1 1 Mankiller Flats In 1984, Deputy Chief Wilma Mankiller participated in the reunion between the tribal council of the Cherokee Nation of Oklahoma and the tribal council of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians on the historic Cherokee lands in eastern Tennessee. This meeting, the first full tribal council since the beginning of the Trail of Tears in 1838, occurred at Red Clay, Tennessee, on the Georgia state line. Red Clay served as the last capi- tal of the original Cherokee Nation prior to removal. The state of Tennes- see declared Red Clay a 275-acre state historical area in 1979. A highlight of the joint tribal council was the dedication of an eternal flame monu- ment at the state park (Maltby 1984). The eternal flame, carried by two runners from the Eastern Band Cherokee reservation, became a symbol of building one fire—to put away differences, come together as a people, and work for the common good. The fire still burns at Red Clay and this event had a great historical and emotional impact on the Cherokee people. At the reunion, Deputy Chief Wilma explained: “We’re one tribe in a historical sense, we expect to, one, sort of renew an old kinship and, two, explore a lot of issues that might be common to both tribes” (Maltby 1984). The Eastern Band comprised the descendants of those who had escaped into the caves and hills during the Removal roundup. Those in attendance at the reunion also included Tennessee governor Lamar Alexander and Iron Eyes Cody, who was depicted as a Native American crying when he saw pollution in the Keep America Beautiful—Ad Council television spots in the 1970s. About 20,000 people attended, including at least 3,000
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