Removal Of Indians Essay, Research Paper
The decision of the Jackson administration to remove the Cherokee Indians to land west
of the Mississippi River in the 1830 s was more a reformulation of the national policy that
had been in effect since the 1790 s than a change in the policy.
*Assess the validility of this generalization with the reference to the moral, political,
constitutional, and practical concerns that shaped national Indian policy between 1789 and
the mid 1830 s.
The Removal of the Native Indians to the West
Between the 1790 s and the mid 1830 s, the national Indian policy changed in
many aspects. Cherokee Indians were driven out to the west of the Mississippi from their
homeland when the Jackson adminstration confirmed their removal. The cause of this
change in policy was mainly brought up by Andrew Jackson, president of United States of
America during the 1830 s. According to Jackson, he claimed that the actions were made
for the Native Indian s benefit, but he was only doing this because he wanted to control
the amount of land the Indians occupied. He was not only violating Native Indian s rights,
but their rights as a Nation. Before the 1820 s and 30 s, the Indians were treated with
respect and had right as a Nation, but Jackson changed all this when he became the
president of the United States of America.
In 1789, (Doc B) Henry Knox expressed his feelings that the Indians have the right
to possess their land because they were the prior occupants. This was morally right. In
(Doc C), he shows respect towards the Indians by explaining that Indian can live civilized
and be humane. This was true in many aspects. (Doc L) showed that Indians lived a very
civilized life. Many mixed blood Indians were very successful with their farming and lived
very prosperously. Not only that, but they also had slaves to work for them.
Furthermore, in (Doc D) the Intercourse Act in 1802 gave Indians more rights by stating
that no Americans should interfere with Indian land. Any intruders were subject to
punishment. (Doc G) supports this also by stating that intrusion upon Indian land is a
violation. The Cherokees even had their own alphabet system according to the (Doc K).
This showed that they were not barbaric as how the Americans saw them. All of these
morally, practically,constituionally and politically supported the Indians.
All of this was to change with the rise of president Jackson and few other
instigators. In the early 1820 s Calhoun denounced the Indians by refering them as
savages. In (Doc J), he believed that Indians system was too weak and needed radically
change to be successful. He believed that it should be brought upon American s authority
and laws or they will live in misery. He shows complete disrespect for the Indians in (Doc
B) by stating that Indians were against the Americans by not giving up land to them. He
wanted the Indians to possess absolutely no land. Calhoun saw the Indians as his
enemies. Furthermore, Jackson in (Doc O) shows complete disregard of the Indians as a
Nation by announcing that they should follow the states laws if they wanted to stay. This
meant that the Indians would not be able to keep their culture, and their way of life. But
in 1832, (Doc P) supported the Indians, when John Marshall clarified that they were a
distinct tribe and should not be interfered by Georgia. But his decison had little impact
when Jackson ignored it with contempt.. Jackson thought they should take over because
they were superior and needed to expand to the west in order to become wealthier. In
(Doc A), the map shows that Jackson took the last bit of Indian land. He literally drove
them out by slaughtering them in battles when the Indians did not cooperative with his
orders. He could have left the Indians peacefully but his intentions were to get them out
of his country.
The Americans explain that they were doing it for the Indians benefits. They
believe that they were being honest and fair for the Native Indians but in reality, the
United States of America forced relocation of Native Americans. They showed no rights
for the Indian s rights and completely disregarded them as a Nation. This will allow for
the brutal treatments of other cultures and people who occupy the land of the United
States of America, and further mistreatment of the Indians later on.