IF YOU GO
What: Trail of Tears symposium
When: Sept. 12 at 6 p.m.
Where: Second floor of Colloms Campus Center on East College Street
More information: Tennessee Trail of Tears president Debbie Moore at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Tennessee Trail of Tears Association and Tennessee Wesleyan University in Athens, Tennessee, will host a free Trail of Tears educational symposium at 6 p.m. on Sept. 12.
The event is open to the public and will be at the Colloms Campus Center on Tennessee Wesleyan's campus in downtown Athens, organizers said.
Guest speakers for the evening will be Joe Guy, the county historian and sheriff, and Cherokee Nation representative Troy Wayne Poteet, Tennessee Trail of Tears Association president Debbie Moore said in a statement.
Guy has published three books on Southeast Tennessee history and for the symposium will discuss the Walker family of McMinn and Bradley counties, according to Moore. Guy will focus on Major John Walker, who fought as a Cherokee officer with Andrew Jackson at the Battle of Horseshoe Bend. The Walkers openly supported the removal of the Cherokee from the East. Guy will discuss the causes and effects of the assassination of Walker's son, Jack Walker, Moore said.
Troy Wayne Poteete, a resident of Webber's Falls, Oklahoma, is the executive director of the Trail of Tears Association and a former chief justice of the Cherokee Supreme Court. Moore said Poteete "will explore the motives behind the Cherokee who signed the 1835 Treaty of New Echota that led to the removal of the Cherokee from their native homelands in the East in 1838."
"These Trail of Tears Symposiums are a great way to tell these stories of the people and events that caused the Trail of Tears," Guy said. "We try to give a lot of background history that people may not know about."
Guy was glad to be teamed with Poteete.
"It is always great to be on the program with Troy Wayne Poteete," Guy said. "His presentations are lively, entertaining, and most of all highly informative."
Contact Ben Benton at email@example.com or 423-757-6569. Follow him on Twitter @BenBenton or at www.facebook.com/benbenton1.