General Land Office (GLO) survey data from the Ackerman Unit of the Tombigbee National Forest, MS are used to characterize early 19th-century tree cover in a part of the North Central Hills physiographic province. Archaeological settlement-pattern data indicate that the area was abandoned ca. A.D. 1000 and that early Historic-period settlement was minimal by the time the GLO surveys were done. The GLO data therefore represent forest conditions as they developed in the absence or near-absence of human influence. Tree cover consisted of oak-dominated hardwoods with a non-clustered pine component. The distributions of some hardwood species were related to geological controls. Based on previous archaeological work, the argument concerning minimal human impact can be extended to the entire North Central Hills province, with consequent implications for forest management on federal lands.