Trail Of Tears Essay Research Paper Trail

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Trail Of Tears Essay, Research Paper Trail of Tears At the conclusion of the colonials’ War of Independence with Britain, during which the Cherokee had fought alongside the British, a treaty was signed in 1786, establishing the boundaries of Cherokee territory. As always, encroachments by European-American settlers continued in violation of this written agreement. A second treaty and another cession of territory was forced on the Cherokee people, sanctioning both existing encroachments as well as anticipated land hunger. In the War of 1812, however, the Cherokee natives refused to join with Tecumseh and the Creek-dominated southern confederacy of tribes, choosing instead to come to the aid of the European-Americans. The Cherokee natives were, in fact, instrumental in

assisting Andrew Jackson’s forces against the Creek at the Battle of Horseshoe Bend, in Georgia. Their loyalty to the Union brought no benefit or protection once the conflict ended (Odur, 8 May 00). Consequently, in 1830, Congress passed the Indian Removal Act, providing for the transplanting of all Indian tribes then east of the Mississippi River, to what is present day Oklahoma. During this semesters history class many topics were discussed regarding the transformation of America between 1770 and 1870. There were numerous interesting topics discussed; however, I found the topic of the uprooting the Native Americans the most interesting. This commentary will examine the circumstances that instigated the injustice better known as the Trail of Tears. Further, it this commentary

will detail how the “five civilized” tribes assisted in the numerous battles the Americans faced, and how they assisted in the settling of present day America. In return, the Native Americans were “sentenced” to the American wasteland, better known as Oklahoma. First and foremost, we must understand what the “five civilized” tribes are and how they got coined with such a title. The tribes: Cherokee, Chickasaw, Choctaw, Creek and Seminole were coined “civilized” because they adapted quickly to European ways. The European ways included Christianizing, English language literacy, abandoning their semi-nomadic way of life, adopted a system of settled agriculture, and developed a notion of private property. (Bailey, p. 280). How did the Native American land and way of

life come into jeopardy? It is simple, greed and “Manifest Destiny,” the theory that America must expand to all reaches. Next, we will examine how and why the American society became compelled to herd the Native America’s up like cattle and ship them to foreign lands. In 1609, the first permanent settlement was formed at Jamestown, Virginia. In the years to follow other settlements were also formed. When white’s first arrived in America the natives helped them adapt to an uncivilized way of life by teaching them B. McCarthy how to farm crops. In addition to this the natives were our trading partners. We commonly traded pots, blankets, metal arrowheads, and alcohol for furs and the Native Americans land. (Brinkley, p. 43) Europeans depended on the natives in order to make

the settlements in the New World profitable. Eventually these settlements were not only trading posts but also actual settlements with women and children, and soon became small towns and even cities. This is when everything started to change. As more and more whites moved to the New World, more and more land was needed to support the colonization. In Virginia, Sir William Berkeley set up a treaty with the natives that installed boundaries in the territory. When these boundaries were broken by whites the natives attacked. Nathaniel Bacon worked up a militia and attacked the natives against Berkeley’s orders. (Brinkley, p. 35) This little skirmish is known as Bacon’s Rebellion and it set the tone for relations between the whites and the natives. Whites wanted to keep moving