Black Indians, Pompey Fixico w/ historian & author Dr. Katz

Posted in Audio, History, Interviews, Media Archive, Native Americans/First Nation, United States on 2013-06-14 01:04Z by Steven

Black Indians, Pompey Fixico w/ historian & author Dr. Katz

The Gist of Freedom
BlogTalk Radio

Leslie Gist, Host

Join The Gist of Freedom as we welcome Pompey Fixico and William L. Katz.  Pompey Fixico ancestors fought US slave-catchers and military units for 42 years in Florida.

Mr. Katz and Mr.Fixico will discuss the three Seminole wars, their goals courage and achievements as seen through his ancestors.

The legacy of  Wild Cat and John Horse will also be discussed as it relates to how they brilliantly led the Seminoles!

Mr. Katz’s book Black Indians has three chapters on this unknown American story. Their current leader, William Dub Warrior, has said:

Black Indians is not only one of the  most  thoroughly researched and accurate book on  the subject, it is he best written account I have  come across.”

William “Dub” Warrior, Chief of the John Horse Band, Texas and Old Mexico Seminoles

Listen to the episode here. Download the episode here.

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A Health Survey of the Seminole Indians

Posted in Anthropology, Health/Medicine/Genetics, Media Archive, Native Americans/First Nation, United States on 2011-06-24 04:02Z by Steven

A Health Survey of the Seminole Indians

Yale Journal Biology and Medicine
Volume 6, Number 2 (December 1933)
pages 155–177

H. Hamlin

Among the numerous tribes of Indians living in Oklahoma the Seminoles offer some interesting phenomena for study which may contribute information on the subject of race mixture and its relationship to environment and health. The early history of the tribe in its original habitat of the Florida Everglades is not without romantic color, embodying as it does the Spanish occupation of the Southeastern United States and the stormy times before and after the War of 1812 that culminated in the Florida purchase. Many other tribes besides the Seminoles were occupying rich lands that European settlers coveted for plantations so that agitation for removal of the Indians by coercion gained increasing favor. Slavery augmented the conflict since negro deserters were continually seeking refuge among the Indians, especially in parts that now constitute Georgia and Florida.

It is recorded that as early as 1785 bands of Cherokees, Choctaws, Delawares and Shawnees began migrating west to settle because of pressure from whites along the borders of their old domain and the scarcity of game. The transfer of Indians comprising the Cherokee, Choctaw, Chickasaw, Creek and Seminole tribes from their indigenous habitat to lands in what is now the state of Oklahoma was carried on with continuous difficulty until after 1840. The government was forced to conduct two expensive military campaigns against the Seminoles, and over a thousand recalcitrants refused to be caught and expatriated. These survivors remained in Florida. By 1906 around 100,000 individuals, of whom only about 26.4 per cent were full-bloods, had been officially enrolled as the Five Civilized Tribes and had been given individual land grants.

From the foregoing historical outline the possibilities of comparative study on the present-day Seminoles in both Oklahoma and Florida can be understood. Such a project was sponsored by the Laboratory of Anthropology at Santa Fe, New Mexico, during the summer of 1932 and placed under the direction of Dr. W. M. Krogman of the Anatomy Department of Western Reserve University. The greater part of the work resolved itself into the compilation of detailed anthropometric measurements of selected individuals. The tribal rolls, upon which the government based the land allotments, made feasible the deduction of rather accurate genealogical tables for four or five generations. The statements of every subject concerning his or her family were checked and protracted further by comparison with Campbell’s Abstract of Seminole Indian Census Cards, which proved an invaluable source of information. It is hoped that opportunity may avail to correlate the findings on physical measurements and other criteria of the Oklahoma Seminoles with the results of a similar procedure among the Seminoles still living in Florida, the latter serving as a control group…

…After the Creek war of 1813-14 a great many Creeks from the upper Creek country moved into Florida. They increased the population considerably and began mixing with the predominant Hitchiti (Oconee) racial element. This new strain was definitely Creek and later came to be identified with the Seminole. Such an interpretation is substantiated further by Wissler’, who classifies the languages of the Upper Creeks, Lower Creeks, and Seminoles together under the northern division of Muskogee proper. It seems clear that the Florida Seminoles were originally derived from the non-Muskogean Hitchiti of Georgia admixed with the earlier Floridian Yamasee and Yuchi, and this combination later admixed with Muskogee, mostly Creek. Before his departure for the west therefore, the Florida Seminole undoubtedly had a high percentage of Creek blood; and the two by impact of association had become linked enough in language and culture to obscure their separate origin.

