The Trail of Tears…

While travelling to Jasper, Arkansas with hubs and rock climbing son, I became aware that we were on the Trail of Tears.


Forever homeschooler that I am I tried to remember some of the details of the trail.

The government had forcibly ousted the Cheyenne Nation and other Native Americans, Chickasaw, Creek and Seminole, from their ancestral homes in North Carolina, Tennessee, Georgia and Alabama and forced them to relocate to Oklahoma in 1838 along what was to become known as The Trail of Tears. 

A distance of 1000 miles.

It is estimated that 1/5 of the Cherokee nation died.

The Government never paid the displaced Native Americans the $5 million promised to them in the Treaty of New Echota.

General Scott delivered a proclamation to the Nation on May 10th 1838 saying that, “every Cherokee, man, woman or child…must be in motion to join their brethren in the far West.”

My friend Marcia Washburn tells a compelling story in her music book, Beethoven Who?

In 1831 the Choctaw Indians were the first of several tribes to make the trek along The Trail of Tears to Oklahoma. It was the coldest winter on record, many of the Choctaws did not survive because of inadequate clothing and lack of food.

Not many years later the Irish poor were suffering from hunger because of diseased potatoes.  A great empathy was felt by the Choktaws who knew what it was like to go hungry and without and individuals made donations totaling $170 in 1847 to send across the ocean and assist the Irish peasants.

The bond between these two nations is still strong today!

Sometimes it takes courage to reach out to someone who is not like us.

God gave us all life along with our treasure, gifts and talents.  Are they ours to keep or should we share them with our fellow travellers?

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