SPRINGFIELD, Ill. –To remember the lives lost during the brutal forced march of Potawatomi Native Americans from present-day Indiana to the western United States, state Rep. Sue Scherer, D-Decatur, offered a resolution on the Trail of Death to her colleagues in the House.
“Our nation’s history is filled with such horrific episodes of violence and injustice that cannot simply be washed away or ignored,” said Scherer. “We owe to the descendants of the Potawatomi to remember the suffering they endured and vow to never let it happen again.”
Recently Scherer introduced House Resolution 170 ,which urges the Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) to erect a marker that elucidates the site of the forced march. The Potawatomi Trail of Death is just one of many forced marches and population transfers of Native Americans that took place during the country’s consolidation. Additionally, the Potawatomi nation was also found in Illinois and lived throughout the state including present-day Chicago.
Scherer’s resolution is similar to one introduced during the 102nd General Assembly that was unfortunately never heard by her colleagues on the House floor.
“Recognizing the mistakes of the past and learning from them is essential to personal growth as well as that of our society,” said Scherer. “We can no longer hide from the past, instead, we must learn to talk about these things and understand them so we are not doomed to repeat them.”