About the Film:
Black Cinema Series presents: BLACK BORDER WARRIORS
6:30 p.m. Friday, May 17
Made by local filmmakers
Discussion with Executive Producers Mikhail Gershteyn and Nate Brown, along with a Skype discussion with Director/Producer Joseph Hill will follow the screening.
“Black Border Warriors: The Seminole Negro Indian Scouts”, weaves a historical tapestry about a unique band of African-Americans, the Black Seminole. The documentary highlights the epic saga of freedom-seeking Black people beginning in the late 1700’s and early 1800’s, when small groups of fugitive slaves went into Spanish Florida, live near the Seminole Native-American tribe, co-mingle and ally with them as they fight a series of “Seminole Wars” against the United States military which is trying to preserve slavery and take Florida from Spain. These mixed blood African-Americans become the largest and longest lasting maroons in United States history. The Black Seminoles struggle to remain free, at a time when most of their brothers and sisters remain under the yoke of American chattel slavery, takes them from Florida to Oklahoma, then to Mexico for 20 years where they are desert trackers fighting hostile Indians for the Mexican government. In 1870, they are recruited to Texas by the U.S. Military to form a commando unit called the Seminole Negro Indian Scouts.
The hour- long documentary begins and ends in the tiny border town of Brackettville, Texas. This town was the site of old Fort Clark, the main base for the Seminole Negro Indian Scouts. Each year during the second weekend in September the descendants of the Scouts gather to celebrate their ancestors and their distinctive history during “Seminole Days”. This celebration draws Black Seminole from throughout the United States and Mexico (there are many Black Seminole “Muscogos” who live in Coahuila province across the Texas border). Also, part of that gathering are many non-Black Seminole including other Native-Americans from the area such as Lipan Apaches and Kickapoos, also authors, scholars, and others are drawn to the celebration of this unique group of African-Americans.