Indian Removal Act Flashcards, test questions and answers
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What is Indian Removal Act?
The Indian Removal Act of 1830 was a law passed by the U.S. Congress that authorized the President to negotiate with Native American tribes in the Southeastern United States for their removal to federal territory west of the Mississippi River in exchange for their homelands. This act resulted in the relocation of thousands of Native Americans and their displacement from ancestral lands, resulting in immense suffering and death due to disease, starvation, and exposure.The Indian Removal Act was an extension of policies implemented by President Thomas Jefferson’s administration, which sought to expand US settlement into territories previously held by Native Americans since time immemorial. The policy was intended to reduce conflict between settlers and Indigenous peoples on frontier lands east of the Mississippi River, as well as open up new land for white settlement. To accomplish these goals, President Andrew Jackson signed into law an act allowing him to negotiate treaties with Indigenous nations east of the Mississippi River with a view toward extinguishing their title thereto through exchanging their homelands for new territories located further west. The tragic consequences experienced by Native Americans under this policy are difficult to overstate; tens of thousands died due to inadequate resources or exposure during forced marches known as Trail of Tears from southeastern states like Georgia and Tennessee toward Oklahoma Territory. Moreover, some tribes were completely eliminated from existence as a result of these policies; others experienced severe population decline due to disease or malnutrition caused by long-distance relocation or being denied access resources necessary for survival such as hunting grounds or fishing waters. In spite of its devastating effects on Indigenous populations throughout North America, historians have noted that it is difficult not to recognize that this legislation represented one more step in what has been described as a larger effort at Anglo-American expansionism during this periodone which sought not only physical but also ideological control over indigenous populations deemed incompatible with white settlers’ ideals regarding progress and development within US territories during this period.