An interesting juxtaposition in the above video of two of the salient events in the administration of Jackson: the Indian Removal Act and the The Trail of Tears.
Being part Cherokee and all Republican I have never been too fond of the author of the Trail of Tears, the forced removal of the Cherokees to west of the Mississippi, and the founder of the Democratic Party, as I think I conveyed in this earlier post about Old Hickory.
However, viewing this video caused me to think about how his actions looked in his eyes. Jackson was a veteran of the American Revolution. His entire life was spent during a period in which the nation was created and was in a process of expansion across the Continent, which was incomplete at his death. I suspect that Jackson viewed himself as carrying through with the work begun by the Founding Fathers. The United States of America, in Jackson’s view of Manifest Destiny, was going to be a great country, spanning the continent. No group, the British, the Indians, the Spanish in Florida, secessionists in South Carolina, was going to stand in the way of Jackson bringing this great work to pass. In this way his actions certainly seem logical, if not always moral.
However, even viewing things from his perspective does not make me any more forgiving towards him in regard to The Trail of Tears.