THE BOTANICAL JOURNAL OF G. W. CLINTON
Rendered by P. M. Eckel
Editor, The Clinton Papers
Buffalo Museum of Science
Missouri Botanical Garden, Res Botanica
www.mobot.org/plantscience/ResBot/
June 11, 2003

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THE BOTANICAL JOURNAL OF G. W. CLINTON – June 1865

[1865]     June 1. Took 9 A.M. train to Lewiston. Walked back, in the track, to the rocky grove.  Collected there Turitis stricta, in capital condition, noticed a Cornus circinata, & took a specimen for Dr. Wright. Also Avena striata, the Rubus noticed yesterday, which seems quite common (R. canadensis), took a Climacium Americanum (I want to find, hereabouts, the one Peck writes is rare) Selaginella rupestris.

 

Ascended the hill to the abandoned track of a railroad, & followed that as far as St. Xavier College where it crosses a ravine, with a spring running into it, under a cliff, found beautiful specimen of Arabis hirsuta, and, on the wet rock, bulging masses of a nice dark green moss, with no sign of fructification: afterward noticed the same on the wet precipice below the American Staircase. 

 

In the old field below St. Xavier's College took one specmen of Vicia americana? (it looked green) and Antennaria plantaginifolia. At the College, took the highway and left it for the Whirlpool Woods, at the 2nd or 3rd line of fence below Deveaux College.  Near the bank,  going along, noticed Avena striata & a very few puny plants of Arabis hirsuta. Also took two species of a broad, short leaved Carex, quite small, must look at it.  

 

In the yard of the house at the Whirlpool, Polygala Senega, abundant & fine, just flowering. 

 

Carex eburnea is common all along the bank of the River, in the woods.

 

On the bank, above the house, Senecio aurea & balsamita, Sisyrinchium anceps, & divers other things in flower. Met Mr. Wiley again. Collected Oryzopsis asperifolia, well in seed. 

 

Walked in to Niagara City & up to the Falls, in the Railroad. On the outside of the cliff, utterly inaccessible, seen in one instance, gloriously in flower, Lonicera parviflora, v. douglasii. 

 

Descended the American Staircase to the top of the talus, & walked down on it a little way, & found, in the wet rock, a pretty, small fruited moss, and a small (Rebullia) Marchantia which, I think, cannot be M. polymorpha=  Preissia commutata. 

 

Went on Goat Island, up the American side, to the rocky flat by the River.  Took, from a stump, a small lead colored fungus in the gills, & a larger one, perhaps the [same] and one or two mosses collected before.  On

the naked pasture on the head of the Island, an umbellifer, probably [?@ no reference Carum carui].  Met Sam Bumck & wife, Mr. Haywood & wife, & a third couple, who have been picnicing, & they took me to Luna Island & we there finished their lemonade, cake & sandwiches. Home by 6*10' train. 

 

[It is unclear whether it is Climacium dendroides or Selaginella rupestris that is rare, according to Peck.] The 'rocky grove' at Lewiston may be Scoville's Knoll or the forest growing on the talus at the base of the Escarpment, also known locally as the 'hill'. The 'Wright' is Dr. A. R. Wright of Buffalo (see miscellaneous index). The passage describing the stream may be what is now called Bloody Run, now covered over, its outlet blocked where it once emptied, or may have, into the Devil's Hole cove. As described in the June 10 entry below, the ravine was a 'deep cutting', and filled in at least from the time the Robert Moses Parkway was built in the 1950's. The moss described here and elsewhere, in 'bulging masses' is either Hymenostylium recurvirostrum or Didymodon tophaceus. The 'old field below St. Xavier's' is where the forebay of the Robert Moses Power plant occurs.]

 

