• Oregon Trail Pioneer Parkman Offers Thoughts On Native Americans And Plants

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    FRANCIS PARKMAN (September 16, 1823 – November 8, 1893) was a historian, born in Boston, MA.  His father, the Rev. Francis Parkman, settled in Dorchester, MA, around 1633.  On April 28th, 1846, the younger Parkman set out from St. Louis on a great adventure along the Oregon Trail. The expedition was undertaken with two distinct ends in view, to study the Indians, a topic he touches upon in the ALS offered here, and to improve his health. Shortly after leaving St. Louis, he fell in with a band of Sioux and lived with them for several weeks. [Research included]

     

    One-page, 5 x 8, ALS, “The Pocine...of the old age writers is certainly not Pokeweed, but another plant covering many parts of the middle states and probably called Pucoon...

     

    “It has a yellow flower and a root of a bright red. The Indians of Western N.Y. still use it (the root) as a dye, especially for their baskets.

     

    “Yours very truly

     

    “F. Parkman”

     

    One vertical fold. Light toning.  No date, no place. Recipient is difficult to discern due to Parkman’s challenging writing.

     

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