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Building A Narrative

As many settlers moved into the lands and created opportunities, it
also ruined the lives and civilizations of many American Indians. As the the
United stated expanded their territory, it also brought them closer and closer
to American Indians. According to the Indian removal act of 1803, It is legal
for the president to exchange any district within Us territory, which are
owned by the United States, which can enable the Indian claim to that land.
This Is saying that the united states is now allowed control the land rightfully
owned by Indians. Settlers were agitating for the removal of Indians.
On December 3, 1833 President Jackson’s 5th annual message he
ordered “those tribes can not exist surrounded by our settlements and in
continual contact with our citizens is certain. They have neither the
intelligence, the industry, the moral habits, nor the desire of improvement
which are essential to any favorable change in their condition.” December 8,
1829 president Jackson said in his first annual message, “Our ancestors
found them as the uncontrolled possessors of these vast regions. By
persuasion and force they have been made to retire from river to river and
from mountain to mountain.” One year later in 1830 congress passed the
Indian removal act to clear Indians east of the Mississippi river. In President
Jackson’s second annual message he ordered “those tribes can not exist
surrounded by our settlements and in continual contact with our citizens is
certain. They have neither the intelligence, the industry, the moral habits,

nor the desire of improvement which are essential to any favorable change in
their condition.” He told the citizens exactly why he wanted them out.
The Cherokee Indians were not happy when they heard of this, they
new it would be hard later down the road. One Cherokee girl wrote “If we
Cherokees are to be driven to the west by the cruel hand of oppression to
seek a new home in the west, it will be impossible.” The plan was to move
the tribes west to the Indian territory, which later became the state of
Oklahoma. In a message to the congress titled “On Indian removal” president
Jackson praised the act for placing “a dense and civilized population in large
track of country now occupied by few savage hunters.
In Private John G. Burnett’s account he explained his witnessing . I
saw helpless Cherokees arrested and dragged from their homes, and driven
at the bayonet point into the stockades. And in the chill of a drizzling rain on
an October morning, I saw them loaded like cattle or sheep into six hundred
and forty-five wagons and started toward the west. Although some Indians
went along with the removal some resisted. The Cherokees attempted a legal
defense, claiming they were protected from removal by there treaties. When
Georgia refused to recognize there treaty rights, the Cherokees appealed to
the supreme court. In Worcester v. Georgia the court upheld the Cherokees
treaty rights. However, president Jackson refused to enforce the courts
decision. Other tribes such as the Seminoles of Florida and the sauk and fox
Indians of Wisconsin territory, turned to armed turned to armed resistance.
These tribes were nearly wiped out by army troops. The blood of the white

man or the blood of the red man may be spilt, and, if spilt, however
accidentally, it may be impossible for the discreet and humane among you,
or among us, to prevent a general war and carnage, said General Winfield
Scott in his Order to Cherokee.
This experience was very intense. It is illustrated in Elizabeth Watt’s
story
“The soldiers gathered them up, all up, and put them in camps. They hunted
them and ran them down until they got all of them. Even before they were
loaded in wagons, many of them got sick and died. They were all grief
stricken they lost all on earth they had.” In the end, the tribes that resisted
the removal were moved by force. The most famous forced migration was
that of the Cherokees in 1833 on the journey to Indian territory, about 4,000
of more than 17,000 Cherokees died from starvation, disease and harsh
winter weather. This tragic journey is remembered today as the trail of tears.
In the Indian removal map it shows the Indians being moved from New
Echota to Cherokee creek on the trail of tears in 1835- 1838.