The Trail of Tears began when the United States passed the Indian Removal Act of 1830. This act removed many of the Native Americans from their land and relocated tham west of the Mississippi River. The Indians affected by this act where the Cherokee, Choctaw, Chickasaw, Muscogee, Creek and the Seminole. The Cherokee was the last imposed removal to the East of the Mississippi, and was a result of the Georgia Gold Rush. In 1838, President Martin Van Buren used his army to force the Cherokee people off of their home land resulting in almost 4,000 deaths. The Cherokee people refer to this event as “the place where they cried”. During the Georgia Gold Rush many people began trespassing on the Cherokee land in hopes of finding gold. When the people began searching for gold on Cherokee land the government was pressed to fulfill the Compact of 1802. President Jackson did not want to use his power to protect the Cherokee people, since he was already caught up in state rights issues. President Jackson used the disagreement in Georgia to coerce the Cherokee people into signing a removal treaty. The treaty was then carried out by President Martin Van Buren who allowed armed forces to gather nearly 13,000 Cherokees into Concentration camps before being moved away to the west. The Cherokees began their thousand mile journey in the winter of 1838. Many of the Cherokees were on foot with no shoes and little clothing. Because of disease the Cherokee people often had to walk far out of their way to avoid villages in which they were not allowed.