This is Jacksonland, former Indian territory obtained by Andrew Jackson through treaties and wars between 1814 and 1838. Jackson sought to resolve a conflict of the early American republic: the same land was represented on two different and mutually exclusive maps. There was a white man’s map and an Indian map. The white man’s map, the map of the United States, showed states and territories; the Indian map divided much of the same land into native nations that predated the United States. The United States had far greater power, but the Indians had the right of ancient possession. Jacksonland shows how Jackson and Cherokee leader John Ross contended for more than twenty years in America’s emerging democratic system. Flip through these maps to see what the southern U.S. really looked like when the recognized borders of Indian nations were taken into account.
Original map illustrations © 2015 Jeffrey L. Ward. Maps reproduced with permission from Penguin.