Journal Entry Essay

1254 words - 5 pages

IntroductionWhen the continent of North America was first colonized, there was a long lasting conflict between the Native Americans and the white settlers. The areas that were settled first by the white settlers became overcrowded; this forced the new settlers that were arriving to settle in the outlying lands, which belonged to the Native Americans. The Native Americans were not willing to leave their land for the white settlers (McGill, 2005). McGill (2005) states “The United States government created many oppressive, anti-Indian land-reform policies throughout the years between the war of 1812 and the Civil War.”The goal of the land-reform policies was to remove the five tribes that lived on the land that was located east of the Mississippi River, so that it could be settled by white settlers. The five tribes were to be moved to land that was located in the west, which was dry and arid (McGill, 2005). McGill (2005) states, “The Proclamation of 1763 forced colonists to remain east of the Appalachian Mountains, and all land west of this natural barrier was reserved for Native Americans. However, by the 1800’s, American cities were growing and the settlers were itching to move westward onto Native American lands.” The routes that the Native Americans would be moved along would become known as the Trail of Tears.Journal EntryToday, our tribal leaders told us of the white men getting Chief Black Hawk, Leader of the Fox and Sauk tribes, to move his people west, across the Great River. Our leaders told us how chief Black Hawk’s people found the conditions of this new land unfavorable and out of desperation, he led his people back to their homeland. We were told that when Black Hawk’s people returned, they were met by the white man’s army. Everyone that could not stay ahead of the troops was killed. In the year 1832, the two tribes were defeated, Black Hawk was captured and forced to sign a treaty. The treaty stated that Black Hawk had to move his remaining people west of the Great River (McGill, 2005). We are living in constant fear that the white men will do the same to our people.Back in 1820, our people passed a constitution. One of its laws stated that any sale of Cherokee land was punishable by death. Our leaders passed this law, so that our land would remain our own. In 1828, the white man said that our law was invalid. In 1831, our leaders went to what the white men call their supreme court to ask them to allow our people to keep our land and laws. Our leaders were told that the Cherokee were not United States citizens and had no right to appeal to their Supreme Court. Finally, in 1832, the white man’s Supreme Court said that the white man’s laws had no power in Cherokee territory (McGill, 2005).We have learned that the white man’s President Jackson has coerced a small group of Cherokee people to sign a treaty. The treaty gives our land, here in what is known to the white men as Georgia,...

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