Last modified: 2010-11-06 by rick wyatt
Keywords: miccosukee | florida | native american |
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image by Filip Van Laenen, 6 August 1996
map image by Peter Orenski based on input from Don Healy
Miccosukee - Florida
The Miccosukee are a south Florida Tribe closely related to their neighbors, the Seminole. They officially number under 150 and control some 75,000 acres (AID, 44). The Miccosukee reservation lies just west of Miami and borders the upper reaches of the Everglades, the huge swamp which served them for many years as a source of food, clothing, and shelter, and as a refuge from federal forces during the long Seminole Wars. The Miccosukee have never signed a peace treaty with the United States and never renounced their claims to much of southern Florida.
© Donald Healy 2008
The flag of the Miccosukee is one of the few well-known Native American tribal flags (FBUS, 257-259). It has four horizontal stripes, white over black over red over yellow. As with many other Native American tribal flags with four
elements, the symbolism of the four stripes points to the four major directions, white for south, black for north, red for west, and yellow for east. Many tribes also see these four colors as standing for the races of man. As such these colors are imbued with a magical essence in the eyes of many Native Americans. In the television special "The War Against the Indian" (Discovery Channel, 5 February 1995), actor Graham Greene, an Oneida, explained the four colors: yellow is for the Asian, with whom the seas are associated; black for the African who protects the air; white for the European, the keeper of the fire; and red is for the Indian who safeguards the earth.
The seal of the Miccosukee Nation, which does not appear on the flag, bears a chickee, the traditional dwelling of the Tribes of the Everglades. Both the Miccosukee flag and seal bear a strong similarity to those of their cousins and fellow Everglades dwellers, the Seminole [see Seminole of Florida].
© Donald Healy 2008
information provided by Peter Orenski, 15 January 2008