Rebellion Key Events: 1816 - 1850     
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spacer Highlights & Features > Key events

Twelve key events in the history of the Black Seminoles through 1882. Click on the pictures to see trail segments with more detail. Note: Some of the trail segments have different titles than the events listed here, but they cover the same material.

Date Event Trail segment
1816 Destruction of the Negro Fort
In his first assault on the freedom of the Black Seminoles, General Andrew Jackson ordered the destruction of a fort that had become a beacon for runaway slaves. (12 story panels)
Negro Fort
1834-35 Osceola emerges
In negotiations over western removal, Osceola emerged as the most outspoken militant, galvanizing the alliance of Indians and blacks. (12 story panels)
Osceola rejects the treaty
1835 "Dade's Massacre"
In one of the most successful Indian attacks in U.S. history, black warriors especially rattled the Americans as maroons and runaways took up arms against the oppressor. (6 story panels)
1837 John Horse escapes
After being captured with Osceola, John Horse and seventeen Indian allies escaped from the strongest prison in Florida, renewing the war. (11 story panels)
Gates of Fort Marion, St. Augustine
1838 Battle of Lake Okeechobee
In the largest battle of the war, 1,000 U.S. soldiers met the Seminole allies at Lake Okeechobee where the Indians fought for land and the blacks for freedom. (5 story panels)
Zachary Taylor
1844-45 Trips to Washington
In two trips to Washington, John Horse appealed to General Jesup to honor the promises that ended the Florida rebellion, while Jesup dealt with a divided nation. (17 story panels)
Washington D.C.
1848 Attorney General's decision
President Polk installed a temporary Attorney General to rule on the status of the Black Seminoles, ushering in one of the darkest periods in their history. (6 story panels)
Washington D.C.
1849-50 Flight for Freedom
Facing the prospect of slavery, the Black Seminoles and John Horse joined their Indian ally, Coacoochee, to bolt for Mexico, where freedom was over the border. (14 story panels)
Comanche camp
1849-56 Filibusters Invade Mexico
As proslavery expansionists sought new territories for the South's peculiar institution, Northern Mexico and the Black Seminoles fell within their sights. (3 story panels)
Narciso Lopez captured
1858 Maroons Win Renown in Exile
The Black Seminoles won perhaps their greatest, albeit brief, renown with publication of Joshua Reed Giddings' antislavery history, The Exiles of Florida. (3 story panels)
Joshua Reed Giddings
1870 Scouts Defend Texas
When U.S. officers sought help defending Texas from border tribes, they turned to the Black Seminoles as scouts. (10 story panels)
At the Ford - Apache
1882 Homeland
With his community's settlement in Nacimiento under threat, John Horse made the final journey in his lifelong, epic quest to secure a free homeland. (4 story panels)
Rio Sabinas
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