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A map of the Eastern Cherokee Nation in 1835
A map of the Eastern Cherokee Nation in 1835

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From Horseshoe Bend to the Trail of Tears

Many whites wanted Native Americans removed from their tribal lands in the East. They had a friend in President Andrew Jackson. Jackson pushed the Indian Removal Act of 1830 through Congress. This law required that many Native Americans give up their lands in the East and relocate west of the Mississippi River. A number of tribes did so, but others refused.

The Cherokee Indians, in particular, fought in court against the state of Georgia's attempts to take away their lands, and in 1832 the Supreme Court finally ruled in their favor. Georgia did not have authority over the Cherokee lands, the court said. Do you know what happened to the Cherokees?

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