Removal of the Cherokee Essay

This essay has a total of 1083 words and 5 pages.

Removal of the Cherokee

In The Cherokee Removal, Perdue and Green show the trials that the Cherokee faced in the
years from 1700 to 1840. This book shows how the Americans tried to remove these Indians
from the southeastern part of the United States. The Cherokees tried to overcome the
attempts of removal, but finally in 1838, they were removed from the area.

The Cherokees lived in the valleys of rivers that drained the southern Appalachians
(Perdue, 1). The British first came into Cherokee country in 1700. They came for two major
reasons: deerskins and war captives. They brought guns and ammunition, metal knives, hoes,
hatchets, fabrics, kettles, rum, and trinkets. They took the Cherokee and made them
slaves. The British built two forts to protect the Cherokees while they were fighting the
enemies of the British. The Cherokees entered the French and Indian War on the side of the
British (Perdue, 6). Attacks on Cherokees by white frontiersmen and duplicity by colonial
officials caused the Cherokees to shift their allegiance to the French. During the war,
the British destroyed many Cherokee towns.

The war the American Revolution caused many British settlers to push westward. These
settlers began to compete with the Cherokees for land. The Cherokee were glad when the
Proclamation of 1763 was put into effect. This prevented settlement west of the
Appalachian Mountains. Most of the settlers became enemies. The settlers attacked the
Cherokees, destroying many towns and killing many people. This attack caused the Cherokees
to end their participation in the American Revolution. The American colonist continued to
take over the Cherokee land.

In 1783, the American Revolution ended. Since most of the Cherokees helped the British in
the Revolutionary War, the Americans needed to make peace with them. Then in1785, the
treaty of Hopewell was signed (Perdue 8). This was a peace treaty between the Cherokee and
the Americans. This treaty defined the Cherokees' boundaries and it gave them the right to
get rid of unwanted settlers. The states of Georgia and North Carolina ignored this
treaty. The people of these states expanded into Cherokee land, and the Cherokees
continued to resist.

The Americans needed to come up with another system. Henry Knox was gave the task to come
up with this new system. Knox came up with a system that would make expansion possible
without detriment to the Indians (Perdue 10). Knox hoped to end the fighting between the
Cherokees and the Americans that was caused by expansion. Knox, along with George
Washington, believed that the Indians were uncivilized. However, this lack of civilization
was cultural, not racial. They thought that the Cherokees could become civilized if they
were taught how to become civilized. They also believed that the United States should buy
the land that the settlers illegally took from the Indians, and strictly obstruct further
encroachment. This new system was called the Treaty of Holston (Perdue 11). It went into
effect in July 1791. This treaty called for the civilization of the Indians. The
civilization program was a major part of this new treaty.

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