Miccosukee Indians

Miccosukee Tribe of Indians
According to the Miccosukee, “micco” means leader and “sukee” means pig or hog, and refers to any native group that refused to surrender during the Seminole Wars.
President Andrew Jackson signed the Indian Removal Act on May 28, 1830. All Indians east of the Mississippi River were to be moved to reservations west of the Mississippi. Some bands of people went peacefully. Some did not. The Cherokee people were forced to walk west to the Arkansas Reservation on what would become known as the Trail of Tears resulting in the deaths of 4,000 people.

Other groups refused to be relocated to the Indian Territory. One of these groups of a few hundred people traveled deep into the peninsula and disappeared into the Everglades. Efforts were made to ferret them out and remove them, but this band of Indians fought until the government gave up and let them stay. Reduced to approximately 60 people, they disappeared once again into the Everglades where they continued to live relatively unmolested during the continued settlement of the Florida peninsula
Construction of the road that would become known as the Tamiami Trail in the mid to late 1920s intruded on the relatively isolated existence of these Everglades Indians. They would become formally recognized as the Miccosukee Tribe after Buffalo Tiger brought a group to Cuba in 1959 to ask Fidel Castro to recognize their nation, which he did, legally establishing their existence and their sovereign domestic nation status within the United States. January 11, 1962 the Miccosukee Constitution was approved by the U.S. Secretary of the Interior and the Miccosukee Tribe of Florida was officially established. Today the more than 600 Miccosukee Indians are the descendents of the approximately 60 left to live in the Everglades at the end of the Seminole War.