While there might be some mixed race descendants of the Uchee remaining in Walton County, they do not equate with any existing tribe or the Eastern Creek Nation. While most modern Uchee are members of the Muscogee (Creek) Nation of Oklahoma, many do not consider themselves Creek - but of a separate ethnic group.
Sec. 2 (10) in the community of Bruce, the Nation--
(A) beginning in the early 1860s, used and maintained the Antioch Cemetery, which remains in use by members of the Nation as of the date of enactment of this Act;
Other than the claim in this Bill, there is no historical documentation that labels this cemetery as originating with, belonging to, or being used by the Eastern Creek Nation as a burial ground. Inquiries about the origin have been unsuccessful. The common opinion is that it was started as a family cemetery.
The earliest identified graves in Antioch Cemetery date to the early 1880’s (Virginia Ward, 1882 -1882, 8c Row 7). Twenty-nine of the cemetery graves belong to the Ward family, which constitutes the largest number belonging to one family. The second largest number of identified graves belonging to one family is of the Bozeman family, with eight.
There are approximately 52 unknown graves in the cemetery. Rather than being in one vicinity or plot, they are scattered throughout the 14 rows of the cemetery among identified graves. This would mean the unlikelihood that they were all the earliest of graves or that they all belonged to older specific American Indian Creek burials.
The cemetery is land parcel number 12-1S-18-14000-001-0020. According to Walton County records, this property was donated to the Muscogee Nation of Florida on 7/10/2006. It is recorded in Sale Book 2727, Page 4198.
Antioch Cemetery, Bruce, Florida
Comments to be continued.