Of Cherokee and Scottish heritage, Ellis was the very first person in modern history to walk the 900-mile Cherokee Trail of Tears. His book about that journey, Walking the Trail, One Manís Journey Along the Cherokee Trail of Tears, was published in 1991 by Delacorte Press. Nominated for a Pulitzer Prize and a National Book Award and in print for fifteen years, the book has sold over 250,000 copies. A Native American classic, it is required reading in some US high schools and colleges. Published in both German and English, it was anthologized by the publisher Norton In Short: Brief Creative Non-Fiction and in Travelersí Tales America. Readers Digest highlighted it in Quotable Quote and it is noted in Toastmasters International.
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