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Great Smoky Mountains honors all 573 tribal nations for Native American Heritage Month

Officials said that the Great Smoky Mountains National Park sits on the Tsalagi's traditional lands, commonly known as the Cherokee.

Native American Heritage Month is in November, and officials with Great Smoky Mountains National Park are honoring all 573 sovereign tribal nations in the U.S.

They made a post on Twitter about the history of the national park. In it, they said that the park sits on traditional lands of the Tsalagi, commonly known as the Cherokee. They also showed off a historical picture of the park from when it was still developing, in 1920.

Officials also posted about how the lands belonging to the Tsalagi once spanned more than 140,000 square miles. After 35 major land cessions before the Trail of Tears in 1838, the land was eroded to around 100 square miles.

The removal policies that ended in the deaths of thousands of Native Americans in the Trail of Tears began during Andrew Jackson's presidency. The U.S. officially apologized for past injustices against native tribes in December 2009, under President Barack Obama.

The bill did not call for reparations and included a disclaimer that it wasn't meant to support legal claims against the U.S.

Native American Heritage Month is meant to recognize Native American history. It started in 1990, under President George H. W. Bush.