August 14, 1999

Greetings. I have taken the oath of office of principal chief and commit to you my dedication to fulfill my oath to the people and the constitution of the Cherokee Nation.

The Cherokee Nation has suffered turmoil, crisis, chaos, and pain for the past several years. All agree that healing, rebuilding, and renewal are needed. Where do we turn for the guidance to bind our wounds, design our future, refresh and re-create our energy? Where does our journey go from here?

We must look to our history and culture to determine what values and attributes were responsible for carrying us through trials, tribulations, and challenges of the past. What carried us through the 1720 smallpox epidemic, the 1760 frontier wars, ...

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