Original 1836 New Yorker Newspaper Containing President Andrew Jackson’s Speech Regarding Indian Removal & Trail of Tears
Complete Original New Yorker Newspaper (16 pages) dated December 10, 1836 | Contains complete printing of the final State of the Union Address by PRESIDENT ANDREW JACKSON | The speech prominently the subject of Indian Removal and the Trail of Tears
Important Antique Original New Yorker Newspaper dated December 10, 1836 | Is a complete 16 page copy of the December 10th Edition of the New Yorker Newspaper | The paper contains the complete printing of the final State of the Union Address by PRESIDENT ANDREW JACKSON | The speech prominently the subject of Indian Removal and the Trail of Tears | The Newspaper is in good condition with foxing and toning consistent with its age and use.
This newspaper contains the complete text of President ANDREW JACKSON’s final STATE OF THE UNION ADDRESS. Jackson discusses the Federal Government’s INDIAN REMOVAL POLICY which caused what is known as the Trail of Tears.
The Trail of Tears was a series of forced relocations of Native American nations in the United States following the Indian Removal Act of 1830. The relocated people suffered from exposure, disease, and starvation while en route, and more than ten thousand died before reaching their various destinations. The removal included members of the Cherokee, Muscogee, Seminole, Chickasaw, and Choctaw nations, from their ancestral homelands in the Southeastern United States to an area west of the Mississippi River that had been designated as Indian Territory. The phrase “Trail of Tears” originated from a description of the removal of the Choctaw Nation in 1831. Between 1830 and 1850, the Chickasaw, Choctaw, Muscogee, Creek, Seminole and Cherokee people (including European Americans and African American freedmen and slaves who lived among them) were forcibly removed from their traditional lands in the Southeastern United States, and relocated further west. The Native Americans were forced to march to their designated destinations by state and local militias, in some cases at the express objection of the federal government and the U.S. Supreme Court.
The removal, conducted under President Andrew Jackson, followed the Indian Removal Act of 1830. The act provided the president with powers to exchange land with Native tribes and provide infrastructural improvements on the existing lands. 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, provide the president with power to force tribes West against the will of the tribe and without treaty.
In the few years following the Act, the Cherokee brought forth lawsuits. Some of these cases reached the Supreme Court, the most influential being Worcester v. Georgia. Samuel Worcester and other non-Native Americans were convicted by Georgia law for residing in Indian 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. The Court ruled in Worcester’s favor, declaring the Cherokee Nation was its own establishment and was therefore required to adhere only to Cherokee law, not Georgia law. Ultimately, Indian land was free from the law of individual states. 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, however, adhere to the Supreme Court mandate, pointing out that because the Court had no means of enforcing their mandate, the President had power to do as he chooses. Even congressmen Henry Clay and John Quincy Adams, who supported Georgia’s initiative to place state laws on Indian Territory, were outraged by Jackson’s apparent disobedience and self-believed superiority over the federal government. Ralph Waldo Emerson wrote an account of Cherokee assimilation into the American culture, declaring his support of the Worcester decision.
Jackson chose to continue with Indian removal, granting Georgia power to force Native Americans off Indian land. The Treaty of Echota was signed on May 23, 1836, which granted American Indians two years to move off their land before forced removal. Few Indians left. Keeping with their promises, the U.S. government began moving American Indians west in May 1838.
The text of Jackson’s 1836 State of the Union follows:
Fellow Citizens of the Senate and House of Representatives:
Addressing to you the last annual message I shall ever present to the Congress of the United States, it is a source of the most heartfelt satisfaction to be able to congratulate you on the high state of prosperity which our beloved country has attained. With no causes at home or abroad to lessen the confidence with which we look to the future for continuing proofs of the capacity of our free institutions to produce all the fruits of good government, the general condition of out affairs may well excite our national pride…
…Happily for the interests of humanity, the hostilities with the Creeks were brought to a close soon after your adjournment, without that effusion of blood which at one time was apprehended as inevitable. The unconditional submission of the hostile party was followed by their speedy removal to the country assigned them West of the Mississippi. The inquiry as to alleged frauds in the purchase of the reservations of these Indians and the causes of their hostilities, requested by the resolution of the House of Representatives of the first of July last [1836-07-01] to be made by the President, is now going on through the agency of commissioners appointed for that purpose. Their report may be expected during your present session.
The difficulties apprehended in the Cherokee country have been prevented, and the peace and safety of that region and its vicinity effectually secured, by the timely measures taken by the War Department, and still continued…
…Having now finished the observations deemed proper on this the last occasion I shall have of communicating with the two Houses of Congress at their meeting, I can not omit an expression of the gratitude which is due to the great body of my fellow citizens, in whose partiality and indulgence I have found encouragement and support in the many difficult and trying scenes through which it has been my lot to pass during my public career. Though deeply sensible that my exertions have not been crowned with a success corresponding to the degree of favor bestowed upon me, I am sure that they will be considered as having been directed by an earnest desire to promote the good of my country, and I am consoled by the persuasion that what ever errors have been committed will find a corrective in the intelligence and patriotism of those who will succeed us. All that has occurred during my Administration is calculated to inspire me with increased confidence in the stability of our institutions; and should I be spared to enter upon that retirement which is so suitable to my age and infirm health and so much desired by me in other respects, I shall not cease to invoke that beneficent Being to whose providence we are already so signally indebted for the continuance of His blessings on our beloved country.
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