ing deer and other game. Jesup got fooled the worst.
'uring his Àrst months in command, 6eminole leaders
agreed to attend a peace conference. By the end of the talks,
they had Jesup so convinced that their people would exit
Florida, he publicly announced the war was won. Most of
his troops were allowed to go home to their respective states.
Settlers joyously left the stockades and returned to their
As promised, much of the 6eminole 1ation arrived at a
growing encampment near a makeshift harbor in Tampa
Bay, but the ,ndians kept delaying their departure. They all
needed to go out West together, they eplained. ,t would take
a while to gather all their people. They couldn’t leave stragglers,
like Osceola, behind.
FOOLED BY OSCEOLA
2sceola was the Àercest, most determined ³ and reputedly,
the most handsome — opponent of removal. The war
wouldn’t be won, if Osceola stayed behind with a band of followers.
So, Jesup patiently bided his time. Finally, one night
Osceola showed up at the encampment, but in the morning
everybody was gone. 9anished. The whole 6eminole 1ation
— men, women, and children — melted back into the wilderness.
Worst of all, enough supplies were hauled away to keep
the war going strong.
Well, you can imagine how badly Jesup must have felt
when he saw all the empty chickees. Worse still, he had to
endure some really bad press. Settlers weren’t happy about
having to scramble back to those miserable stockades. The
army had to be reassembled posthaste. And back home in
.entucky, -esup·s wife, Ann, got sick of reading all the politi-
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