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The Trail of Tears was a series of forced Indian removals by the United States government during, but the removal of the Cherokee nation from Georgia, Tennessee, and Alabama is the most famous of these forced marches. While the Cherokee removal is the relocation that is most often associated with the Trail of Tears, but it was not the only one. The Seminoles (1832), the Choctaw (1830), the Chickasaw (1832), the Creek (1832), the Fox (1832), the Sauk and the Cherokee (1835) were all removed from their ancestral lands. Each of these removals resulted an appalling loss of life.
====Why Remove Native Americans?====
Native Americans also held some of the farmlands in the Southeast United States. Several of these tribes had already begun to farm these lands and earnest and make them productive. Both states and settlers wanted to seize these agricultural lands from the Native Americans. The states, such as Georgia, cared little that Native Americans had placed farms on these lands, purchased slaves, or built homes. The tribes did not recognize the states authority over their lands, because they viewed themselves as independent nations.
====Andrew Jackson and
Jackson strongly favored removing the 60,000 Cherokee, Chickasaw, Choctaw and Creek and Seminole (the Civilized Tribes) from North Carolina, Georgia, Alabama, Florida and Mississippi. Indian Removal was one of Andrew Jackson's most important goals. It was so important that during Jackson’s first message to Congress, he asked for a bill and funds to move these tribes west of the Mississippi. Jackson's first major piece of legislation was the 1830 Removal Act.
Despite public opposition - Jackson ensured that Congress passed bills that removed Indians and gave Jackson the ability to set aside Western lands
Jackson believed that removal was “just and humane” because it would leave the Indians free from influence of the states
Jackson was also outraged by the claim by the Cherokees that they were a sovereign nation - unconstitutional and unrealistic
He believed that no new state could be created in the jurisdiction of a state
====Cherokee Legal Opposition====