Essays

The Seminoles

The Seminoles The Seminole Indians are a tribe of Indians who now have territory and reservations in Florida and Oklahoma. They once belonged to the Muskogee tribe that lived along streams in what are now southern Georgia and Alabama. The Seminoles moved to Florida and Oklahoma around 1708 when the white men drove them out of their homes and took their land. The Seminoles adjusted well to life in Florida. In the late 1700s and early 1800s Florida was a territory of Spain, that made the Seminoles Spanish citizens.

Like white men, they had black slaves, but they treated their slaves with respect. In the early 1800s General Andrew Jackson attacked the few Seminole villages left in Georgia and forced most of the Indians to flee to their relatives in Florida. Among them were a young woman and her son, Osceola, who would grow up to become a great Seminole leader. This attack started the First Seminole War. Florida was sold to the United States by Spain in 1819.

In 1823 the Seminoles signed a treaty giving up most of their land. Once they moved into their new reservations in Central Florida Andrew Jackson who was president at the time signed the Indian Removal Act which required all Seminoles to move to the Indian Territory, which is now known as Oklahoma. Most of the Seminoles wouldnt go. This started the Second Seminole War. During the Second Seminole War many of the Seminoles gave up and went to Oklahoma.

The ones that didnt had to hide deep in the Everglades where the white men couldnt find them. Osceola was taken prisoner by the United States government. He died in prison. The Florida Seminoles never signed a formal peace treaty with the United States. The Seminole Indians are still living in reservations in Florida and Oklahoma, The Seminole Tribe of Florida, Inc., has its headquarters in Hollywood, Florida, where there is a replica of a traditional chickee village.

The Seminole Indians have been in what is now The United States of America for over fifteen thousand years. They have been through many wars and have had many tragedies along the way. The Seminoles always were a strong tribe and continue to be a strong tribe.