Fort Payne is a city in DeKalb County, Alabama, United States. At the 2000 census the population was 12,938. The city is the county seat of DeKalb County. It bills itself as the "Official Sock Capital of the World. " In the 19th century this was the site of Willstown, an important village of the Cherokees who relocated to Tahlequah, Oklahoma during the Cherokee Trail of Tears.