List of chiefs of the Seminoles

This is a list of chiefs of the Seminole, which includes military and civic leaders of the Seminole people, who today are enrolled in the Miccosukee Tribe of Indians of Florida, Seminole Nation of Oklahoma, and Seminole Tribe of Florida

Leading chiefs (1750–1849)

There were four leading chiefs of the Seminole, a Native American tribe that formed in what was then Spanish Florida in present-day United States. They were leaders between the time the tribe organized in the mid-18th century until Micanopy and many Seminole were removed to Indian Territory in the 1830s following the Second Seminole War.

Miccosukee Tribe of Indians of Florida

The Miccosukee Tribe of Indians of Florida were recognized by the state of Florida in 1957, and gained federal recognition in 1962 as the Miccosukee Tribe of Indians of Florida.[1]

  • ca. late 18th c.–1819: Kinache, also Kinhagee (ca. 1750–ca. 1819), the last chief of the Creek of Miccosukee, Florida, who was defeated in battle in 1818 by US forces commanded by General Andrew Jackson. Later Kinhagee's people migrated south, maintaining their local village name Miccosukee as the name of the tribe.
  • 1962–1985: William Buffalo Tiger,[2] also Buffalo Tiger[3] or Heenehatche, (1920–2015), first chief of the Miccosukee Tribe of Indians of Florida, led initiatives for self-determination[4]
  • 1986–2011[5]: Billy Cypress, tribal chairman
  • 2011[5]–2015[6]: Colley Billie, tribal chairman[7], ousted in 2015[6]
  • 2015–2016: Roy Cypress Jr., interim tribal chairman[6]
  • 2015–present: Billy Cypress[3],[6]

Seminole Nation of Oklahoma

  • 1819–1849: Micanopy (ca. 1780–ca. 1849)[8]
  • 1849–: John Jumper (ca. 1820–1896), chief of Confederate faction of Seminole
  • 1882–1885: John Jumper, chief[8]
  • 1866–1881: John Chupco (ca. 1821–1881), town chief, leader of Union faction of Seminoles[8], Hvteyievike Band
  • 1885–1901: John F. Brown (1842–1919), governor[8], Tiger clan
  • 1905–1919: John F. Brown, governor[8]
  • 1922–1935: Alice Brown Davis (1852–1935), chief[8]
  • 1935–1936: Chili Fish, chief[8]
  • 1936–1946: George Jones, chief[8]
  • 1942–1944: Willie Haney, chief[8]
  • 1944–1946: Jeffie Brown, principal chief[8]
  • 1948–1952: George Harjo (1886–1952), chief, Tvsekayv Haco Band, Bear Clan[8]
  • 1952–1954: Marcy Cully, Nokuse (1910–1954), chief[8]
  • 1955–1950: Phillip Walker, chief[8]
  • 1960–1969: John A. Brown, principal chief[8]
  • 1969–1972: Terry Walker, chief[8]
  • 1972–1973: Floyd Harjo, chief[8]
  • 1973–1977: Edwin Tanyan, chief[8]
  • 1977–1978: Richmond Tiger, chief[8]
  • 1978–1981: Tom Palmer, chief[8]
  • 1979–1985: James Milam, principal chief[8]
  • 1985–1989: Edwin Tanyan, chief[8]
  • 1989–2001: Jerry Haney, principal chief[8]
  • 2003–2005 : Kenneth Edwards Chambers, principal chief[8]
  • 2005–2009: Enoch Kelly Haney, principal chief[8]
  • 2009–2017: Leonard M. Harjo, principal chief[8]
  • 2017[9]–Present: Greg P. Chilcoat, principal chief, Tusekia Harjo Band and Deer Clan[10]

Seminole Tribe of Florida


  1. Mahon, John K.; Brent R. Weisman (1996). "Florida's Seminole and Miccosukee Peoples". In Gannon, Michael (Ed.). The New History of Florida, pp. 202–04. University Press of Florida. ISBN 0-8130-1415-8.
  2. Tirado, Michelle (18 Jan 2015). "Buffalo Tiger, Miccosukee Tribe's First Chairman, Walks On". Indian Country Today. Retrieved 29 September 2019.
  3. "History". Miccosukee Tribe of Indians of Florida. Retrieved 29 September 2019.
  4. Harry A. Kersey Jr., "Buffalo Tiger, Bobo Dean, and the “Young Turks”: A Miccosukee Prelude to the 1975 Indian Self-Determination Act", American Indian Culture and Research Journal, Volume 29, Number 1 / 2005, ISSN 0161-6463 (Print)
  5. Gimlet Eye (10 July 2011). "What is up with the Miccosukee Tribe?". Eye on Miami. Retrieved 29 September 2019.
  6. Weaver, Jay (7 March 2016). "Ousted chairman Cypress regains leadership of Miccosukee Tribe". Miami Herlad. Retrieved 29 September 2019.
  7. Funcheon, Deirdra (12 Nov 2013). "Colley Billie Wins Re-Election as Miccosukee Chairman". New Times. Retrieved 29 September 2019.
  8. "Seminole Nation Leaders". Seminole Nation, I. T. 2 August 2015. Retrieved 29 September 2019.
  9. "The Seminole Nation of Oklahoma". Tribal Leaders Directory. Bureau of Indian Affairs. Retrieved 29 September 2019.
  10. "Executive". Seminole Nation of Oklahoma. Retrieved 29 September 2019.
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