Cherokee Heritage Center dedicates monument honoring Cherokee vets
From left to right are Cherokee Heritage Center archivist Jerrid Miller; CHC Executive Director Charles Gourd; Dustin Cooper of Cooperstone Products; Ruth Faulkner, National Society United States Daughters of 1812 Oklahoma chapter president; Tribal Councilor Mary Baker Shaw; Barbara Foreman, Cherokee Nation Veterans Center executive director; and Mary Casper, National Society United States Daughters of 1812 president. The National Society United States Daughters of 1812 gifted the CHC a new monument honoring Cherokee veterans. COURTESY
PARK HILL – The Cherokee Heritage Center and National Society United States Daughters of 1812 recently hosted a monument dedication honoring Cherokee veterans who fought in the Battle of Horseshoe Bend during the War of 1812.
“This monument honors original Cherokee veterans who served on behalf of the United States during the War of 1812,” CHC Executive Director Dr. Charles Gourd said. “The Battle of Horseshoe Bend was a pivotal battle, and the contributions and sacrifices made by Cherokee warriors were invaluable. We appreciate the Daughters of 1812 organization for recognizing their significant and impactful service through this monument.”
The dedication included remarks by Barbara Foreman, Cherokee Nation Veterans Center executive director, and Ruth Faulkner, National Society United States Daughters of 1812 Oklahoma chapter president.
“Sadly, a number of survivors of the Battle of Horseshoe Bend were later victims of forced removal on the Trail of Tears,” Faulkner said. “They sacrificed and lost everything. It is our responsibility to see that these Cherokee veterans receive the recognition they deserve. We hope that this monument will help share their story and honor their legacies for generations to come.”
Once the design was finalized, it took a team of six from Cooperstone Products in Ozark, Arkansas, more than a week to fabricate the monument.
The marble memorial stands nearly 7 feet tall and weighs approximately 5,220 pounds. Its design is modeled after the Washington, D.C., monument and features information about the battle, as well as the names of the Cherokees killed and injured. It also includes a tribute to the stone that was dedicated by the CN for the Washington, D.C., monument, which was placed in 1850 and is located at the 220-foot level.
The Daughters of 1812 Oklahoma Chapter is working with the CHC genealogy department to identify those who were laid to rest within the CN so that they may honor those individuals by placing veteran seals on their headstones.
For information about the Daughters of 1812, visit www.usdaughters1812.org