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Q&A: ‘Siggy’ Jumper’s new book commemorates Jupiter gathering

From left to right are Gerald McKane, Chief of the Fushutche Band of the Seminole Nation of Oklahoma; Rex Hailey, Seminole Nation of Oklahoma honor guard commander; Jumper (Chiricahua Apache); Pedro Zepeda, Seminole Tribe; Naples Liaison Brian Zepeda, Seminole Tribe; Lewis Johnson, Principal Chief of the Seminole Nation of Oklahoma; Jake Tiger, cultural technician for the Seminole Nation of Oklahoma; and Phillip Coon, Muscogee (Creek) Nation. The group met at the Jupiter Community Center in Jupiter on April 2, 2022. (Courtesy Siggy Second-Jumper)

Sigfried “Siggy” R. Second-Jumper is a Chiricahua Apache descendent, but grew up in Miami and has had relationships with members of the Seminole Tribe and Miccosukee Tribe since he was a youth.

He’s written three books – all which contain histories and stories of learning more about his own Chiricahua Apache heritage (“Second Jumper: Searching for his Bloodline” and “Apache Trails of Tears”) – as well as accounts of his life in Florida and interactions with members of the Seminole and Miccosukee tribes.

Jumper’s latest book, “Seminole Trail of Tears,” commemorates a spring 2022 gathering that took place at the Loxahatchee River Battlefield Park with members of the Seminole Nation of Oklahoma and members of the Seminole and Miccosukee tribes, among others. Jumper, 63, served as an ambassador for the event, which is thought to be the first time members of the Seminole Nation, at least formally, had returned to the site of the 1838 Battle of Loxahatchee – the last standing battle of the Second Seminole War. Some Seminoles would be forced to leave Florida for Oklahoma, others would stay in the area for many years, and others moved further south into the Everglades.

“[The book] is filled with emotions and revelations that were carefully gathered with consent and preserved by me, based on my firsthand involvement and participation [in the event],” Jumper said.

The Tribune asked Jumper more about his latest book and the event. Answers have been edited for length and clarity.

Tribune: The Jupiter gathering was important to you?

Jumper: I was well aware that history was being made when I greeted a delegation of Oklahoma Seminoles at the Seminole Inn in Indiantown. Looking back, I believe that the preparation for such a historical moment started half a century earlier when Buffalo Tiger (Miccosukee) began casting the man that I am today. I promised Buffalo that I was going to dedicate my life to gathering and preserving our stories.

Tribune: Your role as an ambassador seems to have come naturally.

Jumper: It happened while giving a tour of my exhibit at the Ah-Tah-Thi-Ki Museum to a half dozen members of the Loxahatchee Battlefield Preservationists – a nonprofit that takes part in various annual events [and] reenactments at the Loxahatchee Battlefield Park. Their events consist of commemorating historical conflicts that took place in 1838 at the Loxahatchee Battlefield during the Second Seminole War.  

Members asked if it was possible for me to lend a helping hand with their fragile relationship with the Florida Seminoles. I met with the group at the Loxahatchee Battlefield Park, where I learned that that they had been misled by a group of non-Seminoles. It was during that meeting that the Loxahatchee Battlefield Preservationists also expressed a lifelong desire to reunite the Seminoles; those whose ancestors were exiled to Oklahoma with those whose ancestors remained unconquered in Florida.

Tribune: Was the event was a success?

Jumper: The return of the Oklahoma Seminoles after a 184-year absence was no small feat, and I felt privileged to be part of it. Details of the emotions and the involvement pertaining to the Miccosukees and Florida Seminoles that came to greet their kin are revealed in detail and preserved in my book.

Tribune: You see connections between your roots and those of other Natives?

Jumper: Our problems are identical; we are all losing our culture and language. Without the language, we lose our sovereignty and our land. In my opinion, the Seminoles have a lot to gain by maintaining and reinforcing the pillars of that bridge that was established in April of 2022. It can lead to the strengthening of their language and the restoration of their lost clans.

I want to express to my Florida Seminole friends my humble gratitude for all the privileges and memorable moments I’ve experienced and shared with them in the past 50 years. I also would like to send a message to our Native youth: stay traditional and make a hard effort to be an active speaker of your Native language. Ask the elders for stories. Educate yourself in your culture so that you can ask them the right questions.

To contact Jumper or order one of his books, email

Jumper’s latest book is “Seminole Trail of Tears.” (Courtesy Siggy Second-Jumper)
Siggy Second-Jumper (Photo Lisette Morales McCabe)
Damon Scott
Damon is a multimedia journalist for the Seminole Tribune. He has previously been an editor and reporter for digital and print media in Florida and his home state of New Mexico. Send him an email at