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Lewis & Clark as Naturalists
The Journals Lewis and Clark as Naturalists

western snowberry

This entry describes one of 30 specimens that were sent to President Jefferson from Fort Mandan and then logged into the Museum in Philadelphia on November 16, 1805, but subsequently lost.  We include this species as an example of the breadth of discovery and the explorers’ scholarship; attribution to this species is based upon Lewis’ description, early botanical work on the specimens, current botanical literature, and knowledge of the regional flora.

Capt. Lewis, August 2, 1804 - N° 26. - Taken on the 2nd. of August in the p[r]arie at the Council bluff. it is a species of honeysuccle and the tube of the flour is very small and short they smell precisely like the English Honeysuccle so much admired in our gardens; this is a shrub and dose not run or vine. the vining honesuccle which bears a red flour is also common to the Illinois and is found as high up the Missoury as the mouth of the Kancez river above which I have not observed it. this species of shrub Honesuccle has some of it's leaves much indented; the fruit nearly ripe when the plant is still in blume; it makes a pretty groath and is a pleasant looking pla[n]t rises to three or four feet high and limbs are much branched.

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