It is documented that the Cherokee Indians migrated south from the Great Lakes region around the 15th century or later. The Cherokee tribe was one of the largest Native American tribes eventually settling and occupying the southeast portion of what was to become the United States. The tribe was highly religious and spiritual. They considered warfare to be a polluting act and warriors were required to go thru a purification ritual by a priest before they could reenter the Cherokee village. In 1830, the Cherokee Indians were forcibly removed from their homeland by the very government the Cherokee Indians had supported during the Revolutionary War. The Cherokee had fought alongside the Tennessee Militia under then Colonel Andrew Jackson. It was President Andrew Jackson, who through his Indian Removal Act, forced the Cherokees on a 1,000 mile march to the land where they were ordered to live. This journey was later called the Trail of Tears. This paper will tell how the Cherokee lived before their removal, look at events that led up to their removal, explain the conditions of travel, and tell what has happened to the Cherokee after the Trail of Tears.
The native people of the North America lived for hundreds of years in peace. However, in 1540 the every day lives of the Native Americans came to an alarming halt. It was in that year that Hernando de Soto came in contact with the native people of North America. From then on the natives, known as Indians, would come in contact with settlers from around the world that would be after their land. They would eventually adopt some of the foreigners’ ways. They would even go as far as to involve themselves in some of the colonial wars. This would not prove good for some because the Indians on the losing side of a war would lose some of their land.
During the nineteenth century as many as one hundred thousand Indians were moved westward. The Indians from five different tribes were removed. The removed tribes were the Cherokee, Chickasaw, Choctaw, Creek, and the Seminoles. The removal of these Indians mostly occurred during the decade of the Indian Removal Act if 1830. The one Indian tribe that was most devastated by this relocation was the Cherokees. This group of people experienced one of the most horrific removals in our nation’s history. “The Cherokee removal was named Nunna dual Tsung( Trail Where They Cried)”. To us it is known as the Trail of Tears.
The Cherokee Indians were a unique people. It was said that “they never bow to any other creature”. When they spoke, they did so one at a time. When the speaker was finished, he or she would fall silent and listen to the other. When Europeans began to come on to the scene, the Cherokee came up with name for them, “ugly whites”. Cherokee men loved to do three main things: play ball games, go hunting, and engage in warfare. The ball games would be played “town against town”. The players were subjected to harsh rules which limited their diet before ball games....