[1865]     June 3. After breakfast, down Seneca St. to Erie Railroad, & on that, to the first wood on the left, on the way, took a common moss, Marchantia polymorpha, & 2 specimens of what, probably, is Rubus villosus v.  humifusus. In the wood found a delicate, stalked fungus without gills, growing in dead leaves, in wet places, color yellow, (In the evening, mailed a specimen to Mr. Bennett. Collected 2 or 3 mosses, besides Sphagnum, and found 1 specimen of Oxalis acetosella. I had supposed this wood was within 1/2 mile of Sulphur Spring, but, after passing through it, some fields, & another wood, & then fields, I came out in what proved to be William St. (extended). Walked back, on that road, about 2 miles, & took the first cross road to the left, which, in about 3 quarters of a mile, brought me into the road running up the left bank of the creek. Crossed the Canal & walked down it.  The Big Polygonatum, with opposite leaves, not yet in flower, ought to be examined. It seems different from the common, big one, the giganteum of Dietrich, according to Day [Gray writes = giganteum].  Silene inflata far from flowering. Crossing to the Creek, found a clump of Prunus Virginiana, with monstrous fruit, like the P. Americana of Grand Island, took specimen, and, in the evening, mailed one to Gray. In the meadow, took specimen of Thaspium, which seems to differ from what we have called T.  barbinode. Collected some willows on the Creek. Crossed on the Dam to Sulphur Spring House. On my way to the Plank Road in Seneca St. stopped & collected some Fedia fagopyrum. Home, by Seneca St. 

 

[See June 12 below. The Canal is the Hydraulic Canal. The Creek is the Scajaquada.]

 

 

[1865]     Sunday, June 4. Took a specimen of a large flowered Stellaria from Coleman's, and, from the triangle in front of Austin's, Niagara Square, a very downy leaf of a maple, must get more with the fruit. 

 

[Perhaps Coleman Robinson is the person referred to; Austin is Stephen G. Austin.]

 

 

[1865]     Monday, 5th. P.M. In the Grove, south side of the Creek, find the Carex platyphylla. Through the fields to Dr. White's Grove. Took some Scirpus Clintonii, not mature enough. In the grove & fields thereabout Specularia abundant, the non opening flower with formed seed, no sign of a patent flower. Took specimen of Polygonatum giganteum, the filaments are smooth & naked, but seem, to me, to be inserted far below the middle of the perianth. I entered, on the S. side of the Creek, at the bridge, and walked down to Swartz's ravine, hugging the bank, on or near the foot of the bank, in the meadow or grass, took two immature specimens of a Carex, which answers the description of C. pallescens very well. (Wilhelm Arlt, this or J., fell from Schanzlin's back stoop & broke his skull so that he died). 

 

[See misc index: a William Arlt.]

 

[1865]     June 6th. Tuesday. Having, yesterday, left my knife in a stone quarry in the field on the edge of Dr. White's grove, walked out after, & found it, this A.M., and, in returning to the McAdam road, found, near the southeasterly corner of the field, an abundance of Geranium Carolinianum just coming into flower. 

 

[1865]     June 7th. Wednesday. To Limestone ridge. From the Liberty Pole in Buffalo to the Plank road tollgate at the ridge is 5 miles. Into the woods at Smoke's Creek, gathered Viola striata, a little, Poa sylvestris & Poa alsodes, Carex pubescens, and some (scarcely ripe) seed of Collinsia verna (mailed it to Gray) and some mosses. Walked up to the next wood & explored both sides, nil, but a small fungus which I must send to Mr. Bennett. Thence back on the railroad to the Limestone Ridge Road, &, by it, to the Turnpike, & down that to Mr. Maxwell's, called, gave me good milk &c., walked with him, on his land, to the Lake Shore, & took a willow. Home!

 

Received from Prof. Tuckermann (at Prof. Gray's request) a package of duplicate Carices from Dr. Boott's herbarium.

 

[1865]     June 8. Thursday. Took 6 A.M. train to Tonawanda, & thence, 7* train to Akron. Walked into the village, the Octagon closed. Through the fields to the Ledge [= Counterfeiter's Ledge], collected 2 or 3 mosses, the little Cerastium nutans, Draba arabisans. Carex platyphylla. Walked on to, or nearly to, the Cranberry swamp, my courage failed, back to the cross‑road and, by it, to the Richville Station, thence along the railroad to Akron station, in the wooded hill near which I got 1 or 2 specimens of what I suppose to be C. laxiflora v. patulifolia, but the leaves seem to be 3 ribbed. Home! 

 

On the top of the cliff, soon after ascending it, saw, growing probably for the first time in my life, the Conopholis. 5 specimens on the root of a beech, only one in flower, took that & another, & marked the place. 

 

On the plains, crossing to the road to Indian Council House, found Erigeron bellidifolium, very hairy, & with runners or stolons. Took some.

 

Near the foot of the talus of the cliff, found one specimen of Aspidium acrostichoides v. incisum, not in fruit.

