes Lake above Toccoa Falls bursting. Some 176 million gallons of water instantly surged and flooded the campus below in the space of mere minutes. The early morning flood meant most folks were still sleeping, so those in the pathway were swept away, including 39 individuals who lost their lives that morning.

The dam was never rebuilt, presumably in the hopes of avoiding such a tragedy in the future, and the waterfall now freely flows instead from Toccoa Creek above.

Fun Facts About the Waterfall

FAQs for Toccoa Falls

A few quick FAQs may help you prepare for your visit to Toccoa Falls.

Dogs are permitted on leashes at the waterfall.

Unfortunately, if you’re looking for a spot for water activities, you’ll need to go elsewhere. The waterfall is not open for swimming, fishing, wading, or climbing.

No food is available for sale for non-students or staff on the campus. But you’re welcome to bring along a picnic or snacks to enjoy in the park.

The photo featured at the top of this post is © Diverse Imaging/ via Getty Images

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Nation's Best strikes in Georgia

Nation’s Best, recently ranked 40th in the 2023 HBSDealer Top 150 Industry Leaderboard, has acquired Adams Building Supplies, Inc. with locations in Hartwell and Toccoa, Georgia.This move marks an entry into the Peach Tree State for Nation’s Best.Founded in 1917, Adams is a fourth-generation, two-location business catering to the high-end custom home builder segment with a heavy mix of premium lumber an...

Nation’s Best, recently ranked 40th in the 2023 HBSDealer Top 150 Industry Leaderboard, has acquired Adams Building Supplies, Inc. with locations in Hartwell and Toccoa, Georgia.

This move marks an entry into the Peach Tree State for Nation’s Best.

Founded in 1917, Adams is a fourth-generation, two-location business catering to the high-end custom home builder segment with a heavy mix of premium lumber and building material products.

The financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

“Our continued growth comes from adding best-in-class stores across the country,” said Kevin Pierce, regional vice president for Nation’s Best. “Adams Building Supplies has become a market leader, with well-run pro stores offering top-notch drive-through indoor yards. With locations in Hartwell and Toccoa, they’re also strategically located midway between Nation’s Best locations in the Carolinas, which will only strengthen our network and serve the area even better.”

Sister and brother owners Andrea A. Anderegg and Julian Adams said they are excited for the future of their family business.

“It takes a lot of dedicated people to run a successful business and we’ve been blessed to have a team of trusted managers and associates over the years,” Anderegg and Adams said in a statement issued by Nation’s Best. “We’re thrilled to know that Adams Building Supplies will now be in the hands of an experienced home improvement company like Nation’s Best and that our valued team will continue to be there every day to serve our community.”

Adams Building Supplies are the first Georgia-based businesses for Nation’s Best, now with 51 locations in 15 states.

Earlier this summer, Nationa’s Best acquired Cain Hardware & Lumber located in Carthage, Texas.

That move pushed Nation’s Best to 19 locations in Texas.

As part of Nation’s Best’s strategy, Adams Building Supplies will lease the real estate from the owners, maintain operations under their existing name, and retain the core team overseeing company operations.

Nation’s Best said it will provide the strategic and financial support necessary to drive optimal growth and profitability.

LBM-Network’s Jim Enter served as the advisor to Adams Building Supplies, Inc. during the transition.

The Nation's Best portfolio includes lumberyards, hardware stores, and home centers that continue to fly their own, independent banners with a focus on home improvement retail.

Camp Toccoa and the histories that give us a “sense of place”

In this column, members of Georgia Humanities and their colleagues take turns discussing Georgia’s history and culture, and other topics that matter. Through different voices, we hear different stories.By Jamil ZainaldinAll place has meaning, so long as it can still support memory.The spot of earth upon which we stand has importance if we can remember what once was there. The stories about the places we occupy give meaning to them and thus to our own lives. Sometimes our sense of place bec...

In this column, members of Georgia Humanities and their colleagues take turns discussing Georgia’s history and culture, and other topics that matter. Through different voices, we hear different stories.

By Jamil Zainaldin

All place has meaning, so long as it can still support memory.

The spot of earth upon which we stand has importance if we can remember what once was there. The stories about the places we occupy give meaning to them and thus to our own lives. Sometimes our sense of place becomes so strong that it establishes sacred space.

