Indian Country Today featured history professor Dan Feller in this story about the US Treasury’s announcement to replace president Andrew Jackson with ex-slave and abolitionist Harriet Tubman on the twenty-dollar bill. The news was greeted with celebration in Indian country, particularly because of the infamy Jackson earned among Cherokees for his role in the Trail of Tears, the article noted.
Feller attributed Jackson’s fall to a modern awareness of Indian removal, according to the article. The publication quoted Feller’s article in U.S. News & World Report which stated that the leading history of Jackson contained one reference to Indian removal in 523 pages and textbooks of the ’50s and 60s said nothing about it. Times have changed, according to Feller.
“Indian removal is now usually told as a simple morality tale with Jackson as the villain. Its true story is much more messy and complicated. Still, no matter how we judge Jackson’s role, we cannot say that the present fixation on Indian removal distorts history, because Jackson shared that fixation himself. He made Indian removal a leading priority, he pursued it relentlessly, and he took pride in its achievement. If the result was a travesty, Andrew Jackson’s reputation cannot and should not escape it.” Read the story online.