One of the most persistent problems confronting historians dealing with the Seminole Indians in Florida during the late-nineteenth century has been a paucity of reliable population data. In the first four decades of the modern tribal era, the years following cessation of the Third Seminole War in 1858, there was only one attempt at a comprehensive account of Florida Seminoles. That was a survey conducted in the winter of 1880-1881 by Clay MacCauley for the Smithsonian Institution, which yielded what has become the generally accepted base line population figures. He found 208 Seminoles residing in the state, the unhappy remnant of a tribe that had once numbered over 5,000 before the wars and removal to the West.
Kersey, Jr., Harry A.
"Florida Seminoles and the Census of 1900,"
Florida Historical Quarterly: Vol. 60:
2, Article 3.
Available at: https://stars.library.ucf.edu/fhq/vol60/iss2/3