 

[1865]     June 10. Saturday. By 9 A. M. train to Suspension Bridge, walked down to R. R.  nearly to opposite the Devil's Hole, & then, in a deep rock cutting, collected some mosses. Rosa blanda in flower. Descended, at the Devil's Hole. Collected some mosses & Carex platyphylla & C. plantaginea, the latter over ripe. Walked along the bank to the Whirlpool, & along the chasm above, through Niagara City, & along the R. R. to the American Ferry Staircase. Went half way down, & walked under the cliff to the American Fall, & down to the front of the Staircase, nil, except below the staircase, Carex Oederii frolicksome as usual, & what if it be C.  granularis, looks green to me. Up the staircase to the top of the talus, & down along the top of it, where springs trickle down.  Collected more Pressia commutata & also, not in fruit, a green leaved plant growing on the rock in the water (Fissidens grandifrons). Over to Goat Island and collected Barbula tortuosa var. Home by the 6* train. The day has been very pleasant. 

 

[For mosses, see the same station by St. Xavier College June 1 above.

 

[1865]     June 11, Sunday. P.M. rode out to the Grove, and, on the left side of the [Scajaquada] Creek, on the hill side beyond the orchard, collected Carex pallescens, 56 specimens. Went up the Williamsville Road and turned, this side of the tollgate, into the grove, took specimens of Carex sparganioides, & laxiflora v. patulifolia. In the field beyond, noticed Carex pallescens again, but in the plain, to the little wood east of the quarries, could not find Scirpus Clintonii, back to the bushy field, or copse, and found it almost gone, but got a number of (116) specimens. The Specularia seems to love ploughed ground. For the first time in my life, if my memory does not deceive me, saw a just opening flower bud of it. 

 

[Note the number of specimens gathered for exchange.]

 

 

[1865]     June 12. Walked out on William's Street, about 40 rods beyond crossing of N.Y. & E. R. R., & then turned to the right, went through a recently felled wood to a wood, &, through groves & fields, came out opposite Sulphur Spring House. Carex pedunculata gone. The big, opposite leaved, Polygonatum, not yet in flower along the Hydraulic Canal, but took 2 specimens, intending one for Gray, presume he will call it giganteum, though its aspect be different. Collected some Carices & a moss or two.  Down the Canal & Creek to Seneca St., & home by Swan. Collected Silene inflata. 

 

[See June 3 above.]

 

[1865]     June 15. Caledonia by 5* A.M. Train. Breakfasted at Shaw's & walked down to Seth Green's. Explored the wood & a small tamarack swamp on the opposite side of the creek. Took the common Eleocharis of the stream, Carex flava, one caespitosa & some mosses, an Eriophorum, gone out already, Cypripedium spectabile. Went on the streams with Mr. G., in his boat, & collected some of a small crustacean, which he called a fresh water shrimp.  It is abundant in the Chara. Found it, or something like it, in the Riccia fluitans which I collected last year, in Burnt Ship [= Creek, Grand Island].  Dined at Mr. G's. Explored the swamp up to the village, nothing new. The Lonicera oblongifolia all in young berry. A little Linnaea in flower. Could not find the Myrica cerifera, it was raining like fury, good for the country! Got home after 8 P.M. 

 

[Tamarack, also called the American or Black Larch, is Larix americana, Michx., acccording to Gray (1862).]

 

 

[1865]     June 16. Friday. Late in the afternoon, went to White's grove, & collected some Scirpus planifolius. Also some of the Poa of the grove, probably pratensis, but the branches of the panicle in 2s & 3s, generally. In the open field. Geranium Carolinianum had gone to seed, & the Specularia in blossom, was abundant.

 

[1865]     June 17. Saturday. By 6* A. M. train to Tonawanda. Explored wood &c., by the Lockport RR, 2 or 3 mosses & a Pyrola, whether chloranthus or a var. of rotundifolia? it grew among the pines (The stem is angular, almost quadrangular, and, at least in some instances, twisted). By the 9* train to the Falls, & crossed by the Ferry & called on John T. Bush, after exploring from the Ferry  up, under the cliff, for mosses. On his grounds saw a brilliant, beelike, but, apparantly stingless insect, gregarious, [... illegible with a query by Clinton], entering & issuing from holes in the soil (caught one & brought it home in my box). Returned to American side, after visiting Table Rock, Goat Island, walked up to Sawmill on the River ‑ Home! 

