Trail of Tears: Rise and Fall of the Cherokee Nation by John Ehle

1049 Words Sep 25th, 2012 5 Pages
US History to 1877
Trail of Tears: Rise and Fall of the Cherokee Nation by John Ehle

Having little knowledge of the Cherokee removal and the history that took place in this moment in America’s past, the book Trail of Tears: Rise and Fall of the Cherokee Nation by John Ehle, offers an insight to the politics, social dynamics and class struggles the Cherokee Nation faced in the late 1830s. The book was very comprehensive and the scope of the book covers nearly 100 years of Native American History. Ehle captures the history of the Native American people by showing the readers what led to the events infamously known as the Trail of Tears. The author uses real military orders, journals, and letters which aid in creating a book that keeps
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John Ridge, his father Major Ridge, and his cousin Elias Boudinot were part of the treaty process that would relocate the Cherokee Nation called, “The Treaty of New Equota”. It is evident in the book that John Ridge was in favor of signing the treaty because he thought that he would be protecting the rights of the Cherokee people. It becomes clear that the Cherokees are going to be moving, it was just how they will be moved that made all the difference. The book talks about the Americans thirst for land and how the gold rush in Georgia would eventually force the Cherokees out.
The story begins with background of John Ridge and how he came to be a factor in the Cherokee nation. The upbringing of Ridge was an important aspect and where he went to school also played a role. Ridge’s life was assimilated to the white American culture; he even married a white woman from New England. It’s important to know this when you try to understand why he would sign the treaty. The book focuses on major events happening at the time and how it will affect the Cherokees and then switches to what will John Ridge do with his own home, like accepting many white ways, but not accepting Christianity. It also mentions the actions of other nations like the Creek and Choctaw, and how they reacted to the whites. During the reading, you begin to see that the Cherokees
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