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The Trail of Tears

The Trail of Tears was a journey of fear endured by the Indians of the Eastern Cherokee Nation.  The exodus ripped through southeastern America during the prime of winter in 1838-1839.  Thousands of lives were lost all for the insignificant benefits that would be granted to the United States government with the displacement of the Indians.  The Cherokee people were forced to leave their homeland under unfavorable circumstances to take part in one of the worst horrors in history experienced by a group of human beings, resulting in a rough transition in geography and eventual demolition to the tribal nation.
In the early 1800s, the Cherokees began altering their culture by adopting many American behaviors.  Their traditional religion, language, education, clothing, farming, and even inter-tribal media began to blend and harmonize with American culture.  The transition in lifestyle was most directly triggered by the newly developed Cherokee Alphabet, which came in 1819.  The Alphabet, brought about by Sequoyah, inspired a rapid increase in Cherokee literacy (Thomas 308).  They became known as one of the Five Civilized TribesSeminole, Choctaw, Chickasaw, Creek, and Cherokeeas a result of the United States government civilization program (Goodwin).  The Cherokee even modified their government to model that of the United States.  The Cherokees were increasingly aware

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of the tension their American neighbors felt towards their distinct lifestyle.  By assimilating with American culture, the Cherokee people hoped to maintain peaceful relations.
Congress passed the Indian Removal Act in 1830, which called for all Indians living east of the Mississippi River to be moved to present-day Oklahoma in Indian Territory (Goodwin).  Though the Choctaws and Chickasaws acquiesced, the Cherokees rightfully protested.  In 1831, they appealed to the Supreme Court against the state of Georgia.  They asserted that they had a right to govern themselves as a separate nation.  Chief Justice John Marshall shot this theory down by firmly explaining that the United States Constitution reads that no new state can be formed within the boundaries of an existing state. (Chapman)  However, the following year in the Worcester v. Georgia case, the Court ruled that the Cherokee was a distinct community within its own territorial boundaries that the laws and citizens of Georgia cannot interfere (Peters 515-517).  
The contradictions set the United States up for opposition.  The Cherokees pleaded for the right to remain on the land of their ancestors.  Missionaries and strong religious advocates fought on behalf of the Cherokees, but the outraged American citizens derogatory remarks against the government pushed President Jackson over the edge.  He gave

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a highly influential speech stressing the importance of a speedy removal to the United States, the individual States, and to the Cherokee themselves.  The speech was delivered in his Second Annual Message to Congress.  Here he stated several positive aspects of the removal: it would put an end to all disagreements between General and State Governments on account of Indians; it would place a civilized population in large tracts of uncivilized wilderness; it would strengthen the southwestern frontier; it would allow Mississippi and Alabama to advance in population, wealth, and power; it would separate the Indians from white settlement and power of the States; it would enable the Indians to pursue happiness in their own way; and, it would let the Indians further develop an interesting, civilized, and Christian community (Richardson 519-523).
The American government made up its mind to carry out the Indian Removal Act.  The majority of Cherokees stood firm on holding their ground, but a few of them felt they should give in before being forced to leave under much worse conditions (Niles Weekly Register).  This small group wrote and signed the Treaty of New Echota, ceding all Cherokee territory in the southern Appalachians to the United States in exchange for $5 million and land in Indian Territory.  It was approved in late May of 1836, sparking mass rebellion among the Cherokee and American nations.  

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Finally, two years later, federal troops were ordered to prepare for roundup (Chapman).  
May of 1838 bore the worst drought in recorded American history; May also served as the beginning of the Trail of Tears (Rose City Net).  May 17, 1838, General Winfield Scott, who ... more

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Anne Franks Life

THE ANNE FRANK STORY AND THE HOLOCAUST IN HOLLAND
Anneliesse Marie Frank was born on June 12, 1929, in Frankfurt-am-Main, Germany, the second daughter of Otto and Edith Frank. Anne and her older sister Margot (born February 6, 1926), were born in the post-World War 1 era and they, along with their parents, were German citizens under the laws of the Weimar Republic (1918-33).Otto, Anne's father, was born in 1889, in Frankfurt, Germany-where his family could trace their roots back to the 17th century. Edith Holl"nder Frank, Anne's mother, was born in Aachen in 1900. Against the background of the Wilhelmian Empire, they grew up in an era of fierce European nationalism and rivalry along with extraordinary cultural and technological achievements. In 1914, their lives, like millions of others throughout the world, were dramatically changed when World War I began. Otto Frank and one of his brothers were among the men who enlisted in the German Army to serve the German "fatherland." Adolf Hitler also volunteered, serving in the List infantry of the Bavarian Army as a dispatch runner on the front for more than four years. The effects of World War I would transform the lives of both Otto Frank and Adolf Hitler. It would also transform the world around them.Amidst the turmoil of Weimar Germany, Otto and Edith Frank married in 1925, and Otto pursued an industrial career. In 1929, the year Anne Frank was born, the stock market in New York crashed, and an already unstable Weimar government was further undermined by economic depression, unemployment, and inflation.In 1933 the Nazis came into power. The Franks decided to move to Amsterdam in the Netherlands, which had been neutral during World War I. The Netherlands had the reputation of being a safe haven for religious minorities. Otto Frank left for Amsterdam first. He established a branch of his uncle's company called the "Opekta Works." The company produced pectin, an ingredient used in jam. This is a quote from her diary in 1942 "I lived in Frankfurt until I was four. Because we're Jewish, my father immigrated to Holland in 1933 . . . My mother, Edith Hollander Frank went with him to Holland in September, while Margot and I were sent to Aachen to stay with our grandmother. Margot went to Holland in December, and I followed in February, when I was plunked down on the table as a birthday present for Margot."The Nazis appointed Arthur Seyss-Inquart as Reich Commissioner for the Occupied Dutch Territories. He was an Austrian Nazi who had demonstrated his brutal anti-Semitic feelings in the early Austrian union with Germany. At first Anne and Margot were still able to socialize with their friends and attend school. However, soon the Nazi administration in the Netherlands, along with the Dutch civil service, began issuing and carrying out anti-Jewish decrees. This included stripping Jews of their rights as citizens and human beings and isolating them from their fellow Dutch citizens. Otto Frank, aware of what the Nazi decrees had done to Jews in Germany, anticipated as best he could what was going to happen to by turning his business over to his non-Jewish colleagues. ? Anne had to leave her Montessori School to attend the Jewish Lyceum." Our freedom was severely restricted by a series of anti-Jewish decrees; Jews were required to wear a yellow star; Jews were forbidden to use streetcars; Jews were forbidden to ride in cars, even their own; Jews were required to do their shopping between 3 and 5 p.m. Jews were required to frequent only Jewish owned barbershops and beauty parlors; Jews were forbidden to be out on the streets between 8 pm and 6 am . . . Jews were forbidden to visit Christians in their homes; Jews were required to attend Jewish schools. You couldn't do this and you couldn't do that. But life went on." (June 29, 1942)The first brutal round up (razzia) of 400 Jewish men and boys in Holland occurred on February 25, 1941. It was in response to earlier riots by Dutch Nazis and a counter attack by a small Jewish resistance group. "Virtually the entire working population of Amsterdam and a few other cities in the ... more

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