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My Kentucky Roads: Trail of Tears Commemorative Park

TRAIL TEARS 300HOPKINSVILLE, Ky. (8/24/13) – Back in December of 1987, President Ronald Regan signed a bill that created the Trail of Tears as a National Historical Trail.

The Trail of Tears was a forced relocation of Native American nations from the southeastern parts of the United States that was known as an act of genocide.

The phrase was originated from a description of the removal of the Choctaw Nation in 1831. The removal of Native American nations included the Cherokee, Muscogee (Creek), Choctaw, Seminole and other nations from the United States.

During their route, many Native American suffered from diseases and starvation. Many died, including 4,000 of the 15,000 relocated Cherokees.

In April of 1996, the National Park Service designated the park as a certified site on the National Historic Trail of Tears. The park is the first non-federal property to receiving such designations.

One of the main focal points of the park is the log cabin that dates back to the Trail of Tears itself, which now serves as the Heritage Center of the park.

For the last 26 years, the park has held their annual Trail of Tears Pow Wow to give visitors and community members an educational experience and an opportunity to celebrate through dance, singing, drumming, food and arts of the original inhabitants and caretakers of this land.

This year’s Trail of Tears Pow Wow will be on September 7 &8, the weekend after Labor Day.

Amber Averitt
SurfKY News

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