National Geographic : 1969 Nov
property on both sides of a main north-south highway. But few commercial enterprises are owned by Seminoles; most of the revenue comes from land leased to developers. "We've tried it the other way," Eugene W. Barrett, the Government's Seminole Superin tendent, told me, "but this works better. Out side developers have the capital needed to build the businesses, and the experience to run them. Their lease payments bring a steady, assured income to the tribe-a larger income than the Seminoles would get if they had to build and run the businesses themselves." Joe Dan Osceola nodded in agreement, then spread out a map showing planned develop ments-shopping center, supermarkets, res taurants, motels, shops, and factories. "And each one calls for hiring and training Indians," Joe Dan said. "That will mean jobs and experience for us." "How about the $50,000,000 claim against the Government?" I asked, referring to the 1967 federal court ruling that the Seminoles 728 and their Oklahoma brothers are the legal owners of a huge part of Florida. Joe Dan smiled. "We aren't counting on it too much. We don't know how much it will really be, how it would be divided, or when it will be paid. We hope there will be plenty there are lots of ways we can use it." Alligator Alley Opens Hinterland Elsewhere than at Hollywood the Semi noles are on the move. At Brighton Reserva tion the Economic Development Agency will help build a house-trailer factory to employ 75 to 100 people. The tribe plans a marina and recreational area near Lake Okeechobee. On Big Cypress a large company is nego tiating for sand and gravel found there. This could bring in as much as $60,000 a year. With a road south to connect with Alligator Alley, the new cross-state turnpike, Big Cy press will be much more accessible, and the tribe is planning an area for hunters, with a trailer camp, restaurant, and other facilities.