The Battle of Pea Ridge, March 7 & 8, 1862, was the first battle of the Civil War in which Indian troops participated. About 1,000 Cherokee, the 1st and 2nd Cherokee Mounted Rifles, fought for the Confederate Army led by Brigadier General Albert Pike. During the battle, these two Cherokee regiments routed two companies of
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When Cherokee Old Settlers arrived in present-day Arkansas, they found themselves at odds with the Osage Indians, who already occupied the territory. Wars were frequent, and tensions escalated as the number of immigrant Cherokee increased. In 1817 the western migration of Cherokee was formally recognized by the US, and the first fort at Fort Smith