personal picture -

Black Indians and Trail of Tears

Path: Market African Americans African Americans Studies Black Indians

African American and Native American Heritage

My primary interest in this writing about the Black Seminoles is due to my family heritage being of African Hebrew, Spanish Jew, Gullah, and Muscogee (Creek) ancestry. Throughout my website, I seek to build a sense of Prosperity Consciousness - the act of building a holistic mindset for repairing the world (Tikkun Olam). It is extremely important to build a sense of family unity with our ancestry. As "Holistic Mindset" means - Emphasizing the importance of the whole and the interdependence of its parts; The best way I know to do so (repairing the world), is to learn and express our common or shared history.


This award-winning feature examines a minority group that is discounted and often ignored by mainstream media. Sharing a common past, many African Americans and Native Americans have combined to create a unique culture that has meshed the traditions and fine heritage of both. Little known, little documented and often marginalized, this group has become all but invisible at the dawn of the new millennium.

Seminole Indian Tribe History

"The Seminole, before the removal of the main body to Indian Territory, consisted chiefly of descendants of Muscogee (Creeks) and Hitchiti from the Lower Creek towns, with a considerable number of refugees from the Upper Creeks after the Creek war, together with remnants of Yamasee and other conquered tribes, Yuchi, and a large Negro element from runaway slaves. When Hawkins wrote, in 1799, they had 7 towns, which increased to 20 or more as they overran the peninsula."

Seminole Indian Tribe History

Black Indians: An American Story


Confounding the Color Line: The (American) Indian - Black Experience in North America



This compelling documentary feature gives the Native American perspective on Indian Boarding Schools and uncovers the dark history of U.S. Government policy which took Indian children from their homes, forced them into boarding schools and enacted a policy of educating them in the ways of Western Society. This award-winning film gives a voice to the countless Indian children forced through a system designed to strip them of their Native American culture, heritage and traditions.

Trail of Tears - A Native American Documentary Collection

Native Americans have experienced a history full of oppression and racism. Since the period when Native tribes were found on this continent at the time of its "discovery", the British and American governments disregarded Native Americans as the owners of the territory they occupied and used aggressive force to take their lands and destroy their people.

This harrowing and compelling compilation of 4 award-winning documentary programs chronicles the struggles of the Native American culture from the forced relocation known as the Trail of Tears to the current issues faced by America's aboriginal people.


This two hour documentary explores one of the great historical tragedies of America's aboriginal people. In 1830, eager to gain access to lands inhabited by Native Americans, President Andrew Jackson enacted the Indian Removal Act which forced the Cherokee Nation to leave their homeland and relocate into unchartered territory. Many of these forced settlers suffered from exposure, disease and starvation and upon arriving in Indian Territory, they arrived with no past and no future.

The Five Civilized Tribes: Cherokee, Chickasaw, Choctaw, Creek, Seminole (Civilization of the American Indian)


Trail of Tears - A Native American Documentary Collection


This comprehensive look at the ancient health and healing methods of American aboriginals uncovers the invaluable contributions that Native Americans made to early frontier living, showing how many of the healing plants and herbs that early European settlers were taught by the aboriginal people are still important sources of today's modern methods of maintaining health.

From other sources

The Trail of Tears Continues for Black Indians - Issue 66

"In 1830, Congress passed the Indian Removal Act, which was signed into law by President Andrew Jackson. The act argued that, "no state could achieve proper culture, civilization, and progress, as long as Indians remained within its boundaries." The bill called for the removal of all Indians in the southeastern United States to the territory west of the Mississippi River. In 1838, the first groups started out on their 1,000-mile trek, which became known as the Trail of Tears because of the horrors faced, such as disease, lack of food, water and bad weather."

"Indian nations such as the Cherokee, Choctaw, Creek, Kickapoo, Seminole, Wyandotte, Lenapi, Chickasaw and Mohawk had their lands taken away because settlers and corporations wanted more land, according to historians."

