Rendered by P. M. Eckel
Editor, The Clinton Papers
Buffalo Museum of Science
Missouri Botanical Garden, Res Botanica
April 25, 2003

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[1864.]    Sept. 1. A.M. Went to head of Rattlesnake Channel & collected Scirpus Torreyi. 10*25' P.M.  started for Utica, did not take a berth. 


[Rattlesnake Channel is that between Rattlesnake Island and the mainland opposite lower Grand Island in the Tonawanda Channel of the Niagara River. This island no longer exists.


[1864.]    Sept. 2. 6 A.M. arrived at Utica. Went immediately to Dr. Paine's house. John A. Paine, Jr. all alone, the maid having gone off to pick hops at $1.00 a day. In an incredibly brief time he got up a nice breakfast, coffee, bread & butter, boiled corn, potatoes, eggs, & boiled mutton. He packed up a glorious lunch & then got a horse & buggy at Butterfield's livery, opposite Bagg's Hotel. His heavy waterproof boots not being mended, he took a pair of waterproofs, as it turned out, for me!! and waded & walked on the old Mendon Turnpike & went 7 miles towards Jerusalem, to Whetmore's Tavern & stopped & went to swamp about 1/4 mile back of the Tavern. In the woody side of it, at one end, grows Carex folliculata, & in the marsh, limosa & v. Painei, pauciflora, & the Scheuchzeria. The limosa seems to be common in all these swamps. The Abies nigra in & on the edges of the swamp, & the alba in the wood. Platanthera blephariglottis & Eriophorum vaginatum also grow here. Woodwardia virginiana abundant, also Nemopanthes. Kept on the Turnpike until we just entered Jerusalem, then short to the right, then first road to the left, and to left, 1/2 ‑ 1 mile to near what Paine likens to a pit ‑(it looks circular & pit‑like from the hills ‑ tied by some bass [barn?] in right side of the road, & went to this swamp. Like the first, it is Sphagnous. It contains C. livida & chordorhiza, Lonicera oblongifolia, Triglochin elatum (this also found in next marsh) and two or three Rhynchosporas, alba, capillacea and a much smaller more mossy looking one = cup'a var. [=capillacea Torr.?] Kept right on, up the hill, about 1 mile, to a Mr. Townsend's on the tip of the hill, he has a club foot, the road here grassy from fence to fence, put horse into his stable on the right, his houses (the old one & the new) on the left. Went by his house, across lots, to the swamp Paine calls the hidden pond, not Sphagnum, turned to the right on entering it, & a little way down, at the roots of the tamaracks, grew the doubled Pogonias (ophioglossoides) which he found, & which Gray was so struck with. In the middle, a more watery part of this marsh, Paine found the Scirpus pauciflorus, & also a longer Scirpus, which he thinks, Gray will decide to be subterminalis, depauperata (=S. subt's var. terrestris). Here also grow Cladium & the Rhynchosporas, including the small one, &, in the bog holes along the fence running across the marsh, Utricularia gibba, and near the edge, a small Eleocharis. Towards the head, in the open marsh, C. pseudo‑cyperus. A Muhlenbergia (probably glomerata) abundant in this marsh, and also [... ink blot] in the others. Carex chordorhiza also in it. In this & the last. A Lobelia, seems intermediate Kalmii & Nuttallii, (= Kalmii) Kept on, turned to the right, down the hill, & then turned to the left & kept straight on through Cedar Pond (village) up the hill about 1 mile to a house on the left side of the road by Smith's Pond (which is hidden from the road, tied, walked by the house over top of the knoll, & to the Pond, shore marshy, on the wet marsh, found Selaginella apus. Walked to the boat house, then turned to the right, & walked perhaps 1/2 mile, round the pond, & there C. flava was exceedingly abundant, & so was Carex Crawei. Turned round & drove just through Cedar Pond village, & then turned to the left, & passed up a valley, along a great swamp, the waters of which run south, for a mile & more, when, without any remarkable ascent, we came upon a brooklet running northerly & emptying (Paine says) into Sh... [GL? @CANT READ] Creek. Along it & the road side, Paine says, C. Schweinitzii abundant, but he found it too late, and along the ditch by the swamp, soon after passing Cedar Lake, he noticed from the Stage in which he was travelling, "a remarkable Juncus." This road, which was quite level, brought us into the Menden Turnpike, some miles south of Wetmore's Tavern. Drove along it, into Utica. Got there in time to take a bowl of bread & milk with Paine, got into the 10 P.M. train for Buffalo, where I arrived at about 6 A.M. 