 

[Table Rock is usually considered to be at the brink of the British, Canadian or Horseshoe Falls (all names apply to the same feature.]

 

[1865]     June 18. Walking in Forest Lawn Cemetery, observed the big‑leaved Chenopodium album? on some manure, or muck, on the right of the road at the foot of the hill, a little below the spring.

 

[1865]     June 19. Walked out to Smoke's Creek, to collect seeds of Collinsia, found it all shed, picked up a few from the ground. The Poa, on the edge of the Creek, the upper leaves rough, & the edges. Walked up the Creek to the fence, &, in crossing below it, found Aspidium acrostichoides with leaves serrate, but not cut enough for v. incisum, also with leaves waved. Also Aspidium crist'm v. major too young yet. On the edge of the Creek, a tuft of Cystopteris fragilis. Found a little fungus, & took it for Mr. Bennett.

 

By the side of the railroad, southerly side, Platanthera hyperborea, bigger than usual with us. Along side of the old cattle stand, plenty of the big‑leaved Chenopodium album?

 

On my return, in the evening, found Father Holzer at my house. Good!

 

 

[In Gray, 1862, there is no Aspidium cristatum v. major, and no Aspidium species in Clinton's Botanical Index with a variety by that name.]

 

[1865]     June 20. In the 8*25' Erie R. R. train, went, with Father Holzer, to the Alden Station, & walked down (South) the road to Sheldon, looking for the swamp in which, according to Hadfield, or reported by D. F. Day, the Myrica cerifera grew, some years ago, in such quantities that the people thereabouts used the wax of the berries. I will maintain here that, after due inquiry & exploration, we failed to find it. On crossing to the first wood on the right, we entered it, & I there collected a fungus & Carex, C. Hitchcockiana & what Father H. thought (and is) C. Grayii. Returned to the road & kept on about 1 mile to another very swampy wood on the right, explored it, (collected some mosses & what seems to be a small fungus growing on a fruitless moss, but (the whole) which may be one of the Hepaticaceae in fruit. Returned to the road & kept on to the valley of Cayuga Creek, turned down it for 1/4 mile & then went to the Creek & explored its banks a short distance. Then sat down, in the shade, on its bank, by the road side, & lunched on bread & Bologna Sausage produced by Father H. Horace W. King (address Alden, Erie Co.) came along, & we got into conversation, & he told us he had a piece of metal which he had found in the rock, in the bed of the creek, 3 feet below the surface, malleable & only slightly reddened by aqua fortis. After lunch we went on, only 40 rods, to his house, & he showed us the 2 pieces into which he had broken it & gave me one, & I promised to find out its nature & to write him. Went back a short distance & explored a ravine, then back to the road & returned about 1 mile towards Alden, & struck into the woods on the right (east) & kept along them to a cross road, & but it to the main road & so to Alden. Went to the Hotel & got some cake, pie & cheese. Then searched on the road towards Alden Station on the Central R. R. to the first wood, & explored it pretty thoroughly. Took a little Carex Tuckermanii ?! Then back to the station, and, after waiting about 2 hours, took the mail train, & was home a little after 9 P.M. A very, very pleasant day. Malva moschata, in two varieties, or 2 species we found frequent by the road side, one white, one pink, the leaf seems to be the same.

 

In a letter from Gray, he says that, some Scirpus planifolius is mixed with Scirpus Clintonii.

 

[Note: Alden Station is a small town in Erie County near the junction of Wyoming and Genesee Counties. The headwaters of Cayuga Creek, that flows northwestward into Erie County, occur just north of what is today called North Java Station in Sheldon Township of Wyoming County. These two are headed south toward Sheldon in Wyoming County.]

 

[1865]     June 21. Strawberry Island. The little plant just above Little Bay does not show itself. Collected Equisetum limosum growing in the water, it fruits without branching. Also Carex utriculata, growing in the water in the East side, and the fungusy leaves & stems of Anemone Pennsylvanica.

 

[1865]     June 22. Crossed the ferry to Canada, took 3 specimens of Hyoscyamus. The Dracocephalum has disappeared. Walked up the R. R. & went into the woods on the right. Collected nothing but some mosses.

