“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Near Anna in Union County, Illinois — The American Midwest (Great Lakes)

They Passed This Way

I-57 And The Trail Of Tears

— Trail of Tears National Historic Trail —

They Passed This Way Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Craig Doda, April 6, 2019
1. They Passed This Way Marker
Home to thousands of men, women, and children, the Cherokee Nation once spread across parts of Georgia, North Carolina, Tennessee, and Alabama. The 1830 Indian Removal Act required that the Cherokee surrender their land and move west.

In 1838, more than 15,000 Cherokee began their trek west from their eastern homeland to Indian Territory (present-day Oklahoma) over the Tail of Tears.” They traveled by roads and rivers, passing through southern Illinois. NearlyV1 000 died during the journey westward, and up to 4,000 died as a result of the forced removal process.

Intersecting Their Route
You are crossing an original route of the Trail of Tears while traveling 57 between this rest area and exit 30.

The Cherokee camped within one-half mile of where you are standing it is likely they walked this area as they hunted in search of food to survive.

Learn more about the Trail of Tears in Illinois, including sites to visit and segments to drive. An exhibit and brochures are available inside this rest area facility.

Federal Indian Removal Policy
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Indian removal policy aroused fierce and bitter debate. Supporters of the policy claimed it was a benevolent action to save the tribes cast of the Mississippi River from being overwhelmed and lost in the onslaught of an expanding American population. Opponents decried its inhumanity and the tragic consequences it had for the Indian peoples. One thing was certain: removal freed millions of acres of desired Indian lands for use by white settlers.

The Indian Removal Act of 1830 resulted in the removal of thousands of American Indians from their ancestral lands for new homes in Indian Territory (present-day Oklahoma). They traveled by existing roads and rivers. Many groups left in the fall, hoping to avoid the disease and heat of summer travel, and instead faced treacherous winter weather. Many died during the ordeal of the Trail of Tears.

Despite the hardships of the journey, members of the five removed tribes established new lives in the West. They stand as successful sovereign nations, proudly preserving cultural traditions, while adapting to the challenges of the 21st century.

Cherokee who survived the Trail of Tears created a new sovereign nation in present-day Oklahoma Some Cherokee remained in North Carolina and, due to a special exemption, formed the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians.
Erected by
They Passed This Way Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Craig Doda, April 6, 2019
2. They Passed This Way Marker
National Park Service, U.S. Department of the Interior; Trial of Tears Association.
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Native AmericansRoads & Vehicles. In addition, it is included in the Trail of Tears series list. A significant historical year for this entry is 1830.
Location. 37° 28.183′ N, 89° 7.967′ W. Marker is near Anna, Illinois, in Union County. Marker can be reached from Interstate 57, 2 miles north of Route 146, on the right when traveling south. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Anna IL 62906, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 7 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. King Neptune (approx. ¼ mile away); a different marker also named King Neptune (approx. 1.7 miles away); World War II Memorial (approx. 6.1 miles away); Operation Iraqi Freedom (approx. 6.1 miles away); Illinois Medal of Honor Recipents (approx. 6.1 miles away); Veterans Memorial (approx. 6.2 miles away); Illinois Central (approx. 6.3 miles away); a different marker also named Veterans Memorial (approx. 6.3 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Anna.
Additional keywords. genocide, forced removal, forced relocation
Credits. This page was last revised on December 2, 2020. It was originally submitted on December 2, 2020, by Craig Doda of Napoleon, Ohio. This page has been viewed 247 times since then and 74 times this year. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on December 2, 2020, by Craig Doda of Napoleon, Ohio. • Devry Becker Jones was the editor who published this page.

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Jun. 21, 2024