The Trail of Tears and Indian Removal
In 1838, the U.S. Government began to forcibly relocate thousands of Cherokees from their homelands in Georgia to the Western territories. The event the Cherokees called The Trail Where They Cried meant their own loss of life, sovereignty, and property. Moreover, it allowed visions of Manifest Destiny to contradict the government's previous civilization campaign policy toward American Indians. The tortuous journey West was one of the final blows causing a division within the Cherokee nation itself, over civilization and identity, tradition and progress, east and west. The Trail of Tears also introduced an era of Indian removal that reshaped the face of Native America geographically, politically, economically, and socially.