Tahlequah, Oklahoma

This location in modern-day is a city in Oklahoma called Tahlequah. Tahlequah currently is the site of a reservation for the Cherokee nation. This place was where the Cherokee people could finally settle after their miserable and painful forced trek across the country after President Andrew Jackson's signing of the Indian Removal Act in 1830 uprooted their lives. The Cherokee nation traveled just over five thousand miles to reach this destination, and nearly three thousand lives were lost in the march known as "The Trail of Tears." Oklahoma, when the Cherokees settled there originally, was mostly untamed and wild. The Cherokee people faced only more discrimination and conflict from fur traders and other native tribes when they arrived in Oklahoma. They also were supposed to be under the care and protection of the federal government once they reached Oklahoma, but the government cared very little about their well-being. A government contractor was supposed to give the Cherokees sustenance rations, but the contractor realized that they could generate more profit by giving the Cherokees rancid meat and weevil-infested flour, but still charge the government full price. The Cherokees were seen as less-than because of their race; they were barely treated like people, and the government did not care about them at all.

“Cherokee Removal.” Wikipedia, Wikimedia Foundation, 7 Jan. 2020. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cherokee_removal#:~:text=Cherokee%20who%20were%20removed%20initially%20settled%20near%20Tahlequah%2C%20Oklahoma. Accessed 6 October 2020.


Latitude: 35.947629894834
Longitude: -94.967429637909

Timeline of Events Associated with Tahlequah, Oklahoma

Date Event Manage
28 May 1830

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, guides.loc.gov/indian-removal-act#:~:text=The%20Indian%20Removal%20Act%20was,many%20resisted%20the%20relocation%20policy. Accessed 6 Oct. 2020.