Richard Overfield | Ars Optica #7 (Trail of Tears)
oil on linen | 1997
The text, which is in the Cherokee language, forms part of the border & and is written in gold leaf.
TEXT: Written in Cherokee. It’s the imagined thoughts of a member of the Cherokee nation being relocated west of the Mississippi River. In May 1838, the Cherokee removal process began. U.S. Army troops, along with various state militia, moved into the tribe’s homelands and forcibly evicted more than 16,000 Cherokee Indian people from their homelands in Tennessee, Alabama, North Carolina, and Georgia. They were first sent to so-called “round up camps,” and soon afterward to one of three emigration camps. Once there, the U.S. Army gave orders to move the Cherokee west.