From left, Cherokee Nation Chief Bill John Baker; Pauline Moore (representative for Daughters of the American Revolution (Chapters in Cherokee District in Tennessee) and Zach Wamp, former Tennessee Congressional representative.
The Cherokee Removal Park and Museum in Meigs County was the location Sunday of the 175th Anniversary Commemoration of the Trail of Tears, that began in 1838. Cherokees crossed the Tennessee River channel, located behind the Cherokee Removal Park.
A granite memorial consisting of several panels with thousands of Cherokee names was dedicated during a ribbon-cutting ceremony.
Among the dignitaries attending were principal Cherokee Nation Chief Bill John Baker (Oklahoma); National President of the Trail of Tears Association, Jack T. Baker (Oklahoma); former Tennessee Congressional Rep. Zach Wamp (Cherokee lineage; brought about legislation for land in Tennessee to commemorate the Cherokees’ history); Tommy Wildcat of the Cherokee Nation, speaker and flutist (Oklahoma); Alva Crowe; Greg Vital; David Gooch; and the team of Shirley Haskins, Gloria Schouggins and Shirley Lawrence - who were honored for working many years toward the development of Cherokee Removal Park and Museum.
Future plans for the Park and Museum call for a walking trail and other historical remembrances.