Nancy Still and The Trail of Tears

NancyStatueThe history of our village of Vinings goes back to the early nineteenth century when the area was Indian territory. Native American civilization was found in villages on both sides of the Chattahoochee River. The women and children farmed and the men hunted and traded.

Nancy Still, a Cherokee, represents the plight of the Cherokees during that era. Nancy, believed to be a widow, held a farm that she and her six children had improved. In 1832 Cobb County was formed, including what would be Vinings and land lotteries were held. Ignoring the Supreme Court’s position that Indian land could not be taken, Georgia passed the Indian Removal Act of 1832, which said that any Native Americans found on land won in the lottery could be removed.

In 1835 Still passionately appealed to Georgia’s governor Wilson Lumpkin to let her keep the land to which she was rightfully entitled. Her plea was recorded as “my little children has made all the improvements with thare hand. if we are turned out my children will perish.” Her plea fell on deaf ears and the family was forced to leave.They joined 20,000 other Cherokees on the 1200 mile journey to Oklahoma known as The Trail of Tears. Her fate is unknown as there is no record of her reaching Oklahoma. The statue of Still holding a gilded peach was made by Hilarie Johnston in 1991 and stands in the lower courtyard of the Paces West Office Complex at 2727 Paces Ferry Road.

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