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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”

Near Birchwood in Meigs County, Tennessee — The American South (East South Central)
 

"To Learn and not Forget"

 
 
"To Learn and not Forget" Marker image. Click for full size.
By Lee Hattabaugh, January 2, 2011
1. "To Learn and not Forget" Marker
Inscription.  
"The Trail of Tears was a tragedy for a progressive and independent people whose population was markedly decreased as a result of the hardships associated with lengthy confinements and a lengthy arduous journey. The forced Removal left an indelible impression on the Cherokee psyche and is today still regarded as the most significant event in Cherokee history.

The politics of Removal continue to be debated and the advisability challenged. More than a century and a half after the event we are still struggling to understand why it happened, how it affected the people involved and how it changed the future of American politics, thought, and justice. The Removal has given rise to myths, legends, and public perceptions, which continue to weigh heavily on the American conscience."


Duane H. King, Ph.D.
Vice President of Museum Affairs and Executive Director
Gilcrease The Museum of the Americas 2008

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"How do we ever prevent the greed and lust for power from causing another Trail of Tears? How do we encourage the generations of people who are not familiar with the story of the Trail of Tears to learn
"To Learn and not Forget" Marker image. Click for full size.
By Lee Hattabaugh, January 2, 2011
2. "To Learn and not Forget" Marker
and not forget? This homeland was wrongfully taken from us by a political mob mentality that belied logic, law, and humanity."

"The Trail of Tears is not an episode of defeat. We are a people who have faced adversity, survived, adapted, and who now prosper and excel. We are not victims unless we choose to be. Our ancestors paid dearly on the Trail of Tears. This legacy should inspire us to achieve the highest levels of excellence and prosperity and lead us to be healthy and happy."

Principal Chief Chadwick Smith, Cherokee Nation, 2008
 
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Government & PoliticsNative AmericansWars, US Indian. In addition, it is included in the Trail of Tears series list.
 
Location. 35° 24.423′ N, 85° 0.383′ W. Marker is near Birchwood, Tennessee, in Meigs County. Marker can be reached from Blythe Ferry Road 2 miles north of Hiwassee Highway (Tennessee Highway 60), on the right when traveling north. Marker is part of the Cherokee Removal Memorial Park. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Birchwood TN 37308, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. General Winfield Scott (here, next to this marker); "Orders No. 25" (here, next to this marker); a different marker also named "To Learn and not Forget"
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(here, next to this marker); "Your Fate is Decided" (here, next to this marker); "Chains of Friendship" (here, next to this marker); "Given by the Great Spirit above" (here, next to this marker); "A Desire to Possess" (here, next to this marker); "Not a treaty at all" (here, next to this marker). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Birchwood.
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. It was originally submitted on January 7, 2011, by Lee Hattabaugh of Capshaw, Alabama. This page has been viewed 391 times since then and 13 times this year. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on January 7, 2011, by Lee Hattabaugh of Capshaw, Alabama. • Bill Pfingsten was the editor who published this page.
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Jul. 15, 2020