Trail of Tears
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

"The Trail of Tears is a name given to the forced relocation and movement of Native American nations from southeastern parts of the United States following the Indian Removal Act of 1830. The removal included many members of the Cherokee, Muscogee (Creek), Seminole, Chickasaw, and Choctaw nations, among others in the United States, from their homelands to Indian Territory (eastern sections of the present-day state of Oklahoma). The phrase originated from a description of the removal of the Choctaw Nation in 1831."

"Many Native Americans suffered from exposure, disease and starvation en route to their destinations. Many died, including 4,000 of the 13,000 relocated Cherokee, intermarried and accompanying European-Americans, and the 2,000 African-American free blacks and slaves owned by the Cherokee they took with them.[2][3] European Americans and African American freedmen and slaves also participated in the Chickasaw, Choctaw, Muscogee Creek and Seminole forced relocations."

"In 1831, the Cherokee, Chickasaw, Choctaw, Muscogee Creek, and Seminole (sometimes collectively referred to as the Five Civilized Tribes) were living as autonomous nations in what would be called the American Deep South. The process of cultural transformation (proposed by George Washington and Henry Knox) was gaining momentum, especially among the Cherokee and Choctaw.[5] Andrew Jackson continued and renewed the political and military effort for the removal of the Native Americans from these lands with the passage of the Indian Removal Act of 1830."

"In 1831 the Choctaw were the first to be removed, and they became the model for all other removals. After the Choctaw, the Seminole were removed in 1832, the Creek in 1834, then the Chickasaw in 1837, and finally the Cherokee in 1838.[6] After removal, some Native Americans remained in their ancient homelands - the Choctaw are found in Mississippi, the Seminole in Florida, the Creek in Alabama, and the Cherokee in North Carolina. A limited number of non-native Americans (including African-Americans - usually as slaves) also accompanied the Native American nations on the trek westward.[6] By 1837, 46,000 Native Americans from these southeastern states had been removed from their homelands thereby opening 25 million acres (100,000 km2) for predominantly white settlement."

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

"The Seminole are a Native Americans in the United States people originally of Florida, who now reside primarily there and in Oklahoma. The Seminole nation emerged in a process of ethnogenesis out of groups of other Native Americans and a small number of escaped slaves. They were composed most significantly of Creek from what is now Georgia, the Florida Panhandle and Alabama, who settled in the southern and central part of the Florida peninsula in the early 18th century.[1] The word Seminole is a corruption of cimarrón, a Spanish term for "runaway" or "wild one", historically used for certain Native American groups in Florida."

"After an initial period of colonization in Florida, during which they distanced themselves increasingly from other Creek groups, the Seminole established a thriving trade network during the British and second Spanish periods (roughly 1767–1821).[5] The tribe expanded considerably during this time, and was further supplemented from the late 18th century with the appearance of the Black Seminoles – free blacks and escaped slaves who settled in communities near Seminole towns, where they paid tribute to the Native Americans in exchange for protection.[6] However, tensions grew between the Seminole and the United States to the north, leading to a series of conflicts known as the Seminole Wars (1818–1858).[6] Over the course of the wars most Seminoles were forced to relocate west of the Mississippi River in a process of Indian removal. "

"During the colonial years, the Seminole were on good terms with both the Spanish and the British. In 1784, the treaty ending the American Revolutionary War transferred British rule of Florida to Spain. The Spanish Empire's decline enabled the Seminole to settle more deeply into Florida. They were led by a dynasty of chiefs founded in the 18th century by Cowkeeper. This dynasty lasted until 1842, when the US forced the majority of Seminole to move from Florida to the Indian Territory (modern Oklahoma) after the Second Seminole War."

"There is also a village of Black Seminoles who have lived at Red Bays on Andros Island in the Bahamas since the 1820s."

Black Seminoles
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

"The Black Seminoles is a term used by modern historians for the descendants of free blacks and some runaway slaves (maroons), mostly Gullahs who escaped from coastal South Carolina and Georgia rice plantations into the Spanish Florida wilderness beginning as early as the late 17th century. By the early 19th century, they had often formed communities near the Seminole Indians."

