One of the earliest advocates for a day to honor Native Americans was Dr. Arthur Caswell Parker. A Cattaraugus Seneca Indian, historian, anthropologist, and author from New York state, Parker’s great-uncle was secretary to Ulysses S. Grant and the first Native to serve as Commissioner of Indian Affairs for the Department of the Interior. Dr. Parker founded several Indian rights organizations, including the National Congress of American Indians and others. Parker persuaded the Boy Scouts of America to set aside a day for “First Americans,” which they did from 1912 to 1915. In 1968, then Governor Ronald Reagan signed a resolution calling for a holiday called American Indian Day, to be held the Fourth Friday in September. In 1998, the California Assembly passed AB 1953, which made Native American Day an official state holiday, observed annually on the fourth Friday in September.
In recognition of National Indian Day, the Seminole Tribe of Florida will be closed on Friday, September 28, 2018. The Seminole Tribe of Florida will be open on Monday, October 1, 2018 at 8 AM.