Seminole Freedmen - the translation!

Peace Corps Online: Directory: Sierra Leone: Special Report: Historian and Anthropologist Sierra Leone RPCV Joseph Opala: April 21, 2002: Headlines: COS - Sierra Leone: Black Studies: Anthropology: Native American Issues: Nathaniel Turner: The Seminoles did not exist when Europeans colonized the United States. The anthropologist Joseph Opala argues that they are not a Native American tribe at all, but "an Afro-Indian tribe" that coalesced in the mid-1700's when refugees from other tribes came together in the Florida wilderness with runaway slaves from the lower South. The origins of the tribe are suggested in the name Seminole, which has been translated as "runaway," "separatist" or "pioneer." : Freedmen - Freed Men!: Seminole Freedmen - the translation!

By Alfreda Doonkeen ( - on Tuesday, November 20, 2007 - 11:20 pm: Edit Post

While the Creek Confederacy occupied southeastern United Stated from as early as 1520's, the name Seminole/Seminolie/Seminolee/Ciminoli and many other derivations of the word Cimmaron is infact reflected as a Spanish translation for 'dark or dark colored'.
When the Spaniards enslaved many African people to the Americas and beyond, Cimmaron was the word used to identify the runaway...freedmen.
Cimmaron was only used to translate runaway to the English, German, Irish, Moravians and many other ethnic groups new to this continent.
Cimmaron is 'dark colored', that could be used for any person of color in the text of identifying a runaway Indian, runaway slave, runaway Peruvian, runaway Egyptian!
Seminole was just a runaway! This could haveused to identify any of hundreds of collected Indian in the Southeast and others. Today, when the word Seminole is used as a differentiated tribal person, that collectively absorbs many, many nations, tribes, towns, ethnic groups and more which makes up the tribe S-E-M-I-N-O-L-E.
Essentially, everyone from the Southeastern U.S. would be (of color of course), a Cimmaron or a Seminole!
They could be Creek, Cherokee, Choctaw, Porch Band Creek or any other number of tribes existing today. There is no person today that has the whole blood of a Seminole, therefore there is no such live tribe known as a "Black Seminole"
It was just a label!

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