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Dade Battlefield Society is proud to be hosting the

2024 Convocation of Seminole War Historians!

April 26-28, 2024

In and around Bushnell, Florida

Everyone is welcome to join us for a weekend full of information, discovery and networking!

Adults $70             Students $35

Registration includes:

- Friday historic site tour
- Friday night reception and art exhibition with heavy hors d’oeuvres
- Saturday program with lunch
- Saturday evening program with dinner
- Sunday program with continental breakfast

You can register and pay online or mail the registration form with payment back to Dade Battlefield Society.

Click here to be taken to the registration page.

Click here to download the registration form: Convocation Registration Form.pdf

Schedule of Events

(Subject to change)

Friday, April 26, 2024


Chinsegut Hill Historic Site

24495 Chinsegut Hill Road

Brooksville, FL 34601

1 p.m. to 4 p.m.


Docent-led tours of the historic house will start at the top of each hour from 1 to 4 p.m.

From the Tampa Bay History Center website: "Located atop one of the highest points in Florida, Chinsegut Hill is home to a historic house in a 114-acre preserve. From prehistoric people to pioneer settlers, from an agrarian plantation before the Civil War to the emancipation of enslaved people, Chinsegut Hill has witnessed thousands of years of Florida’s history. During the 1920s and 1930s, new homeowners hosted progressive-era luminaries Thomas Edison, Helen Keller, Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings, and others before eventually donating the property to the government. Explore the diverse stories of Florida’s past in one unique location: Chinsegut Hill Historic Site."


5 p.m. to 8 p.m.

Join us for a reception and art exhibition at Chinsegut Hill Historic Site. Enjoy heavy hors d'oeuvres, beer and wine while you catch up with old friends, meet new ones, and peruse Seminole War era artwork.

Saturday, April 27, 2024


sumter County Fairgrounds

7620 State Rte 471

Bushnell, FL 33513

8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

Check back for more information about the great speakers we have lined up!

Civil War Officers who served in the Seminole Wars

John and Mary Lou Missall, renowned and award-winning authors and historians

Join us for a fascinating look at the lives of men who began their military careers fighting the Seminoles before fighting each other in the Civil War. Not just military leaders, many of these men were scientists, explorers, gifted artists, or dedicated surgeons, living a life that was often difficult, occasionally dangerous, and always interesting.

Archaeology’s Role in Understanding the Seminole Wars

Dr. Michelle Sivilich, Executive Director, Gulf Archaeology Research Institute

The Seminole Wars have long been studied by historians, however, in the grand scheme of things very little archaeology has been done. However, to truly understand this conflict, we need to understand more about these wars than what was written. Archaeology has the ability to provide a rich context that helps us understand not just these wars, but conflict between colonizers and the indigenous populations in general.

Who are the Seminoles: An Indigenous History & Perspective 

Pedro Zepeda, Seminole Artist and Historian

A look at Seminole history and concepts of self-identity through the viewpoint of a Seminole tribe citizen.

The Seminole Agency Post Office 1828-1837

Thomas Lera, Director, Florida Postal History Society

Thomas will talk about what he calls the "internet of the 1830s"- the Seminole Agency Post Office. Numerous articles, books, and podcasts have identified and discussed many participants in the Second Seminole War, including Gad Humphreys, Wiley Thompson, Major Francis L. Dade, and Osceola, but very little has been written about the Seminole Agency Post Office. This presentation will explore the history and sad ending of this small, but important, post office.

Mapping the Seminole Wars

Rodney Kite- Powell, Director of the Touchton Map Library at the Tampa Bay History Center

Mapping and surveying the Florida Territory in the years leading up to, and during, the Seminole Wars was demanding and dangerous, but from the standpoint of the territorial and federal governments, crucial to the goal of creating a successful American state. This presentation will trace the evolution and development of mapping and map-making from 1821 to 1858, covering Florida's territorial and early statehood periods as well as the entire span of the Seminole Wars, utilizing both civilian and military maps from the collection of the Tampa Bay History Center's Touchton Map library as well as other sources.

The Saga of the Historic Miccosukee Tribe: 1540 to 1818

Patsy West

The unbelievable saga of the historic Miccosukee people: From Lamar Temple Mound, Town Division, Allies with Great Britain, pawns on the border, and the reason for the running of the Transcontinental Treaty to the Pacific in 1819!!

Evening Program

dade battlefield historic state park

7200 Battlefield Parkway

Bushnell, FL 33513

6 p.m. to 9 p.m.

Relax with us as we enjoy food and music, networking, door prizes, a silent auction and more! We will show “This Land, These Men” and the “Frank Laumer Award video” on the big screen. A unique presentation will be given by Steve Rinck on JCB Koonce. We will end the evening with “Dade After Dark,” a candlelit tour of the park where letters, poetry, and book excerpts will be shared.

The Sturdy Endeavor of JCB Koonce

Steven Rinck, Living Historian and Author

A one-man theatrical production of the life of James Council Bryan Koonce, a long time Florida jurist who became the leading advocate for establishing and maintaining Dade's battlefield as a place for perpetual preservation.

Sunday, April 28, 2024

dade battlefield historic state park

7200 Battlefield Parkway

Bushnell, FL 33513

9 a.m. to 12 p.m.

We will round out the weekend by meeting back at Dade Battlefield Historic State Park for a unique battlefield tour, presented by talented and knowledgeable living historians. There will be opportunities to visit the museum in the Visitor Center and learn about how soldiers and Seminoles dressed during the Seminole Wars. The winner of the Frank Laumer Legacy Award will be announced, along with the next location of the biennial Convocation of Seminole War Historians.

After the Convocation ends, we encourage you to visit the Tampa Bay History Center, located at 801 Water Street in Tampa. Founded in 1989 by the Hillsborough County Board of County Commissioners, the Tampa Bay History Center opened its new 60,000 square-foot facility on Tampa’s Riverwalk in 2009. Accredited in 2015 by the American Alliance of Museums and a Smithsonian Affiliate museum since 2012, the History Center includes three floors of permanent and temporary exhibition galleries focusing on 12,000 years of Florida’s history.

Admission to the Tampa Bay History Center is not included with the Convocation registration fee but is well worth the stop on your way home. Learn more about the Tampa Bay History Center by visiting

Sponsorship Opportunities

Are you interested in helping a non-profit that is active in the community?

Do you love the Bushnell community and want to help it shine?

Do you want to introduce your company and brand to attendees coming from around the state, country and world? 

Then we have sponsorship opportunities for YOU! Click here for sponsorship information!

Founding Sponsor

In 2015, the idea of bringing (“convening”) people together, all of whom have interest in Florida’s Seminole wars, was born. Coming from throughout Florida and beyond and regardless of their backgrounds, such interest qualified them as “historians” who shared the common goal of increasing knowledge in, and enthusiasm for, the lessons taught by study of this critical period in America’s story.

Beginning at the site of the Second Seminole War’s end (St. Augustine) and thereafter the site of that war’s largest battle (Okeechobee) and later a reunion of the Florida and Oklahoma Seminoles (Jupiter), we are now meeting in Bushnell, where the war began so long ago. The variety of programming and opportunities for sharing with other like-minded enthusiasts is destined to make this Fourth Biennial Convocation of Seminole War Historians one that will long be remembered!

- Steve Rinck, Seminole Wars Foundation

Platinum Sponsor

Benefactor Sponsors





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Friend Sponsor

Thank you to our sponsors! We couldn’t host this event without your support!

Questions or need more information?

Please contact the planning committee at

Dade Battlefield Society is a non-profit corporation under Section  501 (c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code.

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