After the Trail of Tears: The Cherokees Struggle for Sovereignty, 1839-1880 by William G. McLoughlin (review)

After the Trail of Tears: The Cherokees Struggle for Sovereignty, 1839-1880 by William G. McLoughlin (University of North Carolina Press, 1994)

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After the Trail of Tears: The Cherokees Struggle for Sovereignty, 1839-1880 by William G. McLoughlin (review)

by Rowena McClinton Ruff
Southern Cultures, Vol. 1, No. 4: Southern Humor

University of North Carolina Press, 1994

A prolific and gifted writer, the late William G. McLoughlin, who died in 1992, left an invaluable contribution to our understanding of Cherokee culture. His earlier works, include Cherokees and Missionaries, 1789-1839 (1984) and Cherokee Renascence in the New Republic (1986). After the Trail of Tears, published posthumously, is a sequel and a companion to Champions of the Cherokees: Evan and John B. Jones (1990). This book carries the Cherokee story beyond the 1839 forced removal and ends just before the 1898 Curtis Act dissolved the Cherokees’ sovereign rights as a nation. McLoughlin focuses on the Cherokees’ struggle to rebuild their nation twice between the years 1839 and 1880, while they contended with white expansionism and pervasive racism.