A few weeks ago, I wrote about my Native American heritage and the story of what became known as the Trail of Tears when some 100,000 American Indians were forcibly removed from the eastern United States to what was called Indian Territory, which is now the state of Oklahoma.
I'd like to share this legend with you, too.
When the Trail of Tears started in 1838, the mothers of the Cherokee were grieving and crying so much, they were unable to help their children survive the journey. No better symbol exists of the pain and suffering of the Trail Where They Cried than the Cherokee Rose. The chiefs prayed for a sign to lift the mother's spirits and give them strength to care for their children.
From that day forward, a beautiful new flower, a rose, grew wherever a mother's tear fell to the ground. The rose is white, for the mother's tears. It has a gold center, for the gold taken from the Cherokee lands, and seven leaves on each stem that represent the seven Cherokee clans that made the journey. To this day, the Cherokee Rose prospers along the route of the "Trail of Tears". The Cherokee Rose is now the official flower of the State of Georgia.