The Trail of Tears

Courtney Lee
Honors History 10
Mrs. Teat
28 April 2010
The Trail of Tears
The Trail of Tears was a removal route of Native American tribes from the southeast to the state that is now Oklahoma. They were forced to take this route by orders of President Andrew Jackson. The removal was endorsed when Congress passed the Indian Removal Act (Trail…). The trail stopped in Oklahoma. About 100,000 Native Americans were moved along this trail (Minges, 2). The Choctaw, Chickasaw, Muscogee, Seminole, and Cherokee were the Five Civilized Tribes that were forced to travel the Trail of Tears (Birchfield, 26). The Five Civilized Tribes faced many hardships while traveling this trail, some even fought against the forced removal, and the people removed had to adjust to new life and land after they were moved to the stranger area.
The first of the Five Civilized Tribes to be removed was the Choctaw. The Choctaw were originally from Mississippi. This tribe was chosen to be moved first because they were former allies with the United States. With this, the government thought the removal of this tribe would get the whole process going well (Birchfield, 27). The Choctaws knew that the removal could not be avoided, so a faction of the tribe negotiated the best terms they could in the Treaty of Dancing Rabbit Creek (Birchfield, 27). This treaty was the first of removal treaties. Under the terms of the treaties made between the United States Government and the Native Americans, the tribes owned the land that they were being sent to (Birchfield, 27). The United States’ Army enforced the removal and guided the tribes along the trail (The Story…). The removal took place in the winter of 1831 through 1832, unfortunately (Birchfield, 27). The Choctaws suffered greatly because of the harsh winter conditions. The severe weather caused many to freeze to death, while others became fatally ill (Birchfield, 28). “The Choctaws walked for twenty-four hours barefoot through the snow and ice before...