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President and Henry Knox first U. Secretary of War proposed the cultural transformation of Native Americans. He formulated a policy to encourage the "civilizing" process, and Thomas Jefferson continued it.
He and other agents lived among the Indians to teach them, through example and instruction, how to live like whites. In the 19th century, the Chickasaw increasingly adopted European-American practices, as they established schools, adopted yeoman farming practices, converted to Christianity, and built homes in styles like their European-American neighbors. The Chickasaw signed the Treaty of Hopewell in Article 11 of that treaty states: In , leaders of the Chickasaw signed a treaty ceding all claims to land north of the southern border of Tennessee.
In the midth century, a Scots trader by the name of James Logan Colbert settled in Chickasaw country and lived there for the next 40 years, where he married three high-ranking Chickasaw women in succession. Colbert and his wives had numerous children, including seven sons: Six survived to adulthood Jonathan died young.
The Chickasaw had a matrilineal system, in which children were considered born into the mother's clan ; and they gained their status in the tribe from her family. Property and hereditary leadership passed through the maternal line, and the mother's eldest brother was the main male mentor of the children, especially of boys. Because of the status of their mothers, for nearly a century, the Colbert-Chickasaw sons and their descendants provided critical leadership during the tribe's greatest challenges.
They had the advantage of growing up bilingual. In addition, the two each served as interpreters and negotiators for chiefs of the tribe during the period of removal. Levi Colbert served as principal chief, which may have been a designation by the Americans, who did not understand the decentralized nature of the chiefs' council, based on the tribe reaching broad consensus for major decisions.
An example is that more than 40 chiefs from the Chickasaw Council, representing clans and villages, signed a letter in November by Levi Colbert to President Andrew Jackson , complaining about treaty negotiations with his appointee General John Coffee. In after the state of Mississippi declared its jurisdiction over the Chickasaw Indians, outlawing tribal self-governance, Chickasaw chiefs assembled at the national council house on October 20, and signed the Treaty of Pontotoc Creek , ceding their remaining Mississippi territory to the U.
Between and , the Chickasaw would make further negotiations and arrangements for their removal. Unlike other tribes who received land grants in exchange for ceding territory, the Chickasaw held out for financial compensation: The first group of Chickasaw moved in The Chickasaw gathered at Memphis, Tennessee , on July 4, , with all of their portable assets: Three thousand and one Chickasaw crossed the Mississippi River , following routes established by the Choctaw and Creek.
When the Chickasaw reached Indian Territory, the United States began to administer to them through the Choctaw Nation, and later merged them for administrative reasons.
The Chickasaw wrote their own constitution in the s, an effort contributed to by Holmes Colbert. After several decades of mistrust between the two peoples, in the twentieth century, the Chickasaw re-established their independent government. They are federally recognized as the Chickasaw Nation. The government is headquartered in Ada, Oklahoma. In , as tensions rose related to the sectional conflict, the US Army abandoned Fort Washita , leaving the Chickasaw Nation defenseless against the Plains tribes.
Confederate officials recruited the American Indian tribes with suggestions of an Indian state if they were victorious in the Civil War. The Chickasaw passed a resolution allying with the Confederacy, which was signed by Governor Cyrus Harris on May 25, Up to this time, our protection was in the United States troops stationed at Fort Washita, under the command of Colonel Emory. But he, as soon as the Confederate troops had entered our country, at once abandoned us and the Fort; and, to make his flight more expeditious and his escape more sure, employed Black Beaver, a Shawnee Indian, under a promise to him of.
By this act the United States abandoned the Choctaws and Chickasaws. Then, there being- no other alternative by which to save their country and property, they, as the less of the two evils that confronted them, went with the Southern Confederacy. In this capacity he negotiated several treaties, including the Treaty with Choctaws and Chickasaws in July The treaty covered sixty-four terms, covering many subjects such as Choctaw and Chickasaw nation sovereignty , Confederate States of America citizenship possibilities, and an entitled delegate in the House of Representatives of the Confederate States of America.
In addition, the US renegotiated their treaty, insisting on their emancipation of slaves and offering citizenship to those who wanted to stay in the Chickasaw Nation. If they returned to the United States, they would have US citizenship.
This was the first time in history the Chickasaws have ever made war against an English speaking people. The Chickasaws were first combined with the Choctaw Nation and their area was called the Chickasaw District. Although originally the western boundary of the Choctaw Nation extended to the th meridian , virtually no Chickasaw lived west of the Cross Timbers.
