The White Americans occupied various part of the United States including the western frontier. It is important to note that they viewed the Native Americans as aliens and this generated fear in them. On the other hand, efforts that put in place by earlier Presidents that sought to make Native Americans equal to the White Americans had not succeeded (Cave, 1334). The inflow of more White Settlers into the United States in the 1830s saw most of the land occupied by Native Americans being coveted. The locations included Tennessee, Georgia, Florida, Alabama, and North Carolina (Cave, 1336). In particular, the Whites wanted the relocation of the Native Americans to other territories so as to increase the profits they earned from the growth of cotton. For this reason, a disputed resulted as the White Americans began to steal livestock, loot houses, and burn towns in a move to fasten the process of relocating the Native Americans.
Andrew Jackson’s government took part in the eviction of Native Americans from the south. In particular, there was legislation passed that ensured the Native Americans did not enjoy rights that allowed them to occupy their territory. The Indian removal dispute was a heated matter given that a number of cases were lodged in court to fight for the sovereignty of the Native Americans. The cases included Worcester v. Georgia (1832) and Cherokee Nation v. Georgia (1831) (Cave, 1343). The court passed a ruling that the Native Americans had the sovereignty to occupy their territories. However, the mistreatment faced by the Native Americans continued. It is important to note that President Andrew Jackson in 1832 declared that the efforts to allow the Native Americans to occupy the south had failed as no individual was willing to enforce the court rulings. Therefore, it became evident that he was in support of Indian removal. Besides, while serving as a general in the military, he had advocated for campaigns that were against Seminoles in Florida and Creeks in Alabama and Georgia (Cave, 1342).
Andrew Jackson's stand remained unchanged while serving as president. In particular, he brought into law the Indian Removal Act in 1830 that allowed the government to offer the land in the east of Mississippi so as to gain ownership of that in the west. Therefore, the Native American territory that formed current Oklahoma assisted in finalizing the Louisiana Purchase. Despite the law being clear that the matter needed to be undertaken peacefully, President Andrew Jackson’s administration failed to follow the underlying provisions.
Andrew Jackson was wrong given the manner he handled the relocation of the Native Americans. In particular, he violated the provisions of the congressional constitution. Besides, the Cherokee Nation had received a legal land allocation in Georgia in 1791 following a treaty that the United States government was a party (Cave, 1346). On the other hand, Andrew Jackson had the mandate to ensure that the court rulings were followed but instead, he insisted that the Native Americans should render their land to the White Americans. While the American troops escorted the Cherokee Nation to the new territory allocated to them, they faced a myriad of challenges as there were no food supplies. For this reason, thousands of people lost their lives owing to the negligence of Andrew Jackson’s administration. Hence, the Indian removal was not handled well as it resulted in tears and death.
- Cave, Alfred A. 'Abuse of Power: Andrew Jackson and the Indian Removal Act of 1830'. The Historian 65.6 (2003): 1330-1353.