Note. All the Carices mentioned above (except C. pseudocyperus) had passed. Collected a box full of Cladium, Scirpus (but pauciflora, that had passed) Cladium, & one thing or another, & also grabbed some seeds for Day's Sphagnum. In all these swamps, a Solidago, of which I took a specimen.          


[Triglochin maritimum var. elatum (T. elatum Nutt. in Gray "grows in cold and fresh bogs, from W. New York to Wisconsin ..." p. 437. Triglochin maritimum L. grew in "Salt marshes along the coast; salt springs, Salina, New York; shore of the Great Lakes, and northward" (p. 437, Gray 1962.). Cedar Pond village is probably Cedar Lake.]


[1864.]    Sept. 6. Tuesday. A.M. Scattered the seeds of Carex folliculata in the marshy copse at the upper end of Day's Sphagnum, nearest carriage road into Forest Lawn, & seeds of other marsh plants, collected last week near Utica, in the more open marshy ground adjoining the copse westerly. The whole of this marsh & the marsh of the grove beautiful with Pedicularis lanceolata, Lobelia siphilitica, Aster novaeangliae now flowering and Solidago Muhlenbergii & ulmifolia, which, apparently runs into altissima. The petals of Epilobium palustre v. lineare (?) as well as those of E. coloratum, are cleft. In swamp of the Grove, near hill side, found Cuscuta Gronovii in bigger masses than any specimen of C. compacta I have rec'dt [@abbrev. rec'dt = received? recognized?]. Gathered various flowers &c. including Chelone glabra. In the lower part of Day's Sphagnum, Rudbeckia lacininata abundant, but long passed.


P.M. Off Little Bay of Strawberry, with George, caught a small mess of small perch. Botanized on head of the Island. A very bushy thistle not yet in flower, leafy to the head, leaves broader & not so cut as the common one, which I take to be Cirsium discolor. Once more strongly persuaded that Gentiana detonsa & G. crinita are one. Both here are bushy, & have the deep blue color of C. crininta. Sorghum nutans & Andropogon furcatus both on the head of the Island. Parnassia canadensis, whitens the ground.


[1864.]    Sept. 7. Received letter from Dr. Engelmann, dated 3d, stating that the Cuscuta from Youngstown (Aug. 29 supra) is his C. inflexa, formerly called by him coryli, & called by him, in Gray's manual, C. umbrosa, Bayrich.  Looked at Silliman's Journal. Gray is out with Scirpus Clintonii. P.M. Rowed round Squaw, Smuggler's Creek closed by 3 logs. Walked on the Island & collected somethings, nothing new. The small headed, slender stemmed, late flowering Juncus, seems to be all of shoots from thicker, broken stalks. Surely I have collected it earlier unbroken, preserving all its characteristics. Got one flower of Hibiscus moscheutos, & next morning, found a humble bee in it. I identified, to my satisfation, for the first time, Sinapis nigra. Evening, found Grote at the Room.'].


[The Room of the Buffalo Society of Natural Sciences; Augustus Grote.]


[1864.]    Sept. 9. Walked, on State Line R. R. to Smoke's Creek & back, after dinner. The hoe has passed over the whole track, and the Sida spinosa & Physalis ungulata at the cattle station are destroyed. Glad to see a plant of Xanthium spinosum peeping from under it. Polygonum acre & incarnatum seem as common as any of our Polygonums, Gaura biennis has made its appearance on the right hand bank of the R. R., between the bend of the Creek and the switch. The right hand of the r. r. by the dark wood, after passing Marilla Street, beautified, in spots, by Gentiana Andrewsii and Spiranthes cernua in flower. The Coreopsis I discovered last year extends now, in the ditches, beyond the dark wood. Day having questioned whether it be not the aristosa, reexamined it, & am confirmed in the opinion that it is the trichosperma. (Evening, received by Lieutenant Hatch, he sending it to the house by his brother, a small package of plants from Miss Mary H. Clark, for examination.)


