Tuesday, July 21, 2009
Eight young Cherokee cyclists will retrace the route of the Trail of Tears, with a revival of the Remember the Removal ride. Riders were selected by an advisory panel that interviewed and determined each candidate’s interest and commitment to this project. Twenty-five years ago, a similar group of students undertook the same challenge during the first Remember the Removal ride.
The more than 900-mile bike ride will take 23 days, with each day traveling from 40 to 70 miles per day. The riders will stop daily to learn about things that happened along the Trail of Tears.
The Trail of Tears of the Cherokees took place over the winter months of 1838 through 1839. An estimated 16,000 Cherokees were forced by the U.S. to remove themselves and their families from their homes, farms and communities. After being held in federal stockades until deep winter, they were subsequently herded on overland and water routes that moved through territories that represent the present-day states of Tennessee, Kentucky, Illinois, Missouri and Arkansas. More than four thousand Cherokees died along the various routes from the harsh conditions of the crossing. Click on the blue title above to link to complete online article.