Cacica refers to the female leader of a Timucua village, according to Father Pareja who developed a written language for the Timucua.
Cacique is term for males and I most likely am one; since I’m most likely member of the tribe, in my village. Children of my great-great grandmother are the only ones eligible. My Native American ancestor had a Spanish name which hints, she spawned from the Spanish mission system which operated in Florida. I can’t say for sure which tribe, but the Timucua seems the most likely and the Apalachee come in second.
In 1824, only three men and their families lived in the abandoned village; the Osteen brothers and old man Edwards. My ancestor’s surname was Osteen, but her Spanish given names were names a Spanish Indian or a Black woman would likely have and family features rule favor Injuns. Seminoles such as Billy Powell (Osceola) American sounding names. The Osteen name came from one of the two brothers because she was a daughter or the name was adopted for some unknown reason. Only her the Spanish, in her given names offers proof of tribe. Granddad hated his grandmother and her ancestry due to claims of abuse. If he was Seminole, he would likely know it, but there is reason why he didn’t know which Spanish Indian tribe–the Seminoles wiped them out.
Experts say my tribe is extinct, but I believe my great-great grandmother and her decedents make up the tribe; thus, she would have inherited the title of Cacica. When she died, one of her children would have taken the leadership role. My great grandfather would have been eligible, but I doubt she him due to his drinking problem and the fact he dumped kids on her after his wife died. Who takes the title is in question because I haven’t tracked down my more distant family; I only know where my aunts, uncles, and my first cousins live. Timucua leadership passed down by the maternal and in honor of my great-great grandma, women should keep the role.
Hernando De Soto ran into a cacica, if I remember correctly and Wikipedia names another, in the quote below which notes the numbers baptized:
Pareja achieved some success with the Saturiwa; in 1602 he had 500 Christians within his custodio. Nearly that number were confirmed during a visit in 1606 by Bishop Altamirano, including Cacica Maria and five of her subordinate caciques from the area.
The quote and other info can be found at this link https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Francisco_Pareja