Explore Tourism’s Role in Seminole Culture with New Traveling Exhibition
at the Collier County Museum in Naples
January 27 – April 18, 2017
Postcards serve as guidepost to the changes of early 20th century Florida history. Their simple, yet evocative imagery reveals the adaptive nature of the Seminole people and attest to the complex pressures and adjustments Seminoles endured to assert their identity.
The Seminoles, like many Native American groups, became integral to the tourist trade in the early 1900s. As their traditional lifestyle of hunting and canoeing faded away under Florida land development, tourism offered an alternate source of income. Many traditions, like patchwork and alligator wrestling, blossomed under the tourist trade. Over time, important Seminole leaders and entrepreneurs learned vital skills as shop owners. These skills remain relevant today as the modern Seminole Tribe of Florida navigates its ever increasing role in international business and as key voice in Indian Country.
This exhibition, courtesy of the Ah-Tah-Thi-Ki Museum, features pop up banners about the history, crafts, and significant figures of Seminole tourism, dating from the 1900s to the 1950s. There is an interactive true/false station and an oral history station that shares stories from seven tribal members.