For many, Camp Toccoa in north Georgia is sacred ground. It was built in the mid-1930s by the Civilian Conservation CorpsFranklin D. Roosevelt’s Great Depression-era project that put millions of young men to work. Intended initially for Georgia’s National Guard, Camp Toccoa was commandeered in 1942 by the U.S. Army to prepare a new kind of soldier. Four regiments of men received their primary training as paratroopers here. During the next three years, 18,000 recruits passed through a space that was filled with hundreds of tents, buildings, training areas, roads, and parade grounds.

Today, we remember Camp Toccoa especially as the place in which that band of brothers known as E Company of the 506th Parachute Infantry Regiment bonded and went on to distinguish themselves during the invasion of Normandy and the siege of Bastogne during World War II.

A winding, slowly climbing dirt road from the camp leads to the top of Currahee Mountain — a three-mile route along which these young soldiers hiked and ran in seemingly endless drills to condition themselves for combat. (A memorial to the 101st Airborne stands at the camp entrance, and five miles away, the Stephens County Historical Society’s Currahee Military Museum in Toccoa tells much more of the story.)

The camp ceased to function as quickly as it had been converted to a military training post. Ownership returned to the state of Georgia, which used it as a juvenile detention center and then a prison for adults before leasing it to a textile mill that eventually closed. Few structures remain from the period of its brief military use: a water tower, a modest single-story structure, a well, fire hydrants, and some curbs that outline former streets. The rest of what was Camp Toccoa is flat, barren land, sprinkled with saplings.

And that would be the end of the story if we were to forget why the camp came into being and if we were to ignore the lives — and deaths — for which those young men prepared themselves in a war that changed the course of human history.

Many would contend that to “learn history” in school is a waste of time. That kind of knowledge, as the saying goes, won’t get you a job. It may be true, but it is also a fact that we pay a heavy price for choosing to forget what came before us and with whom we are thus connected. In that decision to ignore our past we are deeply diminished and made less whole.

Two seemingly paradoxical truths help to define who we are. On the one hand, each of us stands alone. Currahee, the southernmost peak of the Blue Ridge mountain chain that juts from the rolling hills of the Piedmont, takes its name from a Cherokee word meaning “stand alone.” And the young troops who trained on that mountain would yell “Currahee” as they parachuted from their planes. In that moment, they were indeed on their own. And yet, like all of us, they became stronger when they reconnected with their comrades on the ground.

In our world of instant communication, rapid change, and fleeting meanings, the greatest threat to our future is forgetting who we are and what brought us here. Without the sense of place that history provides, the world we inhabit can easily become an alien space of unknown contours and unfamiliar markers. In these “empty” spaces, we are in danger of becoming empty, too, losing our bearings and our sense of responsibility. The stories of those who came before us help us to understand our own unique place in history and encourage us to contemplate what legacy we may leave for future generations.

“Our dead are never dead to us until we have forgotten them,” wrote George Eliot. So true. It is our memory that gives meaning to the Camp Toccoas of our lives.

An earlier version of this column appeared previously under “Jamil’s Georgia.”

Kelly Caudle of Georgia Humanities provides editorial assistance for the “Jamil’s Georgia” columns.

Discover Toccoa Falls — One of Georgia’s Most Majestic Waterfalls

When you go searching for the best waterfalls to visit in Georgia, you’d expect the best ones to flow through state parks and public lands. But a waterfall, some 19 feet taller than the famous Niagara Falls, flows over rocks at a private college campus in Toccoa, Georgia. This majestic creek-sourced waterfall can be visited by the public, though, seven days a week. Let’s learn about T...

When you go searching for the best waterfalls to visit in Georgia, you’d expect the best ones to flow through state parks and public lands. But a waterfall, some 19 feet taller than the famous Niagara Falls, flows over rocks at a private college campus in Toccoa, Georgia. This majestic creek-sourced waterfall can be visited by the public, though, seven days a week. Let’s learn about Toccoa Falls, one of Georgia’s most majestic waterfalls.

How Big is Toccoa Falls?

Year-round, the stunning Toccoa Falls flows with a powerful volume at 186 feet in height. This beautiful waterfall pumps out millions of gallons per hour, flowing from Toccoa Creek.

What’s Near Toccoa Falls?

Apart from the wildlife all around, like turtles, raccoons, and beavers, you’ll find plenty of natural beauty surrounding Toccoa Falls. The waterfall lies within the college campus of Toccoa Falls College, with the small town nearby. You’ll find shopping, camping, hiking, and other small-town activities in the area. But, honestly, that’s about it. Toccoa isn’t known for its tourism, but rather its campus life support.