The area was subject to continual raiding by the Indians on the Southern Plains. The United States eventually leased the area between the th and 98th meridians for the use of the Plains tribes.
The area was referred to as the "Leased District". The process of cultural transformation, as proposed by George Washington and Henry Knox , was gaining momentum, especially among the Cherokee and Choctaw. Although the effort was vehemently opposed by some, including U. Congressman Davy Crockett of Tennessee, President Andrew Jackson was able to gain Congressional passage of the Indian Removal Act of , which authorized the government to extinguish Indian title to lands in the Southeast.
In , the Choctaw became the first Nation to be removed, and their removal served as the model for all future relocations.
After two wars, many Seminoles were removed in The Creek removal followed in , the Chickasaw in , and lastly the Cherokee in Prior to , the fixed boundaries of these autonomous tribal nations , comprising large areas of the United States, were subject to continual cession and annexation, in part due to pressure from squatters and the threat of military force in the newly declared U.
As these territories became U. These pressures were exacerbated by U. Andrew Jackson's support for removal of Native Americans began at least a decade before his presidency. The law also gave the president power to pay for transportation costs to the West, should tribes choose to relocate.
The law did not, however, allow the President to force tribes to move West without a mutually agreed-upon treaty. In the years following the Act, the Cherokee filed several lawsuits regarding conflicts with the state of Georgia. Some of these cases reached the Supreme Court, the most influential being Worcester v.
Samuel Worcester and other non-Indians were convicted by Georgia law for residing in Cherokee territory in the state of Georgia without a license. Worcester was sentenced to prison for four years and appealed the ruling, arguing that this sentence violated treaties made between Indian nations and the United States federal government by imposing state laws on Cherokee lands.
The Court ruled in Worcester's favor, declaring that the Cherokee Nation was subject only to federal law and that the Supremacy Clause barred legislative interference by the state of Georgia. Chief Justice Marshall argued, "The Cherokee nation, then, is a distinct community occupying its own territory in which the laws of Georgia can have no force.
The whole intercourse between the United States and this Nation, is, by our constitution and laws, vested in the government of the United States. Andrew Jackson did not listen to the Supreme Court mandate barring Georgia from intruding on Cherokee lands. He feared that enforcement would lead to open warfare between federal troops and the Georgia militia, which would compound the ongoing crisis in South Carolina and lead to a broader civil war. Instead, he vigorously negotiated a land exchange treaty with the Cherokee.
Only a fraction of the Cherokees left voluntarily. In November, the Cherokee were broken into groups of around 1, each and began the journey west. They endured heavy rains, snow, and freezing temperatures. Many Cherokee felt betrayed that their leadership accepted the deal, and over 16, Cherokee signed a petition to prevent the passage of the treaty.
By the end of the decade in , tens of thousands of Cherokee and other tribes had been removed from their land east of the Mississippi River. One Choctaw leader portrayed the removal as "A Trail of Tears and Deaths", a devastating event that removed most of the Native population of the southeastern United States from their traditional homelands. The latter forced relocations have sometimes been referred to as " death marches ", in particular with reference to the Cherokee march across the Midwest in , which occurred on a predominantly land route.
Indians who had the means initially provided for their own removal. Contingents that were led by conductors from the U. Army included those led by Edward Deas, who was claimed to be a sympathizer for the Cherokee plight. This was at the point when the remaining Cherokee were rounded into camps and pressed into oversized detachments, often over in size larger than the populations of Little Rock or Memphis at that time.
Communicable diseases spread quickly through these closely quartered groups, killing many. These contingents were among the last to move, but following the same routes the others had taken; the areas they were going through had been depleted of supplies due to the vast numbers that had gone before them.
The marchers were subject to extortion and violence along the route. In addition, these final contingents were forced to set out during the hottest and coldest months of the year, killing many. Exposure to the elements, disease and starvation, harassment by local frontiersmen, and insufficient rations similarly killed up to one-third of the Choctaw and other nations on the march.
There exists some debate among historians and the affected tribes as to whether the term "Trail of Tears" should be used to refer to the entire history of forced relocations from the United States east of the Mississippi into Indian Territory as was the stated U. The territorial boundaries claimed as sovereign and controlled by the Indian nations living in what were then known as the Indian Territories—the portion of the early United States west of the Mississippi River not yet claimed or allotted to become Oklahoma —were fixed and determined by national treaties with the United States federal government.
These recognized the tribal governments as dependent but internally sovereign , or autonomous nations under the sole jurisdiction of the federal government.