"Together, the two groups formed a multi-ethnic and bi-racial alliance. Today, Black Seminole descendants still live in Florida, rural communities in Oklahoma and Texas, and in the Bahamas and Northern Mexico. In the 19th century, the Florida "Black Seminoles" were called "Seminole Negroes" by their white American enemies and Estelusti (Black People), by their Indian allies. Modern Black Seminoles are known as "Seminole Freedmen" in Oklahoma, "Black Indians" in the Bahamas, and Mascogos in Mexico. The Black Seminole Scouts served in the United States Army during the 19th century."

"As early as 1689, African slaves fled from the South Carolina Lowcountry to Spanish Florida seeking freedom. Under an edict from King Charles II of Spain in 1693, the black fugitives received liberty in exchange for defending the Spanish settlers at St. Augustine. The Spanish organized the black volunteers into a militia; their settlement at Fort Mose, founded in 1738, was the first legally sanctioned free black town in North America."

"Not all the slaves escaping south found military service in St. Augustine to their liking. It is likely that many more runaway slaves sought refuge in wilderness areas in Northern Florida where their knowledge of tropical agriculture—and resistance to tropical diseases—served them well. Most of the blacks who pioneered Florida were Gullah people who escaped from the rice plantations in South Carolina (and later Georgia). As Gullah, they had preserved much of their African language in an Afro-English based Creole, along with cultural practices and African leadership structure. The Gullah pioneers built their own settlements based on rice and corn agriculture. They were allies to Indians escaping into Florida at the same time."

"In 1763 the British took over rule in Florida, in an exchange of territory with the Spanish west of the Mississippi, of former French lands. The area was still considered a sanctuary for fugitive slaves, as it was lightly settled, and many sought refuge near growing American Indian settlements."

"Florida had been a refuge for runaway slaves for at least 70 years by the time of the American Revolution. Communities of Black Seminoles were established on the outskirts of major Seminole towns.[4] A new influx of freedom-seeking blacks reached Florida during the American Revolution (1775–83). Several thousand American slaves agreed to fight for the British in exchange for liberty and were called black Loyalists. Those who chose freedom and resettlement were evacuated by the British along with their own troops from southern cities such as Charleston, as well as New York, and transported to the Caribbean, New Brunswick and England. (Florida was under British control throughout the conflict.) "

"The Black Seminole culture that took shape after 1800 was a dynamic mixture of African, Native American, Spanish, and slave traditions. "

African-Seminole relations

"By the early 19th century, maroons (free blacks and runaway slaves) and the Seminole were in regular contact in Florida, where they evolved a system of relations unique among North American Native Americans and blacks. In exchange for paying an annual tribute of livestock and crops, black prisoners or slaves found sanctuary among the Seminole. Seminoles, in turn, acquired an important strategic ally in a sparsely populated region."

"Typically, many or most members of the Black Seminole communities were not identified as slaves of individual Native American chiefs. Black Seminoles lived in their own independent communities, elected their own leaders, and could amass wealth in cattle and crops. Most importantly, they bore arms for self-defense. Florida real estate records show that the Seminole and Black Seminole people owned large quantities of Florida land. In some cases, a portion of that Florida land is still owned by the Seminole and Black Seminole descendants in Florida."

"Under the comparatively free conditions, the Black Seminoles flourished. U.S. Army Lieutenant George McCall recorded his impressions of a Black Seminole community in 1826: 'We found these negroes in possession of large fields of the finest land, producing large crops of corn, beans, melons, pumpkins, and other esculent vegetables. ... I saw, while riding along the borders of the ponds, fine rice growing; and in the village large corn-cribs were filled, while the houses were larger and more comfortable than those of the Indians themselves.'"



The African American Experiences is a collection of Black Studies to understand the Past, Present and Future of the People called African American!

"Wealth is to have your own Land, Language and Culture! Where is the Land of the African American? What is the Language? And, Where is the Culture of the people?"



Follow Profitincome on Twitter Visit Profitincome
on facebook

eXTReMe Tracker