William Bartram

Blazing trails, exploring nature, and long hikes must be hereditary for Chief.  His great-grandmother, Sarah Ann “Sadie” (Bartram) Baker was a relative of American naturalist William Bartram (1739-1823).

WilliamBartram

The following information is from Wikipedia:

William Bartram (April 20, 1739 – July 22, 1823) was an American naturalist. The son of Ann (née Mendenhall) and the naturalist John Bartram, William Bartram and his twin sister Elizabeth were born in Kingsessing, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.  As a boy, he accompanied his father on many of his travels to the Catskill Mountains, the New Jersey Pine Barrens, New England, and Florida. From his mid-teens, Bartram was noted for the quality of his botanic and ornithological drawings. He also had an increasing role in the maintenance of his father’s botanic garden, and added many rare species to it.

In 1773, he embarked upon a four-year journey through eight southern colonies. Bartram made many drawings and took notes on the native flora and fauna, and the native American Indians. In 1774, he explored the St. Johns River, where he had memorable encounters with aggressive alligators, and also visited a principal Seminole village at Cuscowilla, where his arrival was celebrated with a great feast. He met Ahaya the Cowkeeper, chief of the Alachua band of the Seminole tribe. When Bartram explained to the Cowkeeper that he was interested in studying the local plants and animals, the chief was amused and began calling him Puc Puggy (the flower hunter).   Bartram continued his explorations of the Alachua Savannah, or what is today Paynes Prairie. William Bartram wrote of his experiences exploring the Southeast in his book Travels through North & South Carolina, East & West Florida, the Cherokee Country, the Extensive Territories of the Muscogulges, or Creek Confederacy, and the Country of the Chactaws, Containing an Account of the Soil and Natural Productions of Those Regions, Together with Observations on the Manners of the Indians, published in 1791 and which is today simply known as Bartram’s Travels.

The Bartram Trail is a hiking trail in North Carolina, Georgia, and South Carolina that commemorates his journeys through the area.

The following information is from the Bartram Trail Conference website:

William Bartram was America’s first native born naturalist/artist and the first author in the modern genre of writers who portrayed nature through personal experience as well as scientific observation. Bartram’s momentous southern journey took him from the foothills of the Appalachian mountains to Florida, through the southeastern interior all the way to the Mississippi River. His work thus provides descriptions of the natural, relatively pristine eighteenth-century environment of eight modern states: North and South Carolina, Georgia, Florida, Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana and Tennessee. William Bartram published an account of his adventure in 1791.

It quickly became an American classic and Bartram’s Travels has been described by one scholar as the most astounding verbal artifact of the early republic.  Bartram’s book became an immediate success in Europe where it influenced the romantic poets and armchair travelers who savored the descriptions of exotic, sub-tropical Florida as well as the relatively unexplored southeastern interior.

Particularly enlightening and appealing were Bartram’s accounts of the Seminole, Creek and Cherokee Indians. During the first quarter of the 19th century William Bartram became the grand old man of American natural science, advising and mentoring the first generation of naturalists who were beginning to explore the new territories being added to the young nation.

The Bartram Trail Conference, Inc., founded in 1976, has sought to identify and mark Bartram’s southern journey and works to promote interest in developing recreational trails and botanical gardens along the route. The BTC also seeks to encourage the study, preservation and interpretation of the William Bartram heritage at both cultural and natural sites in Bartram Trail states.

For more information on the Bartram Trail, visit https://bartramtrailconference.wildapricot.org

Toad:  I see nothing that says Bartram made his wife go along on these travels…

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