Bill to return land to the Cherokee passes House

A Tennessee Congressman's bill has passed the U.S. House of Representatives
Chuck Fleischmann

Congressman Chuck Fleischmann

TENNESSEE (WDEF) — More than 76 acres of land may be returned to the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians. The U.S. House of Representatives passed the bill, officials said on Tuesday.

U.S. Representative Chuck Fleischmann’s bill passed the House by a unanimous vote.

The bill is called the Eastern Band of Cherokee Historic Lands Reacquisition Act.

Fleischmann said, “The federal government’s policy to remove the Cherokee People from Tennessee and the surrounding states was misguided and wrong. My bill will correct this historical tragedy and make good on the many promises made over the years to the Eastern Band of Cherokee.”

This bill will impact 76.1 acres of land along the Little Tennessee River and Tellico Reservoir in Monroe County.

It includes lands from Tanasi Memorial, Chota Memorial and Sequoyah Museum.

Additionally, the bill will place the land into trust for the benefit of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians.

“It is on these 76 sacred acres the Cherokee People have honored the birth and life of Sequoyah, one of the most influential and important Native Americans to have lived. It is essential that the land is returned to the Eastern Band of Cherokee, so the legacy of Sequoyah and the Eastern Band is taught for generations to come,” said Rep. Fleischmann. “I hope my colleagues in the Senate recognize the crucial importance of returning and preserving this sacred land and act quickly to send the bill to President Biden for his signature.”

The 118th Congress, 117th Congress, 116th Congress and the 115th Congress have passed the bill.

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