Osceola: Seminole War Chief

Osceola: Seminole War Chief

by Mike Harris

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Overview

Osceola was born Billy Powell in 1804, in what was known at the time as a "Mississippi Territory". His mother, a Creek Indian, married a white trader, but left him early in Billy's life and took her son to 'Spanish Florida', where he grew up with a tribe of "free men" the Spanish called "Seminoli".
All the "Seminoli" were farmers, who lived in Northern and Central Florida, where they raised a variety of crops, herds of cattle and a large number of horses and ponies.
In the early 1800's, whenever 'Negro' slaves wanted to escape their life in the fields up North, more often than not, they headed South into
'Spanish Florida', where they knew the "Seminoli" would take them in and give them their freedom.
Consequently, with so many settlers in Georgia, Alabama, Tennessee and Carolina losing 'Negro' slaves, the U.S government tried to help the settlers by removing all the Indians from Florida, so they could resettle them in a new
'Indian Territory', the government set up West of the Mississippi River.
Early in Billy Powell's life, his name was changed to Osceola. He definitely did not think the U.S. government had any right to move all Indians out West, especially since, he believed, all the land, water and animals were given to the people by the Great Spirit!
Billy began organizing many of his friends and convinced them to join him in his fight against Army troops of the U.S. government.
Unfortunately, they also had to convince some of their own Seminole Chiefs!
When the government offered the Chiefs good money for their cattle, ponies and horses, plus free food and supplies, while they waited for schooners to take them out West, many of the Chiefs wanted to accept the governments offer, which Osceola opposed!!
When Osceola and his loyal braves began winning battles against the U.S. Army, the Army shipped thousands of armed soldiers with cannon batteries into Florida, to stop the 'up-start' renegade Osceola once and for all!
That's when Osceola decided to lead his people to South Florida and convinced them to move into the Everglades an Big Cypress Swamp, where the U.S. Army was unable to follow them or maneuver their horses, troops and cannons.
Many Seminole's definitely didn't want to move into a swamp with snakes and alligators, since they had lived their whole as farmers on solid ground.
But when Osceola was able to prove to them the Army could not reach them in the swamp, many decided to stay, where they live to this day, the only Indian Tribe never to surrender to the U.S. government!
How Billy Powell became Osceola, how he led his people against the U.S. government and how he became a famous Seminole War Chief is what this story is all about.
Only by deceit and trickery was Osceola, very sick at the time, lured to Fort Marian located close to St. Augustine and captured by Army troops, before being transferred to Fort Moultrie outside of Charleston, South Carolina.
While in custody a very famous artist painted Osceola's picture, which was wildly distributed internationally, which enabled Osceola to become the most famous Indian War Chief in the U.S.
When Osceola died in prison, his head was removed and kept as a souvenir for years, until it was donated to a museum and lost in a fire.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781985346598
Publisher: CreateSpace Publishing
Publication date: 05/18/2018
Pages: 206
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.44(d)

About the Author

Mike Harris is an accomplished writer, explorer and film producer who has led major expeditions around the world.
On Mike's first expedition he led a group of divers to Bikini Atoll in the Marshall Islands where they dove on American, German and Japanese warships that were sunk by atom bomb testing after WWII. His film "DEADLY FATHOMS" featured Rod Serling and won a "Silver Medal" at the Atlanta International Film Festival.
On Mike's second expedition he took a group of Biblical sholars to Mt. Ararat in Turkey. Mike produced "EXPEDITION TO NOAH'S ARK" which featured Hollywood star Joseph Cotten. Mike's next expedition took him to Mexico where he produced "PANCHO VILLA'S TREASURE" which featured film and TV personality Cesar Romero.
Mike then obtained "15-minutes of fame" when he led the first expeditions to search for the Titanic in the North Atlantic. His film "SEARCH FOR THE TITANIC" featured legendary actor Orson Welles. He then produced "RETURN TO THE TITANIC" which featured Western star, James 'The Virginian' Drury, who joined Mike on his historic expedition.
Mike has conducted extensive research on what happened to Amelia Earhart when she disappeared in 1937 and the voyages of China's marine explorer, Admiral Zheng He.
Mike is a member of "The Explorer's Club" of New York and a Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society in London.

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