Where is Toccoa Falls?

Close to the South Carolina border, in northeastern Georgia, the town of Toccoa, Georgia, rests. Toccoa lies approximately 90 miles away from Atlanta, Georgia, making the location pretty easy for most to visit for a comfortable day trip. The falls themselves rest within the campus grounds of Toccoa Falls College, in Stephens County, Georgia.

The Best Time to Visit the Waterfall

The absolute best time to head to Toccoa Falls is right after a heavy rain. This means the waterfall is fuller and flowing more beautifully than in dry periods. However, folks say there really isn’t a bad time to visit, because the spring sourcing the waterfall has enough force and water volume to keep the waterfall flowing beautifully year-round. If you like a lovely, colorful backdrop, visit in autumn for the fall leaves or springtime for the flowers.

Most folks recommend visiting Toccoa Falls earlier in the day than later, ideally on a weekday. Weekends tend to be more crowded, though not unbearably so. The waterfall portion of Toccoa Falls College closes strictly at 4 pm. Be sure to come at least an hour or so before closing to have enough time to enjoy the park.

How to Visit the Toccoa Falls Waterfall

Nearly hidden from the world, the impressive Toccoa Falls rests within the Toccoa Falls College campus. To get to the falls, you’ll enter campus past the gatehouse, then head straight on along Kincaid Drive to Forrest Drive. You’ll spot a gift shop and parking lot across from a small lake. An old mill rests at the north end of the parking lot.

The waterfall is open to the public on weekdays from 10 am to 4 om and weekends from 12 pm to 4 pm. A small fee of under $5 per person allows you entrance through the gift shop to the trail for the gorgeous waterfall.

What Else Should You Do While in Toccoa, Georgia?

Toccoa, Georgia, welcomes guests with the typically southern charm and friendliness you’d hope for. Indulge in delicious food and wine at local restaurants and wineries in this Blue Ridge Mountains foothill town. Pop in to see the World’s Strongest Man statue (Paul Anderson) or visit the Travelers Rest Historic Site.

You probably won’t manage more than about a day and a half in the small town, but many folks love this location as a nice day-long side trip from other road trips in the area.

Lodging Near Toccoa Falls

If you’re passing through Toccoa, Georgia, but need a place to stay while enjoying the waterfall, you’ll find limited hotel options. A few bed and breakfasts cater to parents coming in to visit their students on campus. You’ll find a few chain hotels, also. You can camp at the Toccoa RV Park and Campground, instead, if rooms are full.

The Dam Break

Unfortunately, Toccoa Falls has a dark page of history to it. On November 6, 1977, five days of continual, heavy rain resulted in the dam at Kelly Barnes Lake above Toccoa Falls bursting. Some 176 million gallons of water instantly surged and flooded the campus below in the space of mere minutes. The early morning flood meant most folks were still sleeping, so those in the pathway were swept away, including 39 individuals who lost their lives that morning.

The dam was never rebuilt, presumably in the hopes of avoiding such a tragedy in the future, and the waterfall now freely flows instead from Toccoa Creek above.

Fun Facts About the Waterfall

FAQs for Toccoa Falls

A few quick FAQs may help you prepare for your visit to Toccoa Falls.

Dogs are permitted on leashes at the waterfall.

Unfortunately, if you’re looking for a spot for water activities, you’ll need to go elsewhere. The waterfall is not open for swimming, fishing, wading, or climbing.

No food is available for sale for non-students or staff on the campus. But you’re welcome to bring along a picnic or snacks to enjoy in the park.

The photo featured at the top of this post is © Diverse Imaging/ via Getty Images

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About the Author

Sandy Porter is a writer at A-Z Animals primarily covering house garden plants, mammals, reptiles, and birds. Sandy has been writing professionally since 2017, has a Bachelor’s degree and is currently seeking her Masters. She has had lifelong experience with home gardens, cats, dogs, horses, lizards, frogs, and turtles and has written about these plants and animals professionally since 2017. She spent many years volunteering with horses and looks forward to extending that volunteer work into equine therapy in the near future. Sandy lives in Chicago, where she enjoys spotting wildlife such as foxes, rabbits, owls, hawks, and skunks on her patio and micro-garden.

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