Indian Removal Act

In the spring of 1830, United States President Andrew Jackson signed into order the Indian Removal Act. This act forced Native American tribes out of the land they were already living in because that land was considered to be a part of the American state. Jackson wanted this new "American"  land to be settled and tamed by those who were considered American citizens (primarily white men). In signing this act, Jackson promised the Native Americans that they could live in the mostly unsettled lands west of the Mississippi, however, he made it clear that they were not welcome to stay within American borders. As an incentive, Jackson promised the native tribes that if they left their homelands willingly, the government would help them move to their new homes and give them material goods to make their lives easier. He also promised them that they would be under the protection of the United States government forever. Because of these promises, a handful of tribes left willingly. Most tribes did not immediately follow Jackson's instruction, however, as they had signed treaties with the United States government before, and it never ended well for the tribes. This caused many tribes to be removed with force. As a direct result of this act, the "Trail of Tears" occurred, where many native people lost their lives journeying from their homelands to the untamed west. 

Drexler, Ken. “Indian Removal Act: Primary Documents in American History” Library of Congress, 22 Jan. 2019,,many%20resisted%20the%20relocation%20policy. Accessed 6 Oct. 2020.

Associated Place(s)

Event date:

28 May 1830

Event Source: