The United States government policy of removing the Indians from their land and sending them west of the Mississippi is covered in this section.


Clifton, James A. The Pokagons, 1683-1983: Catholic Potawatomi Indians of the St. Joseph River Valley. Lanham: University Press of America, 1984.

An account of an important group of Potawatomi Indians who reside in the St.Joseph River Valley of southwestern Michigan and northern Indiana. Their significance rests in the fact that in 1833 they successfully resisted efforts of the United States government to gain their consent for removal west of the Mississippi River, their negotiation of the treaty guaranteed right to remain in Michigan, and their persistence as an organized Indian community down to the present day.

Clifton, James A. A Place of Refuge for All Time: Migration of the American Potawatomi into Upper Canada, 1830 to 1850. Ottawa: National Museums of Canada, 1975.

A study of the movement of a large portion of the Potawatomi Indian tribe from the states of Indiana, Illinois, Wisconsin and Michigan into Upper Canada in the period 1830-1850.

Collins, Willliam Frederick. John Tipton and the Indians of the Old Northwest. Dissertation. Purdue University, 1997.

While supporting President Jackson's policy of Indian removal Tipton introduced a comprehensive Indian territorial bill to protect Indian emigrants.

Copway, George. Organization of a New Indian Territory, East of the Missouri River. NY: S.W. Benedict, 1850.

Arguments and reasons submitted to the members of the Senate and House of Representatives of the 31st Congress of the United States by the Indian Chief Kah-Ge-Gah-Bouh, or George Copway.

Ella, George M. Isaac McCoy: Apostle of the Western Trail. Springfield, MO: Particular Baptist Press, 2002.

McCoy was a Baptist missionary at the Carey Station in Michigan and he believed the Indians would be better off in their own state.

Horsman, Reginald. The Origins of Indian Removal, 1815-1824. East Lansing, MI: Historical Society of Michigan, 1970.

Clarence M. Burton Memorial Lecture, 1969.

McCoy, Isaac. Remarks on the Practicability of Indian Reform, Embracing Their Colonization. NY: Gray and Bunce, 1829.

McCoy's reasons for thinking it would be best if the Indians were moved.

McCoy, Isaac. Report to the House of Representatives to Remove Indians Westward. Washington, GPO, 1829.

McCoy’s report on his trip west of the Mississippi exploring for places which would be good to remove the Indians to.

Miles, William. "Enamoured of Colonization": Isaac McCoy's Plan of Indian Reform. Mt. Pleasant, MI: n.p., 1971.

McCoy argued for Indian removal.

Neumeyer, Elizabeth. Indian Removal in Michigan 1833-1855. Thesis. Central Michigan University, 1968.

'The Chippewa, Ottawa, and a number of Potawatomi were not removed for a variety of reasons; among these were the unattractiveness of their northern lands to the Michigan settler, the Indians' financial value to the traders, the philanthropic efforts of missionaries and Michigan citizens to keep the Indians in Michigan and the Indians own tenacity and perseverance in resisting removal.

Schultz, George A. An Indian Canaan: Isaac McCoy and the Vision of an Indian State. Norman, OK: University of Oklahoma Press, 1972.

McCoy was primarily a social reformer. An intense man with strong views, he attacked the system of law and custom by which he believed the American Indians had been kept in bondage from the time of their first contact with the white man. His object was to free the Indian from these restraints - to establish an organized political state offering self-government, opportunities for education, and economic assistance for the tribesmen.

Speeches on the Passage of the Bill for the Removal of Indians, Delivered in the Congress of the United States, April and May, 1830. Boston, MA: Perkins and Marvin, 1830.

The speeches, both pro and con, in Congress on the Indian Removal bill. Not necessarily Michigan but the arguments are the same.

Tipton, John. The John Tipton Papers. Compiled by Glen A. Blackburn. Indianapolis, IN: Indiana Historical Society, 1942. 3 volumes.

Volume 1: 1809-1827. Treaty negotiations with the Miami and Potawatimi. Carey Mission. Volume 2: Indian Removal. Carey Mission. Volume 3: Removal

United States. Congress. Persons Employed in the Indian Department, January 22, 1834. US 23d Cong. 1st sess. House 60. Washington, DC: 1834.

A statement of the names of persons employed in the removal and subsistence of the Indians.

United States. Congress. Removal of the Chippewa, Ottawa, and Pottawatomie Indians. 28th Congress, 1st Sess. House of Representatives, 1844.

The treaty of 1833 was to move them just north of the state of Missouri. Status of the Removal process.

United States. Office of Indian Affairs. Message Communicating Information in Relation to the Removal of Chippewa Indians from the Mineral Lands of Lake Superior. Washington, DC, 1846.

United States.War Department. Letter from the Secretary of War Recommending the Removal of the Swan Creek and Black River Bands of Chippewa Indians, January 29, 1839. Washington, DC, 1839.

United States. War Department. Revised Regulations no. 4 Concerning the Emigration of Indians. Washington, DC, 1837.

"The removal and subsistence of Indians have been committed to the Commissioner of Indian Affairs, and the following regulations, for conducting that service, and for the accountability therein, are adopted."

Wyeth, Walter N. Isaac McCoy. Philadelphia, PA: W.N. Wyeth, 1895.

The removal advocate and his work as a missionary at Carey Mission.​


Anson, Bert."Chief Francis Lafontaine and the Miami Emigration from Indiana." Indiana Magazine of History LX (September 1964): 241-268.

Lafontaine was chief from 1841 to 1847 and his task was to salvage a few economic benefits for a defeated and deteriorating tribe.

Bauman, Robert F. "Kansas, Canada, or Starvation." Michigan History 36 (September 1952): 287-299.

This article is about the Ottawa forced removal from Michigan as the result of the 1830 Removal Act.

Cass, Lewis. "Considerations on the Present State of the Indians, and Their Removal to the West of the Mississippi." North American Review (January 1830).

Cass argues that removal would improve the lives of the Indians.

Edmunds, R. David. "The Prairie Potawatomi Removal of 1833." Indiana Magazine of History LXVIII (September 1972): 240-253.

The removal of the Prairie Potawatomi during 1833 was characteristic of various Indian removals during this period.

Gordon, Leon M. "The Red Man’s Retreat From Northern Indiana." Indiana Magazine of History 46 (March 1950): 39-60.

How the Native Americans were removed from the area.

Gray, Susan E. "Limits and Possibilities: White-Indian Relations in Western Michigan in the Era of Removal." Michigan Historical Review 20 (Fall 1994): 71-91.

The settlers and Indians had a relationship based on mutual need and congruent values.

"Journal of an Emigrating Party of Pottawattomi Indians, 1838." Indiana Magazine of History 21 (December 1925): 315-336; 46 (December 148): 393-408.

A day by day record of the trip from Twin Lakes to the Osage River.

Klopfenstein, Carl G. "The Removal of the Wyandots from Ohio." Ohio Historical Quarterly 66 (April 1957): 119-136.

The history of the removal of woodland Indians of the Eastern half of the United States to new homes in the West in the 1830’s and 1840’s was a significant phase of the westward movement of the white man across the continent.

McClurken, James M. "Ottawa Adaptive Strategies to Indian Removal." Michigan Historical Review 12 (Spring 1986): 29-55.

McClurken examines how the Ottawa of Michigan successfully used the natural and human resources at their disposal to avoid removal to Kansas or Minnesota between 1836 and 1855.

McKee, Irving. "The Centennial of ‘The Trail of Death'." Indiana Magazine of History 35 (March 1939): 27-41.

A history of the Pottawatomi removal. The plan for Indian removal from Michigan and the Indians fight to remain.

Neumeyer, Elizabeth. Editor."A Michigan ‘Trail of Tears'." Heritage Battle Creek (Fall 1991): 54-59; (Spring 1992): 62-69; (Spring 1993): 60-66.

Reprint of several original sources on the Potawatomie removal from Michigan.

"Potawatomie Trail of Death." News From Indian Country (Mid-September 1996): 11 B.

The Trail of Death was the forced removal of the Potawatomi from northern Indiana to eastern Kansas in the fall of 1838.

Prucha, Francis Paul. 'Indian Removal and the Great American Desert." Indiana Magazine of History LIX (December 1963): 298-322.

There is no doubt the removal policy brought hardship and injustice to the Indians, but the removal plan was not a scheme to dump the Indian into the Great American Desert.

Rofert, Stewart."Removal: An excerpt from The Miami Indians of Indiana." Traces 8 (Spring 1996): 16-19. Miami removal.

"The Removal of the Potawatomi to Kansas." News From Indian Country 9 (Late September 1995): 23.

Reprinted from People of the Fire.

Satz, Ronald N."Indian Policy in the Jacksonian Era: The Old Northwest as a Test Case." Michigan History 60 (Spring 1976): 71-93.

What can happen to a politically powerless minority in a democratic society.

Shriver, Phillip R. "Know Them No More Forever: The Miami Removal of 1846." Timeline 10 (November/December 1993): 30-41.

As land hungry whites demanded more and more, the Miami Nation finally agreed to abandon its ancient homeland.

Smith, Dwight L. Editor. "The Attempted Potawatomi Emigration of 1839." Indiana Magazine of History 45 (March 1945): 51-80.

Attempted Potawatomi emigration of 1839 told with journals and letters of the time.

Smith, Dwight L. "An Unsuccessful Negotiation for Removal of the Wyandot Indians from Ohio, 1834." Ohio State Archaeological and Historical Quarterly 58 (July 1949): 305-331.

An unsuccessful attempt to negotiate a treaty with the Wyandot is documented.

Smith, Dwight L. "Jacob Hull's Detachment of the Potawatomi Emigration of 1838." Indiana Magazine of History 45 (March 1945): 285-288.

Hull's journal from Logansport. His detachment left three weeks after the main removal group.

Spooner, A. L. "Trail of Death." Totem Pole 39 (March 4, 1957): 1-4.

Pottawatomi forced march.

Stuart, Benjamin F."The Deportation of Menominee and His Tribe of the Pottawattomie Indians." Indiana Magazine of History 18 (September 1922): 255-265.

The deportation of Chief Menominee and his tribe from their reservation at Twin Lakes in 1838 covers one of the darkest pages in the history of Indiana.

Trennert, Robert A. "The Business of Indian Removal: Deporting the Potawatomi from Wisconsin." Wisconsin Magazine of History 63 (Autumn 1979): 36-50.

The welfare of the Indian appears to have been the consideration furthest from the mind of contractors, the government, or the white residents of Wisconsin.

Trennert, Robert A. "A Trader’s Role in the Potawatomi Removal from Indiana: The Case of George W. Ewing." The Old Northwest 4 (March 1978): 3-24.

Removal was a national policy but government policy on the frontier did not operate in a vacuum. The traders were a vital part of policy implementation.​


Anderson, Joe. "Removal of the Ottawas from Maumee, Ohio from 1837-1839." CMU Term Paper, 1968. (Cannot be copied)

Clifton, James. Papers. 69 boxes.

One of the topics Clifton researched was Removal. He gathered many documents on the subject.

Keller, Mark. "The Treaty of Saginaw, 1819: Failure of Indian Removal Policy in Michigan." CMU Term Paper, 1973. (Cannot be copied)

Leatherbury, John M. "History of Events Culminating in the Removal of the Nottawa-Sippe Band of Potawatomie." 1977. (Dain Mss)

Neumeyer, Elizabeth. "A Narrative Account of the Remowal of the Potawatomi Indians of Michigan to the West, 1828-1848." CMU Term Paper, 1967. (Cannot be copied)

United States. Records of the Commissary General of Subsistence. Selected Muster Rolls Relating to Potawatomi and Ottawa Emigration, 1833-1835. Washington, DC: National Archives. 1 roll.

Williams, John D." Emigration of the Chippewa Indians out of Michigan in 1839." CMU Term Paper, 1966. (Cannot be copied)

Williams, Michael B. "To Him that Hath…" 1 folder.

Copy of an undated speech by Williams, a Native American, about the treatment of the Potawatomi Indians by the United States government.