[This passage is excellent to orient oneself to the situation at the Lake Shore Bridge over the Buffalo Creek.]


[1864.]    Sept. 10. With Day, crossed at Waterloo. From grounds of the house, formerly owned & occupied by William H. Thomson, by the millwright, took specimen of what Day says is Symphoricarpos vulgaris (!) passed flowering. In the village below, took a specimen of what Day thinks Nicotiana rusticana (!) from a single plant growing, apparently spontaneously, in the garden, by the fence, by & below the first tavern or grocery above the ferry. Walked up the railroad to the junction, took 2 specimens Solanum carolinense. A little beyond, right side of the track, 3 or 4 quite immature Blitum capitatum. Took first cross road to right, & kept along edge of woods & crossed another cross road, &, in the edge of a grovelet Day showed me his Lonicera Tatarica & I took 2 of the 3 leafy sprigs thereof. Struck across the fields &c., to the r.r., walked up to the wood opposite Roses' Point, through the wood to the beach, & up the beach to Windmill Point. On the rocky point above found Rhynchospora capillacea. Returned by the beach, and, being too late for the Ferry at Waterloo, took the Lake Huron Car, on the boat, at 8*40' P.M.           


On the way down the beach found Day's Ptelea, not on the bank of the creeklet where he located it, but 20 ‑ 40 rods below, on the top & edge of the sand bank.


Beach. Abutilon Avicennae, in scattered plants, noticed here & there on the beach, not far from houses, Chenopodium anthelmiticum not abundant. Chenopodium botrys common, Calamintha nuttallii beautiful with mats of rooting runners. Cakile occurs here & there. Polygonum aviculare, growing on the sand, assumes a singular growth, took some, also specimen of Vitis cordifolia in blue fruit. Also Naias flexilis, plant very short. Also the Tricuspis, & Cyperus diandrus, C. filiculmis, & C. Schweinitzii, and also divers specimens of Cyperus with yellow spikes, often small, in patches, differing in size &c., none bulb‑bearing, but am afraid it is all strigosus. Day found 3 little Lycoperdon ? (puff ball) stiped, & I brought them home.


[It is a curiosity how infrequent Lonicera tatarica was at this time, whereas now it is almost ubiquitous in parks, residences and other areas adjacent to horticultural activity.]


[1864.]   Sept. 12.  Took 2 P.M. train to Suspension Bridge. Walked back to the Falls & in my way, stopped at John T. Bush's (the old Buchanan Place). Mr. B. wife & Florence absent, at the East, & Mr. & Ms. Ford in possession) reclaimed the packet of paper left there July 21, with plants collected at Devil's Hole.  In it leaves of an Uvularia, which, at the time, I thought might be U. perfoliata. About 1/2 way down the American stair, & then took path under the cliff, descended, went to & ascended the cliff below the stairs & so entered the stairway & up. Collected some Gentiana detonsa &c.  walked to Cataract Hotel & chatted a little while with Mr. Gerauld & Peter B. Porter.  The latter reminded me that, when I was at Black Rock, in the Spring of 1826, with Professor Eaton & his scholars, Major Donald Fraser showed in Fort Erie that among the things he showed in the battery in the wood he, Hane Johnson & others took & told in that they had rat tail files to spike the cannon, that Johnson & another each spiked one, & that, having lost his file (he received his wound in this affair) he thrust in his (pistol?) ramrod & twisted it off.  That the 2 cannon were lying there at the time, that I took my (geological) cold chisel & hammered & found that the spiking of one of the three was soft metal & so verified the Major's story, very much to his delight. Scattered some seed of Alyssum calycinum on the sides of the road by the Judge Porter place, in the Cataract Hotel Side, & also, some distance up, on the river side of the road running by the river.  Observed Abutilon avicennae, as a weed in a garden. Collected two or three weeds.  Home by the 6*15' train. 


