Cherokees Forced Along Trail of Tears A considerable force of the U.S. Army—more than 7,000 men—was ordered by President Martin Van Buren, who followed Jackson in office, to remove the Cherokees. General Winfield Scott commanded the operation, which became notorious for the cruelty shown to the Cherokee people.
Trail of Tears, in U.S. history, the forced relocation during the 1830s of Eastern Woodlands Indians of the Southeast region of the United States (including Cherokee, Creek, Chickasaw, Choctaw, and Seminole, among other nations) to Indian Territory west of the Mississippi River.
Guided by policies favored by President Andrew Jackson, who led the country from 1828 to 1837, the Trail of Tears (1837 to 1839) was the forced westward migration of American Indian tribes from the South and Southeast. Land grabs threatened tribes throughout the South and Southeast in the early 1800s.
With the first wave in 1831, Choctaws were the first tribe to cover the Trail of Tears, so named because of the suffering and loss of life on the march.
Tribes in Oklahoma Before Removal By the early 1800s, the Osage, Pawnee, Kiowa, Comanche, Cheyenne, and Arapaho had also migrated into the region or visited to use resources. Some Delaware, Shawnee, Kickapoo, Chickasaw, and Choctaw regularly came to hunt Oklahoma’s abundant bison, beaver, deer, and bear.
May 28, 1830: President Andrew Jackson Signs the Indian Removal Act, Leads to Trail of Tears. The act targeted Native American groups living in the southern region of the United States.
Choctaw, North American Indian tribe of Muskogean linguistic stock that traditionally lived in what is now southeastern Mississippi. The Choctaw dialect is very similar to that of the Chickasaw, and there is evidence that they are a branch of the latter tribe.
Numbers tend to vary wildly, but it is thought that, between 1830 and 1834, about 12,500 Choctaw embarked on the Trail of Tears, of whom between 1,500 and 4,000 died along the way.
In October 1860, George Hudson was elected Chief of the Choctaws and served until October 1862. After his attempt and failure to succeed himself as Chief he retired to his home on Mountain Fork River.
The original tribes of the area included the Apache, Arapaho, Caddo, Comanche, Kiowa, Osage and the Wichita tribes.