While retaining their tribal governance, which included a constitution or official council in tribes such as the Iroquois and Cherokee, many portions of the southeastern Indian nations had become partially or completely economically integrated into the economy of the region. This included the plantation economy in states such as Georgia , and the possession of slaves.
These slaves were also forcibly relocated during the process of removal. Under the history of U. The establishment of the Indian Territory and the extinguishment of Indian land claims east of the Mississippi anticipated the establishment of the U.
It was imposed on remaining Indian lands later in the 19th century. Georgia , that e. However, in Worcester v. Georgia , the court re-established limited internal sovereignty under the sole jurisdiction of the federal government, in a ruling that both opposed the subsequent forced relocation and set the basis for modern U.
While the latter ruling was defied by Jackson,  the actions of the Jackson administration were not isolated because state and federal officials had violated treaties without consequence, often attributed to military exigency , as the members of individual Indian nations were not automatically United States citizens and were rarely given standing in any U. Jackson's involvement in what became known as the Trail of Tears cannot be ignored.
In a speech regarding Indian removal, Jackson said, "It will separate the Indians from immediate contact with settlements of whites; free them from the power of the States; enable them to pursue happiness in their own way and under their own rude institutions; will retard the progress of decay, which is lessening their numbers, and perhaps cause them gradually, under the protection of the Government and through the influence of good counsels, to cast off their savage habits and become an interesting, civilized, and Christian community.
His point of view garnered support from many Americans, many of whom would benefit economically from the removal. This was compounded by the fact that while citizenship tests existed for Indians living in newly annexed areas before and after forced relocation, individual U. As a result, individual Indians who could prove U. The Choctaw nation occupied large portions of what are now the U. The removals were only agreed to after a provision in the Treaty of Dancing Rabbit Creek allowed some Choctaw to remain.
The chief of the Choctaw tribe, George W. Harkins , wrote to the citizens of the United States before the removals were to commence:.
It is with considerable diffidence that I attempt to address the American people, knowing and feeling sensibly my incompetency; and believing that your highly and well improved minds would not be well entertained by the address of a Choctaw. But having determined to emigrate west of the Mississippi river this fall, I have thought proper in bidding you farewell to make a few remarks expressive of my views, and the feelings that actuate me on the subject of our removal We as Choctaws rather chose to suffer and be free, than live under the degrading influence of laws, which our voice could not be heard in their formation.
Gaines decided to remove Choctaws in three phases starting in and ending in The first was to begin on November 1, with groups meeting at Memphis and Vicksburg. A harsh winter would batter the emigrants with flash floods, sleet, and snow. Initially the Choctaws were to be transported by wagon but floods halted them. With food running out, the residents of Vicksburg and Memphis were concerned.
Five steamboats the Walter Scott, the Brandywine, the Reindeer, the Talma, and the Cleopatra would ferry Choctaws to their river-based destinations. There the temperature stayed below freezing for almost a week with the rivers clogged with ice, so there could be no travel for weeks.
Food rationing consisted of a handful of boiled corn, one turnip, and two cups of heated water per day. Forty government wagons were sent to Arkansas Post to transport them to Little Rock. When they reached Little Rock, a Choctaw chief referred to their trek as a " trail of tears and death ".
Alexis de Tocqueville , the French philosopher, witnessed the Choctaw removals while in Memphis, Tennessee in In the whole scene there was an air of ruin and destruction, something which betrayed a final and irrevocable adieu; one couldn't watch without feeling one's heart wrung.
The Indians were tranquil, but sombre and taciturn. There was one who could speak English and of whom I asked why the Chactas were leaving their country. Nearly 17, Choctaws made the move to what would be called Indian Territory and then later Oklahoma.
Approximately 5,—6, Choctaws remained in Mississippi in after the initial removal efforts. The Choctaws "have had our habitations torn down and burned, our fences destroyed, cattle turned into our fields and we ourselves have been scourged, manacled, fettered and otherwise personally abused, until by such treatment some of our best men have died". The Choctaws were the first to sign a removal treaty presented by the federal government. President Andrew Jackson wanted strong negotiations with the Choctaws in Mississippi, and the Choctaws seemed much more cooperative than Andrew Jackson had imagined.
When commissioners and Choctaws came to negotiation agreements it was said the United States would bear the expense of moving their homes and that they had to be removed within two and a half years of the signed treaty. The treaty negotiated called for the Seminoles to move west, if the land were found to be suitable. They were to be settled on the Creek reservation and become part of the Creek tribe, who considered them deserters; some of the Seminoles had been derived from Creek bands but also from other tribes.
