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7. Mocama Networks

“Timucuan Transportation” NPS display

The Mocamas used coastal waterways and the St. Johns River as their main highways. Traveling by tico (canoe) was much quicker than by foot. Mocamas built and cleared sand and dirt paths leading to these water highways. They left canoes along the banks for those who needed them. They used canoes for daily activities like traveling to areas to collect food. Mocamas also traveled far and wide to visit with other Indigenous nations, to trade for resources not available in their own national territory, to visit important religious sites, and to engage in both peace and war. Through waterways, Mocamas maintained their connections to one another but also connected to a much larger world of Indigenous peoples.

Mocamas were expert canoe designers and builders. They made canoes mostly out of pine but sometimes out of cypress. Long, shallow canoes were ideal for speed and light loads, whiles ones with higher sides were better for transporting heavy cargoe. To fashion a canoe, Mocamas hollowed a pine or cypress tree trunk first by using fire to burn the wood and then chipping away to shape it. They repeated this process until the canoe was done.

To learn more from a Seminole artisan named Pedro Zepeda about Seminole canoe building watch this video.


"Timucuan Canoe" NPS Display A photo of the "Timucuan Canoe" NPS display located in the "Timucuan Village" NPS display. Source: Center for Instructional and Research Technology, University of North Florida, and National Park Service Creator: Michael Boyles, National Park Service Fort Caroline National Memorial
"Timucuan Transportation" NPS Wayside Display A still image of the "Timucuan Transportation" NPS wayside display next to the "Timucuan Canoe" recreation located within the "Timucuan Village" display. Source: National Park Service Creator: National Park Service Fort Caroline National Memorial
Indigenous Fort Caroline Tour Map A map displaying the physical locations associated with each tour spot. You are now at Spot 7 in front of the “Timucuan Transportation” NPS display inside of the "Timucuan Village" NPS recreation space. Our path takes you from the Main Parking Lot, past the Timucuan Preserve Visitor Center, overlooking the river, along the Fort Caroline Memorial Trail, to the actual replica of Fort Caroline. Source: Center for Instructional and Research Technology (CIRT), University of North Florida, and National Park Service Creator: Michael Boyles and NPS Fort Caroline National Memorial Date: 2023



Indigenous Florida, “7. Mocama Networks,” Indigenous Florida, accessed June 9, 2023,