Projects

The Seminole Negro Indian Scout Historical Society is dedicated to the accurate documentation, promotion and preservation of the history of the Seminole Negro Indian Scouts, their descendants, and the Black Seminoles.

Our multi-year projects will create an online resource repository for public documents, original research, discussion forums and webinars about the Black Seminole history.

We welcome all suggestions for potential research or projects that the Society should pursue, or for projects that descendants or allied researchers would like to develop for the Society. Please send us an email at info@seminolenegroindianscouts.org

IMG-1689.PNG

Photo: Scouts Fay July and William Shields,

circa 1895

Making Historical Documents Accessible

 

One of the best sources about the evolution of the Scouts is military correspondence between 1870 and 1914. Handwritten communiques between military leaders provide insight into the origins of the Scouts – who they were, how they lived, how the military unit evolved.

 

Our work is focused on making available previously untranscribed official documents to descendants and researchers, to deepen their understanding about how the community evolved. To that end, the Society will:

  • catalog approximately 1,200 pages of documents containing the correspondence and other papers pertaining to the Scouts.

  • transcribe and index selected handwritten letters from between 1870 and 1872 to provide a fuller examination of the agreements made between the Scouts and the US government and the work the Scouts performed during that time when they brought their families from Mexico back to Texas. 

 

In future years, the remainder of the essential Library of Congress and National Archives documents referring to the Scouts before their disbandment in 1914 will be transcribed and indexed as well.

Muster_Roll_Aug 16 1870_lightened_Roll_1

Conducting and Promoting Research

Providing context for the historical documents is key to understanding the evolution of the Scouts. Through original research, the Society will:

  • develop a sequential, transcribed annotated compilation of the origins of the Scouts through official documents.

  • encourage new research and activities - especially from descendants - that add to the knowledge about the Scouts

  • support opportunities to record, share  and preserve oral histories as told by the current generation of Elders. 

Cover3.png

Promoting Oral History and the Legacy Project

 

Oral History

Support opportunities to record, share  and preserve oral histories as told by the current generation of Elders. 

The Legacy Project

Over the upcoming year, the Historical Society will fully launch the Legacy Project to commemorate and celebrate Elders, deceased and living, by creating a forum for descendants to honor them. More details about this project will be provided over time. Community members are welcome to submit information for the Society to collect and use as this project unfolds. 

 We provided a sample of this work to celebrate William Gleaves "Dub" Warrior. 

Curating Resources

 

​Interest and research into the Scouts has been ongoing for the past 80+ years - primarily by non-Descendants. This work is invaluable but also creates an image and narrative of the Scouts that often times fits a particular time or research agenda.  Descendants, in partnership with other researchers will:  

  • compile of research about the Scouts and, over time, provide summaries of these works. This work is essential to ensure that the history of the Scouts is accurately documented and disseminated.

  • host webinars to discuss themes, issues and new research about the Scouts and community.

Dub_smiling_red.jpg
Old Book

Junior Research Fellows Program

 

The Seminole Negro Indian Scouts Historical Society is currently accepting applications for its 2021-22 Junior Research Fellows Program.  Fellows, who will be selected from among the younger generation of Scout descendants, will transcribe primary documents and oral history interviews in order to enrich the understanding of the Scouts and their community.

 

In its inaugural year, the Program will select two Fellows:

 

Mary Griner Nofi Research Fellow in Military History

The original letters to and from the Scouts detachment form the core of understanding the origins of the Scouts community.  This Research Fellow will continue the Society’s work of cataloging, transcribing, and indexing military documents pertaining to the Seminole Negro Indian Scouts between 1870-1914. The Society will provide the Fellow with selected letters of historical importance for transcription.  Selected transcriptions may be posted on the Society website to be accessed by the public.

 

William “Dub” Warrior Research Fellow in Oral History

Oral history provides first-hand knowledge of people, places, and events. Handed down from generation to generation, oral history complements written history with nuances not always found in books.  This Research Fellow will transcribe audio- and video- recorded interviews of elders. The Society will provide the Fellow with copies of the recordings and a template for transcribing and summarizing their contents. Selected transcriptions and/or summaries may be posted on the Society website to be accessed by the public.

Application Requirements

Applicants must be Scout descendants between the ages of 16-21 with an interest in the history of the Scouts.  The Society welcomes applications from all descendants regardless of residency.

 

Fellowship Award

Each Fellow will receive a stipend of $200 at the conclusion of the project.  Other benefits include acknowledgement of the Fellow’s work on the Society’s website and an opportunity to work with researchers who focus on the Scouts and the descendant community.

Click "Apply Here" to download the application.

Apply-Here-Button.png