Those among the tribe who once were members of Creek bands did not wish to move west to where they were certain that they would meet death for leaving the main band of Creek Indians. The delegation of seven chiefs who were to inspect the new reservation did not leave Florida until October After touring the area for several months and conferring with the Creeks who had already settled there, the seven chiefs signed a statement on March 28, that the new land was acceptable.
Upon their return to Florida, however, most of the chiefs renounced the statement, claiming that they had not signed it, or that they had been forced to sign it, and in any case, that they did not have the power to decide for all the tribes and bands that resided on the reservation. The villages in the area of the Apalachicola River were more easily persuaded, however, and went west in This came to be known as the Dade Massacre.
As the realization that the Seminoles would resist relocation sank in, Florida began preparing for war. Augustine Militia asked the War Department for the loan of muskets. Five hundred volunteers were mobilized under Brig. Indian war parties raided farms and settlements, and families fled to forts, large towns, or out of the territory altogether. A war party led by Osceola captured a Florida militia supply train, killing eight of its guards and wounding six others.
Most of the goods taken were recovered by the militia in another fight a few days later. Sugar plantations along the Atlantic coast south of St. Augustine were destroyed, with many of the slaves on the plantations joining the Seminoles. The war ended, after a full decade of fighting, in Many Indians were forcibly exiled to Creek lands west of the Mississippi; others retreated into the Everglades.
In the end, the government gave up trying to subjugate the Seminole in their Everglades redoubts and left fewer than Seminoles in peace. However, other scholars state that at least several hundred Seminoles remained in the Everglades after the Seminole Wars. As a result of the Seminole Wars, the surviving Seminole band of the Everglades claims to be the only federally recognized tribe which never relinquished sovereignty or signed a peace treaty with the United States.
Hailed as a creative space that features a shop and a hair salon, the Social Club is a quirky venue for some pampering and retail therapy. The salon part of the space has everything you need if you are looking for a makeover, and the shop features vintage and unusual pieces, many of which reflect the handicrafts of the local community of Norman. The Social Club also feature events such as music nights, art shows, and coffee mornings, and you are welcome to participate in the monthly 2nd Friday Circuit of Art events that showcase local artwork.
The company began in the s and is now hailed as an outlet for artists as well as a source of culture and high quality musical performance for audiences in the region. It has seasonal shows, performances for the local community, and music and dance festivals. There are also special events such as musical storytelling evenings and twinned performances with the Santa Fe Depot in Norman.
Cimarron Circuit Opera Company. Built in the early part of the twentieth century and the former home of Dr. Jacobson, the house now stands on part of the campus of the University of Oklahoma. Visitors can tour the house and take in the native artwork of the Kiowa Six, a group of local Native American artists who frequented the Jacobson House. As such, the house now showcases traditional Swedish architectural features as well as an eclectic mix of Native American artworks.
The gallery is packed with works from up-and-coming local artists and mixes all forms of artwork, from installations to performance art.
There are also regularly held musical events that feature anything from classical pieces to album release parties of bands from the region. Norman Ballet Company regularly produces classical ballets such as Cinderella and Coppelia, and The Oklahoma Nutcracker is performed every year during the holiday period to rave reviews, making it an annual event not to miss should you be in the area. There are also dance workshops available, and Norman Ballet Company regularly puts on dance events within the local community to support other organizations and business in Norman.
Places to go, romantic vacations, cheap weekend getaways near me: The Norman Philharmonic also aims to entertain visitors and locals alike with a diverse program of musical events that change throughout the year. The Norman Philharmonic also regularly supports the art scene by commissioning pieces from new and established musicians, and there is something for all audiences to enjoy.
Not just limited to orchestral works, Norman Philharmonic aims to provide a whole range of musical genres, including jazz and contemporary performances.
They also run dedicated musical festivals with other musical outlets in Oklahoma. The Depot holds regular musical performances that span all genres of music and presents poetry readings on the second Sunday of every month. There are also art and creative writing classes available for those who want to dive into the arts themselves, with lectures, seminars, and demonstrations by local artists.
If you prefer to just watch, then there are rotating exhibitions that feature everything from contemporary art installations to classical paintings. For visitors on a budget, many of the events held at The Depot are available free of charge. Courtesy of Brad - Fotolia. Courtesy of sohananasrin - Fotolia. Sooner Theatre Riverwind Casino , Photo: Norman Philharmonic The Depot , Photo: The Depot Cover Photo: Courtesy of mbuban - Fotolia.
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