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Trail Of Tears

Uploaded by phreakz24 on Jul 02, 1999

On September 15, 1830, at Little Dancing Rabbit Creek, the Chiefs of the Choctaw Nation and representatives of the U.S. met to discuss the impact of a bill recently passed by the Congress of the U.S. This bill, with all the same good intentions of those today who believe they know better than we how to conduct our lives, allowed for the removal of all Indian peoples to the West of the Mississippi River. It had been made clear to the Choctaw, that the Whites in Washington cared little for our situation, that either we willingly moved, or by military force we would be moved. We were not ignorant savages, but industrious farmers, merchants, and businessmen of all types. We were educated people, many were Christians. We had an organized system of government and a codified body of law. Some of these people were not even Indians, many strangers and orphans had been taken in over the years. The Chiefs and Warriors signed the treaty, realizing they had no option. For doing this the government officials guaranteed, in the body of the treaty, safe conveyance to our new homes. (Do not forget for a moment that in this treaty, the Choctaw traded 10.3 million acres of land east of the Mississippi for 10.3 acres in Oklahoma and Arkansas that we already owned under previous treaties) Further, it included provisions and monetary annuities, to assist the people to make a new start. One half of the people were to depart almost immediately, the rest the next year. After the signing of the treaty, many saw their land and property sold before their own eyes. The "conveyances" promised turn out to be a forced march. At the point of a gun, the pace killed many of the old, exposure and bad food killed most. Rotten beef and vegetables are poor provisions, even for the idle. Many walked the entire distance without shoes, barely clothed. What supplies were given had been rejected by the whites. This cannot directly blamed on the government, nearly all of this was done by unscrupulous men, interested only in maximizing their profits. They government's fault lies in not being watchful of those taken into their charge. Many of the old and the children died on the road. At each allowed stop, the dead were buried. Hearing of this many escaped. They knew that as they signed the rolls,...

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Uploaded by:   phreakz24

Date:   07/02/1999

Category:   American History

Length:   4 pages (951 words)

Views:   1594

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