[1864.]    Sept. 13. A.M. After chambers, took street car to Virginia & walked up Main to North St. The Silybrum & the Nigella have disappeared from the old garden on the E. side of Main below Allen St. Found there, some Delphinium consolida, &, in the next vacant lot above, two specimens of Ipomoea purpurea. On the corner lot of North St. & Linwood Avenue, opposite Ascension Church, found Cyperus strigosus, large & in goodish condition. At Judge Masten's took 1 specimen of Salvia splendens. Miss Masten told me that they had had it for several years, & raised it solely from slips. On examination, satisfied that this Mexican don't mature his seeds with us. Called on Mr. Warren Bryant opposite. Mr. B. having told me he had a tree there with two large red flower buds on it. The tree is Magnolia acuminata in fruit. On the old burying ground, corner of North & Rogers St. Euphorbia cyparissias and on the low ground, Gentiana crinita, abundant. On Rogers St.? to Edward St. No Panicum Xalapense? I have now visited all the fields in which I found it last year, & it has wholly disappeared. Along Edward to Main, where I took a street car home. Brought home a head of Bidens frondosa, & find the achenia are not bristly upwards, but bristly downwards, at least on the awns & the upper part of the achenia. Enclosed the achenia to Gray.


P. M. Street car to Cold Spring, walked to Grove, and, in the entrance thereto, beyond the barn, principally on the left hand side of the carriage road, up to & on the edge of the pond, & about the old lime kiln, scattered some of the seeds of Alyssum Calycinum I got at Brock's Monument, and scattered the rest in the two old quarries in the field of Dr. White's grove, west side of Main, beyond the Turnpike gate. In that grove took leaves of 3 & acorns of 2 species of oak. Vilfa vaginaeflora common, find it by the road side, & at the further quarry.


Quere  Gray says Naias minor has not yet been recognized in this country.  Now we have first the Naias I collected last year, abundant & often quite branching & long, second a Naias? growing in small tufts without any apparent stems, on a sandy bottom, with more grass‑like though shortish leaves. Have collected a little of it by Strawberry Island, and on the Canadian side in walking down the shores from Windmill Point, with Day, on the 10th instant. Mem. Collect especially No. 2.


[Note street car line on Main Street.]


[1864.]    Sept. 15. Before breakfast, walked along the Terrace 6th Street, around in front of the Penitentiary to Niagara St. & so home. Nil. Stopped at Howland's, & took from his garden, Hibiscus Trionum, a Scabiosa (?) 1 specimen, with simple leaves, the fruit of what Day told me was Clematis virginiana, & the first has no tail, only a persistent & featherless style, (Day says that Gray wrote him that it is C. viticolor  a Fraxinus, probably F. excelsior, a small bluish Funkia (?), and Veronica noveboracensis, without any awn or appendage to the seales of the involucre.


[Wood has Funkia ovata, Spr. as the Blue Day‑lily. Gray's Manual of 1862, under Hemerocallis, "The White and Blue Day‑Lillies of the gardens are species of Funkia, a very different genus. P. 468.]


[1864.]    Sept. 17. Had  a boat drawn over the Dam, & examined Black Rock Harbor, nearly up to the Ferry, for water weeds and mud weeds. Nil.


[The Ferry was the Buffalo and Lake Huron railroad ferry at the southern end of the stone pier.]


[1864.]    Sept. 21. Took 2 1/2 P.M. stage for Springville. Took supper at Bu..'s [illegible] Mill, and a John       got up first & took off my hat, by mistake. I, perforce, took his. Think he got the worst of it, as mine was a shocking bad hat. Reached Springville at about 9 1/2, and very kindly entertained by Pliny Smith. He lives alone with his wife. His son, Orville, keeps store in the Village, & has a very nice wife. Hiram Smith, who, formerly, kept the Franklin House in Buffalo, married Pliny's sister & they now live opposite him. The old lady says that, in 1832, she rode in the stage with me & one of the Wilkesons (probably Bill) from Buffalo to Canandaigua, that she, being timid, going down what seemed to her a bad hill, inquired whether accidents did not happen there, that Wilkeson, to frighten her, said "Yes Ma'm. The other night, the stage broke down and an old woman was torn all to pieces." Wherepon she replied "The doctors have put her together, again, Sir! I suppose." She seems proud of this. Col. Cook (cousin of .....[?]) married P.S.'s sister, and they are one of the principal inhabitants. Mr. Smith tells me his daughter, Mrs. Reed, a widow, lives, with her boy, in the Genessee Block in Buffalo, and is fond of botany. She cannot live in Springville, loses her voice there. Some  ...ctual [illegible] affection, perhaps. I promised to call on her. Mr. Smith tells me that he is credibly informed that the tobacco‑worm has made its appearance in this county. Also that he, & one of his neighbors, observed, this year, for the first time, a large worm which attacks the tomato ‑ as I understood him ‑ both leaf and fruit. He had killed all he says, & we looked for one in vain.


