November 18, 2018
Jackson and the removal of American Indians
Imagine being forcefully removed from an area you once called home. A place where time went by at a leisurely pace. A place where everything you knew and had been there, your people, family, and friends. Imagine all that torn apart, taken away, and relocated to an area of no knowledge. Everyone’s pain, anger, and confusion. All of this just because of some individuals who wanted your land; the place you call home for themselves for reasons you didn’t understand. As harsh as it may seem it has happened and what I’m talking about is Andrew Jackson’s removal of Native Americans back in the early to mid-nineteenth century. His decisions and actions are what I am going to be investigating.
Andrew Jackson signed the Indian Removal Act of 1830 on May 28, 1830. The purpose of this act was to remove Indians that were in the southeast portion of the United States. He wanted to move them west of the Mississippi river. Any Indians on United States land were subjected to removal since they were on United States owned land. He gave his Seventh Annual Message to Congress: 2 government document he states many reasons why he passed the law and how it could benefit the Indians as well.
The was a letter excerpt of letter from Gov. George R. Gilmer of Georgia to President Andrew Jackson, June 17, 1830 Gold in Cherokee Nation “The gold region is situated very near the thickly inhabited part of the frontier part of the State. . .
Since the discovery of gold in the Cherokee country, the opinion very generally prevailed that those who engaged in digging for it violated no right except that of the State; and that, after the passage of the law extending the jurisdiction of the State over that country, the Government of the United States would have no authority to enforce the non-intercourse law. What effect the proclamation, prohibiting all persons, both Indians and whites, from digging gold, may have in allaying the excitement among the persons who have been removed as intruders, is very uncertain. It is probable that it may prevent an immediate attack upon the Indians so employed, from the expectation that they will be restrained by the authority of the State.
I shall be compelled to resort to the tedious process of the courts for this purpose, the laws of the State not having invested the governor with the power to protect the public property by military force.
In the meantime, it is very desirable that the President would direct the officers commanding the United States troops to prevent intrusion upon the property of the State by the Indians, at the same time defending the occupant rights of the Indians from intrusion by the whites.”. From this excerpt we can assume Andrew Jackson may have used this a reason to why he signed the bill, although it is not clearly stated I am willing to assume he may have. In the Indian Removal of 1830 in all sections there are reasons to why he did it as well, reasons and ways that it benefited both whites and Indians.
Jackson, Andrew. “Seventh Annual Message to Congress: 2.” In Civil Rights in America. American Journey. Woodbridge, CT: Primary Source Media, 1999. U.S. History in Context (accessed November 16, 2018). http://link.galegroup.com.lib-ezproxy.kilgore.edu:2048/apps/doc/EJ2163000169/UHIC?u=txshracd2518&sid=UHIC&xid=42df6e38.
Jackson, Andrew. “Seventh Annual Message to Congress (1835).” In The Native American Experience. American Journey. Woodbridge, CT: Primary Source Media, 1999. U.S. History in Context (accessed November 17, 2018). http://link.galegroup.com.lib-ezproxy.kilgore.edu:2048/apps/doc/EJ2156000285/WHIC?u=txshracd2518&sid=WHIC&xid=b122f805.
Congress, U.S. “Indian Removal Act of 1830.” In The Native American Experience. American Journey. Woodbridge, CT: Primary Source Media, 1999. U.S. History in Context (accessed November 17, 2018). http://link.galegroup.com.lib-ezproxy.kilgore.edu:2048/apps/doc/EJ2156000019/WHIC?u=txshracd2518&sid=WHIC&xid=d630bfa6..
Gilmer, George R. “Letter to President Andrew Jackson.” In The Native American Experience. American Journey. Woodbridge, CT: Primary Source Media, 1999. U.S. History in Context (accessed November 17, 2018). http://link.galegroup.com.lib-ezproxy.kilgore.edu:2048/apps/doc/EJ2156000281/WHIC?u=txshracd2518&sid=WHIC&xid=719b0df9.