The following content is created in consultation with the Miccosukee Tribe of Indians of Florida. It does not reflect the work or opinions of NBC Miami’s editorial staff. To learn more visit Miccosukee.com.
Did you know that the Miccosukee Tribe of Indians of Florida have a proud history that predates Columbus?
Originally part of the Creek Nation in present-day Georgia, a small group of Miccosukee Indians migrated to Florida during the Indian Wars of the 1800s. Rather than surrender and be forced to relocate West of the Mississippi (as was the case for most Native Americans), these 100 Miccosukee hid out in the Everglades, living in “hammock style” camps to both elude capture and adapt to their new “river grass” living environment.
Over the centuries, the Miccosukee would modernize while also proving savvy diplomats, brokering treaties with Spanish, French and English crowns. By 1962, the tribe had legally established itself as a sovereign, domestic dependent nation within the United States thanks to the bold leadership of Buffalo Tiger, first Chairman of the Miccosukee’s modern government.
Today, the Miccosukee are located in the Everglades of South Florida, operate hotels and casinos in Miami, and have a business council that conducts affairs on the world stage. They also remain a distinct, government-to-government political entity within the United States.
As a tribute to their rich history, the Miccosukee recently re-inaugurated their Miami-based Embassy. Located above the iconic limestone caverns that once provided refuge on the banks of the Miami River (an important point of commerce and social life in Miccosukee culture), the renovated Embassy is composed of soaring glass, towering wood ceilings, and elegant stone walls. By combining history with bold, modern architecture and design, the building is a beautiful symbol of the diplomacy the Miccosukee have engaged in for centuries.
“Establishment of this Embassy will foster Miccosukee sovereignty and our government-to-government relationships throughout the world,” says Billy Cypress, Chairman of the Miccosukee General Council.
To learn more about the Miccosukee Tribe of Indians of Florida, visit Miccosukee.com.