[1864.]    Sept. 22. Strolled, observed a large‑flowered Oenothera, probably nothing but the biennis, but took specimen. Went to the Fairground & thence walked over to the famous Spring. Nil. Returning, on dry hill side, found & took specimen of Botrychium lunarioides, quite small. In the grove north of the Fairground, found & took a Muhlenbergia probably the same I found last year, in Canada below the Suspension Bridge. Delivered the  Agl. [= Agricultural address between 1 & 2 P.M. Then strolled across the fields south of the Fairground to the road, found a very little of an erect Muhlenbergia which, I think, I had not collected before. Across the road & fields to the Creek, & across it into a deep wood, Nil. Up the hill, on its side, Botrychium lunar[ioides]. Through the wood to the road, & so back to the village. After tea strolled about the creek &c., nil. The leaf of what I have taken for Helenium autumnale is very different from the narrow leaved one I collected at the Falls. May not it, our common one be Leptopoda?


In the evening, P.S. & wife, & myself, called on his son, Orville. While we were there. Abbey, aged a little over 21, and Amelia Kelly aged 15, a nice looking couple, came in alone, & were married by P.S., he being a J. P., and then they started off, as the bridegroom said, "for the spree" at the Tavern.


[In Gray's 1862 Manual there is a Leptopoda brachypoda Torrey & A. Gray "Damp soil, from Illinois southward." (p. 224). There is no reference to this species in Clinton's Botanical Index.]


[1864.]    Sept. 23. After breakfast, P.S. drove me, in his buggy, to the top of Jackman's hill, 12‑13 miles from Springville. From Springville to Ellicottville, 18 miles. I walked on. In spring fed ditches by the road side, found Callitriche verna? ‑ yes, in flower & fruit, & took specimen of it, also a Callitriche with narrow leaves, coming to the surface & there presenting a star. This was not in flower nor fruit, & I found the other growing from the same root. Took specimen of both and, on my return home, inclosed some to Dr. Engelmann. Reached Ellicottville at about 1 A.M. Walked on to Salmon Porter's at the foot of Rock City Hill, 10 miles from Ellicottville, got there about 4 P.M. & slept there. On that hill side too, Botrychium lunarioides. While I was gathering it & lying in the great bed of moss, Mr. Porter came along, with a skunk he & his dog Curley had killed. Says he is going to try out the oil, that it is good for a great many things. A mile or two south of Ellicottville, by roadside, found one plant of Blitum capitatum, too old & withered, but took it.


[Oct. 1 below "Received Engelmann's letter of Sept. 29, deciding that the Callitriche collected Sept. 23d, is the true C. verna ...".]


[1864.]    Sept. 24. It thundered & rained very hard in the night. After breakfast walked up to & through Rock City. Nothing new but Aster acuminatus. Found Ilex monticola in ripe berry. Rained pretty much all the morning, but cleared off at about 1 o'clock. Reached Salamanca a little after 11 A.M. Dined. On the hillside, collected some of the white flowered Gentiana Andrewsii, also Archangelica hirsuta, a Cuscuta, probably Gronovii, = is the C. inflexa. Saw some Baptisia tinctoria ‑ took some of the seed. Took train at about 4 P.M. Missed ( by falling into a nap) the train at Dunkirk and so had to take 3 A.M. train & got home on Sunday the 25th, at about 4 1/2 A.M.


[Oct. 1 below "Received Engelmann's letter of Sept. 29, deciding that ... the Cuscuta collected at Salamanca on the 24th, is Cuscuta inflexa."]


