Britt Clairborne, United Cherokee Nation Chief of Police, and his sweet wife, Cherokee Rose, face challenging times. It’s 1889, and the Cherokees are being moved onto reservations within the Oklahoma District. The remainder of the land promised to them decades ago is being opened for white settlers to homestead. Of course, the Cherokees are unhappy. Some are outraged and want to stand and fight–despite Britt’s warning that they will be punished swiftly and severely by the U.S. Army.
Before long, white settlers converge from all directions. Lee and Kathy Belden and their two children come from Texas, where they lost their farm after years of drought. Martha Ackerman, newly widowed, arrives from Kansas with her three young children and her parents. Craig Parker, fresh out of prison and cleared of a bank robbery he didn’t commit, travels with his loyal wife, Gloria, from Missouri. And so many others. They all come for land and a new beginning, yet face so much that is unexpected: fraudulent sooners, funnel clouds, rattlesnakes, even oil. And of course, unexpected kindness and God’s provision.
Will the Cherokees and the settlers all find a home in the land of promise? And perhaps a spiritual home as well?
1839. The North Carolina Cherokees are settling into their new home in Indian Territory and Britt Claiborne and Cherokee Rose are settling into married life. Britt, a quarter Cherokee Indian, is released from the United States army and joins the Cherokee Police Force where his position takes him into fearsome and heart-gripping dangers. They raise two children with much love and delight. They also lean on God through the trials of their day—including the death of the popular Cherokee Chief Sequoyah, who had translated the Bible into their language. Follow the historical events that punctuate their lives until 1889, when President Harrison announces that whites are free to enter Indian Territory , now known by the Indians as home.
Story Behind the Book
Long captivated with the study of American history, Al and JoAnna Lacy eagerly researched the time in the 1800s when five American Indian tribes were forced by the U.S. government to make a one-thousand-mile journey to Indian Territory (now the state of Oklahoma). The tribes were the Cherokee, the Chickasaw, the Choctaw, the Creek, and the Seminole. Repeatedly forced to surrender their lands, the people of the Cherokee Nation, as well as those of the other four tribes, were hoping to find in Indian Territory a place to call home.
It’s late summer 1838. President Martin Van Buren issues an order that the fifteen thousand Cherokee Indians living in the Smoky Mountains of North Carolina are to be evicted from their homeland. Forced to migrate to Indian Territory, the Cherokees begin their tragic, one-thousand-mile journey westward. Most of the seven thousand soldiers escorting them along the way are brutally cruel. But Cherokee Rose, an eighteen-year-old Indian girl, finds one soldier, Lieutenant Britt Claiborne, willing to stand up for them. Both Christians, Cherokee Rose discovers that Britt is also a quarter Cherokee himself. It’s upon the Trail of Tears that they fall in love, dreaming of one day marrying and finding a place to call home together.
They found each other in the midst of tragedy…
But is their love enough to keep them together?
Cherokee Rose has endured more than any eighteen-year-old girl should. Though accepted by her tribe, being both mixed blood and a Christian set her apart. Then fifteen thousand Cherokee Indians are evicted from their homes in the Smoky Mountains of North Carolina. Broken and angry, Cherokee Rose joins her people on the thousand-mile trek westward to Indian Territory. The journey holds many trials—not the least of which is the cruelty of the soldiers escorting them. But Cherokee Rose is determined: these men will not break her.
Lieutenant Britt Claiborne is devoted to serving his country, but he detests the way his fellow soldiers treat the Indians. He not only refuses to join in, but does all he can to stop the abuse. To the soldiers, he is a traitor. To those he helps, a champion. But Britt knows he’s only doing what he must, not just because he’s a Christian, but for a reason he’s reluctant to reveal.
Thrown together in the face of brutality, these two find themselves falling in love. They dream of marrying and finding a place to call home. But can their love survive the Trail of Tears?
“Cherokee Rose is a good story and a great way to learn about a historical event we would rather sweep under the rug.” –Lauraine Snelling, bestselling author of Amethyst
Story Behind the Book
Long captivated with the study of American history, Al and JoAnna Lacy eagerly researched the time in the 1800s when the five “civilized tribes” were forced by the U.S. government to make a one-thousand-mile journey to Indian Territory (now the state of Oklahoma). The tribes were the Cherokee, the Chickasaw, the Choctaw, the Creek, and the Seminole. Repeatedly forced to surrender their lands, the people of the Cherokee Nation, as well as those of the other four tribes, were hoping to find in Indian Territory a place to call home .