 

[1865]     June 23. Took 5 A. M. train to Rochester, & there the Accomodation back to Bergen, breakfasted, walked 4‑5 miles to The Open Swamp in that town, Genesee County, & explored it partially. Noticed, in abundance, Saracenia, Calopogon, Sedum latifolium, Lonicera oblongifolia, Myrica cerifera, Salix candida (the same as at Caledonia), Pinus strobus, Oxycoccus vulgaris, Senecio aureus, var. Juniperus prostrata = Juniperus virginiana v. humilis (= Juniperus Sabina var.) in the moss, Triglochin elatum, Potentilla fruiticosa, Linnaea, Galium boreale (beautiful) & Valeriana sylvatica.  Took also an oddish form of Cardamine hirsuta. Found 1 specimen of smallish green flowered Platanthera, 2 of a white flowered one, like dilatata (!) but scentless. 

 

Collected also the Eleocharis of the swamp (E. rostellata), Scirpus pungens, & S. caespitosus.

 

Also Carex polytrichoides, teretiuscula v. major (flava common) & gynocrates, siccata.

 

Also an Eriophorum, perhaps two (=E. polystachyon) Walking back, picked, in a dry wood, Carex pubescens. Got home at about 9 P.M. 

 

[Juniperus Sabina L. var. procumbens, Pursh. of "Rocky banks, borders of swamps, etc., N. Eng. to N. Minn., and northward" (Gray, ed 6) is now Juniperus horizontalis: See T. F. Allen letter, Vol. 1, 73 for reference to its use by physicians, also Allen's note Clinton sent a specimen Vol. 1(86)].

 

[1865]     June 24. Walked out on the Plains, Scirpus Clintonii gone. Collected some Turitis glabra. The Ipomoea pandurata back of [? Mochel's] looks very thrifty, but not near flowering. In the dry, oak grove, near where we found the Ophioglossum last year, I found, perhaps 6 plants of Conopholis, but, alas! past flowering, & trodden down. 

 

[1865]     June 25. Sunday. Yesterday, looked over my collections of the little Scirpus, & came to the conclusions, 1st, probably all that I collected on the open plains back of the quarries are S. Clintonii. 2d. All that I collected in the little wood back of the same station (very little) and all that I collected in Dr. White's grove, are S. planifolius. 3d. They are distinguishable, by the width of the leaves & by the scales, although, very likely, only forms of one species. P.M. Walked, on the pier, from the Black Rock Ferry to Squaw Island, on the way found 1 specimen of a Carex like Tuckermanii, but, perhaps different. Below the Sawmill (& a little above it) and on the Island, collected, I think, 2 species of Bromes, the seed, very likely, comes from the mills above. On the head of the Island, the Poa compressa is as fine as I ever saw.  Walked over the Island & took divers grasses &c. 

 

I am inclined to think that we have not only Festuca elatius, but another allied one with smaller spikelets and a much more branched panicle. 

 

[The Sawmill is perhaps located on the pier itself.]

 

 

[1865]     June 28. A. M. after Court, A. T. Patchin, Esq. drove me out on Chas. White's Corners Plank Road to his house, this side of Limestone Ridge, bread & milk. Am to get there, in the Fall, a root of the sweet honeysuckle, for Miss Docherty. Walked on, over the Ridge, to Smoke's Creek, & found there a, to me, new one of the Hepaticaceae, fruit in the frond (=Pellia epiphylla). Walked down to the R. R. Poa alsodes gone & P. nemoralis nearly gone. Collected here, & in the wood on the left of the R. R. going towards the City, the small wood Poa, also the tall one, both of which have flattened culms, and, probably, are forms of Poa compressa, must send them to Gray. From the wood on the left, walked through the swamp to the Turnpike, & along the Turnpike swamp, and (after some bread & milk at Capt. Maxwell's) in the sandy edge of the field of Tifft's Farm, took some Carices, &c. and, after crossing the Creek by the Ferry (2 cents fare met Mr. Webster, with a buggy, and he gave me a ride into the City. In the wood, on the left of the R. R. coming in, collected a Carex, which may be oligocarpa, sheaths & upper sides of the leaves not roughly pubescent, certainly the sheaths not very scabrous (= C. hitchcockiana). 

 

[This is a detailed account of one of Clinton's usual routes. Note there is a ferry at the Buffalo River. Also note how rare the "sweet honeysuckle" is at this time (also in Canadian citation above). This is Lonicera tartarica, one of the most noxious of our invasive shrubs.]

 

Scientific names may be looked up in the online checklist of Western New York plants. Find genus names beginning with  A - C  D - K  L - P  Q - Z.