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National Audubon Day program to include Seminole perspective, film about plume wars

Director Nicholas Ray, left, with Cory Osceola, from the Seminole Tribe, during the filming of the 1958 movie “Wind Across the Everglades.” (State Archives of Florida/Steinmetz)

Everett Osceola will introduce the classic film “Wind Across the Everglades” during the National Audubon Day commemoration by the Fort Lauderdale Film Festival and Stranahan House on April 26.

The 1958 film, set in the early 20th century, depicts the conflict between a game warden and bird poachers in the Everglades. The plume wars in the Everglades was a time when birds were commonly killed for their feathers from the late 1800s to early 1900s. The showy plumes of wading birds such as egrets, herons and spoonbills were popular adornments to lady’s hats during the Victorian era. The birds were hunted to near extinction.

The film is loosely based on the life of Guy Bradley, an early game warden in the Everglades.

Cory Osceola, who was a leader in the Seminole Tribe, appears in the film.

Prior to the film screening, Everett Osceola will give a presentation about the historic role the Seminoles played during the plume wars. The tribe’s Culture department will provide traditional food for the event.

Stranahan House director of education Jon Axler will discuss the role the Stranahan family had in fighting the trade. After the film, Dough Young, COO of the South Florida Audubon Society, will give a presentation about the ongoing efforts of the society.

The program will begin at 6 p.m. and the film will be shown at 7 p.m. at the Savor Cinema, located at 503 SE 6th St. in Fort Lauderdale.

Admission is free to Stranahan House and Fort Lauderdale Film Festival members. General admission is $8.

Beverly Bidney
Beverly Bidney has been a reporter and photographer for The Seminole Tribune since 2012. During her career, she has worked at various newspapers around the country including the Muskogee Phoenix in Oklahoma, Miami Herald, Associated Press, USA Today and other publications nationwide. A NAJA award winning journalist, she has covered just about everything over the years and is an advocate for a strong press. Contact her at