Before the advent of Seminole stock in the west there was unquestionably an appreciable amount of negro blood present. This was a result of slavery, which reached its greatest development as a social practice in the Southeast during the latter part of the eighteenth and the first half of the nineteenth centuries. Large numbers of slaves apparently succeeded in escaping from their masters to gain sanctuary among the Florida Indians. It would seem that negroes were usually anxious to make their way into Florida where they were often able to acquire a kind of group independence among the Indians. A large number of negroes accompanied the Five Tribes on their westward migration, including slaves of the Indians as well as those who had intermarried and their offspring. To the Creek fraction represented in Florida Seminole blood, therefore, must be added an unknown but quite definite component representing negro admixture acquired prior to removal. There probably had been some infusion of white blood with the Seminoles through Spanish intermixture before they took up residence in the west. Nash”, Giddings and Bartram’ predicate its occurrence in their writings, but the emphasis on the negro element is much greater. According to Nash”, the amount of white blood in the modern Florida Seminoles has increased to some extent, and this view is confirmed by others, notably Hrdlikcka. On the other hand negro intermixture among the present-day descendants of the original Florida Seminoles has declined. The population has been reported to be around 500 for a number of decades so that investigators have been able to tabulate race crossing with some certainty’0. White half-castes are granted full status by the Indians and an increase in their number is predicted for the future. Presumably, the propagation of white blood in the Florida Indians since the Seminole wars may be attributed to the offspring of unsanctioned Indian-White matings…

Pure Seminole—Age 44.

Seminole-Negro—Age 25.

Seminole-White—Age 34.

Read the entire article here.

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Red and Black – A Divided Seminole Nation: Davis v. U.S.

Posted in Articles, History, Law, Media Archive, Native Americans/First Nation, Slavery on 2010-08-11 17:41Z by Steven

Red and Black – A Divided Seminole Nation: Davis v. U.S.

Kansas Journal of Law & Public Policy
University of Kansas School of Law
Volume 14, Number 3 (Spring 2006)
pages 607-638

Joyce A. McCray Pearson, Director, Law Library and Associate Professor of Law
University of Kansas

One of the longest unwritten chapters in the history of the United States is that of the relations of the Negroes and the Indians. The Indians were already here when the white men came and the Negroes brought in soon after to serve as a subject race found among the Indians one of their means of escape.1

There is no black Seminole…2

If you want to keep the bloodlines going, you got to keep’em separate…. the tribe is not trying to rewrite history-it’s just that the common fight for freedom that brought blacks and native people together 200 years ago doesn’t apply anymore.3

When we all started out, we started out as brothers. We fought together as brothers. Our blood ran together the same. When we settled we were still brothers. We were brothers until this money came up and then they went to pulling away.4

These sentiments and opposing points of view regarding the identity of Black Seminoles is at the heart of the matter in the case of Davis v. United States. The history of the Black Seminoles reaches as far back as the 17th century.  But the most recent history began in 1950 and 1951 when the Seminole Nation of Oklahoma (SNO) and Seminoles living in Florida filed claims for compensation for Florida lands ceded to the United States in 1823. In an attempt to quiet title to land taken from the Seminoles, in 1976 a $16 million judgment from the Indian Claims Commission (ICC) was awarded to the descendants of the “Seminole Nation as it existed in Florida on September 18, 1823.” The Department of Interior (DOI) directed that 75% of the money be distributed to the Oklahoma Seminoles, 25% to the Florida Tribes and nothing to the Freedmen or Black Seminoles because in 1823 they were considered slaves. Congress did not pass an act allowing distribution of the funds until 1990 which by this time, with interest, had ballooned to $56 million.

In 1996, Sylvia Davis, a member of the Dosar Barkus band of the Seminole Nation of Oklahoma, was denied a $125 school clothing allowance from the funds.  The Dosar Barkus and Bruner bands are Seminoles of African descent and are the only branches of the tribes being denied access to these funds. The Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) and the SNO argue that in denying their claims, they are not discriminating against the Dosar Barkus band based on race, but they are correctly enforcing the requirement that the funds be distributed to descendants as defined in 1823. The Black Seminoles, also known as Estelusi, were not considered members of the nation until 1866 when the U.S. government decided to recognize them as such after the passage of the Thirteenth Amendment, and passage of treaties imposed upon the Seminoles and a number of other Indian nations who owned slaves. These treaties provided for the emancipation of any slaves owned by the tribes and allowed them to incorporate the “freedmen” into the nation “on an equal footing with the original members”

Obviously, there is much more at stake in the Davis case than $125 worth of school clothes. What is at stake is how tribes, federal agencies and other entities, based upon both an historical analysis and today’s public policy concerns over the distribution of resources, will choose to define or identify as Indian or Black, numerous people who have over the years identified themselves as Black Seminole Indians either through blood quantum, social construct, cultural affiliation, or proven descendancy from an identified ancestor.

This article will not draw definitive conclusions about how to label or categorize an obviously mixed race of people. I will not endorse one position at the peril of alienating the legitimacy of the opposite stance. I only propose to point out the claims of both the Black and Red Seminoles.

Part II of the article explores the historical backdrop which created this ostensibly Black and Indian race. It also looks at the numerous definitions of the word “Seminole.” Part III looks at the Davis case, and the rich heritage of the plaintiff, Sylvia Davis. This section will not employ an in-depth analysis of the procedural, constitutional or other substantive legal issues that plain people will never understand to be the reason why they win or lose a case. Because to plain people that is not what the real issues are. The real issue to plain people is the end result of litigation, not procedural questions or issues which ultimately sends them away from the courts empty handed.

Part IV looks at the reaction and the community outcry after Davis as tribal leaders and disenfranchised Black Seminoles express their agreement or discontent over the outcome of the cases.

Part V briefly explores how DNA and genetic tests may or may not bolster the claims of Black Seminoles, followed by a conclusion which unfortunately gives no solid solutions but instead is merely a few concluding remarks and observations…

Read the entire article here.

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