Travel should educate and can have a cathartic effect. It shows how far we have come and how far we still have to go. Everywhere people live there is little known history close by. What has happened close to where you live?
I visit this park a couple times of week to walk our dogs, to clear my mind, and think about different things. This park is located less than 6 miles from my house and I still find it hard to believe that this even happened. But it did happen and we must remember.
Port Royal is a State Heritage Park dedicated to the remembrance of the Trail of Tears. The relocation of Southeastern Indian tribes is a little known American tragedy. This ethnic cleansing named the Indian Removal act of 1830 relocated 46,000 Native Americans from the Southeastern United States to the Territory of Oklahoma. Although the estimates differ it is likely that one third or 18,000 died while making the journey.
The Trail of Tears is the land route that was primarily used for the forced removal of Cherokee Indian Nation in 1838. This trail ran from Northern Georgia to Fort Gibson Oklahoma approximately 2200 miles. 17 forced traveling detachments were formed, several station's were used to rest and resupply the detachments. Port Royal is one of these stations.
Of the 16,550 Cherokees that were forced to march to Oklahoma as many as 6500 died during the move. Someone once said those who fail to remember history are doomed to repeat it. In our American history, we have done some pretty atrocious things that seemed perfectly normal at the time. The 1836 Indian Removal Act was one of them. It’s good that we should learn from this history, but often we don’t.