[1864.]    Sept. 25. Sunday. Mailed to Engelmann the Cuscuta found at Salamanca, & also the Callitriche found on the 23d. In the evening, Dr. J. W. Robbins called & we talked over the plants he sent me from Lake Superior. He had some from Niagara Falls, and had found, at the Sawmill about 1/2 mile above the Village, Azolla caroliniana, a Sagittaria, with somewhat awned fruit & a very narrow leaf, which he thinks may be new, but which looks what I call heterophylla, and, at Geneva, a Myriophyllum in fruit. Gave me specimen of all three. He leaves tomorrow morning for his home. As to the Glycyrrhiza lepidota, on the shore, above Fort Erie, he suggested that the seed vessels may have been brought there on buffalo skins, at an early day, says that he has seen them on buffalo skins.


[Oct. 1 below "Received Engelmann's letter of Sept. 29, deciding that the Callitriche collected Sept. 23d, is the true C. verna ...".]


[1864.]    Sept. 26. Monday. Rev. L. Holzer of Rochester called in the evening, & brought me some plants, principally therefrom, also Bolton's work, on the Fungi of Halifax, in German, 3 vols. 1795, a gift from him to the Society. Introduced him to Day.


[Halifax was not in Nova Scotia but rather Yorkshire in northern England. James Bolton (1750‑1799) An History of Fungusses growing about Halifax 4 vol. translated into German (1795‑1820), the first three volumes by Willdenow and the last volume, apparently not part of Holzer's gift, and a supplement to the first three, translated by Nees von Esenbeck and his son T. nees von Esenbeck. Bolton was a self‑taught naturalist specializing in natural history illustration work. As with many contemporary and subsequent mycological works, the primary interest of these volumes is in the quality of their illustrations, allowing the student to recognize the fungus from the picture, as in works by Nees von Esenbeck and James Sowerby, with a legacy in New York in Mary Banning's mushroom illustrations and to some extent Mary Wilson. Ms. Wilson apparently came to curate the early botanical collections of the Buffalo Society of Natural Sciences and was a protege of Clinton's, much like Charles Peck, botanist for the New York State collections in Albany, New York, who was a modern and technical taxonomist. Cook, Rita, 1996. A Celebration of the Work of James Bolton of Halifax. website:, seen April 24, 2003.]


[1864.]    Sept. 27th & 28th. A. M. engaged with Mr. Holzer & Mr. Day in selecting specimens from my duplicates, for Mr. H. 28th. 5*45' P.M. Took train, with mother & Minnie, & accompanied them to Syracuse on their way to New York. Slept at The Syracuse House.


[Note how long the women would be away ‑ for months!]


[1864.]    Sept. 29th. Street car to Salina & went into the marsh following left bank of a stream to the Lake. Collected Scirpus marit's [= maritimus] & lacustris. The Chenopod which Gray thought might be Chenopodium rubrum (Blitum maritima), Leptochloa fascicularis, Panicum proliferum, a very small Cyperus, & a single specimen of Polygonum aviculare, which looks queer. Crossed the stream & walked up along the Lake to Liverpool, in a stream near Liverpool, found a waterweed, branching, with serrate leaves, looking like a fucus = Naias Major. Crossed the canal at Liverpool, & walked back, on Plank Road to Salina. On the road a large flowered & large leaved white Malva moschata, took one specimen. At Salina, in flat field east of the canal, took specimen of the Salicornia, & also of a Juncus, probably tenuis, but looks odd (= J. bulbosa). Collected, also, some Atriplex and Chenopodium glaucum. Commenced raining before I reached the street car, & rained all day. Dined at Syracuse, & took 2*5' train to Buffalo.              


[This passage is listed under "Liverpool","Salina" and "Syracuse" in Clinton's Miscellaneous Index. The Lake is Onondaga Lake and Liverpool is right near its shore. "The Erie Canal extends E. and W. through near the center of the [Onondaga] co. The Oswego Canal extends from the Erie at Syracuse, N. through Salina and Clay, to Lake Ontario at Oswego." (French 1860, p. 475). French also mentions that at Syracuse "The several canals and railroads that terminate at or pass through [Syracuse] give to it important commercial advantages." (p. 488). ]


[1864.]    Sept. 31. Friday. Mailed specimen of the Leptochloa, Panicum, and waterweed, collected yesterday, to Gray, & also to Mr. Holzer.



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.