Plants on the Trail with Lewis and Clark

Plants on the Trail with Lewis and Clark

by William Munoz, Dorothy Hinshaw Patent, D. Patent
     
 


When Meriwether Lewis and William Clark embarked on their landmark journey of discovery in 1804, President Thomas Jefferson directed them to notice “the soil and face of the country, its growth and vegetable productions.” The explorers collected and preserved nearly two hundred seeds and specimens, from small prairie flowers to towering evergreen trees… See more details below

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Overview


When Meriwether Lewis and William Clark embarked on their landmark journey of discovery in 1804, President Thomas Jefferson directed them to notice “the soil and face of the country, its growth and vegetable productions.” The explorers collected and preserved nearly two hundred seeds and specimens, from small prairie flowers to towering evergreen trees, many of them previously unknown to science. From the Indians they encountered, they learned which plants were edible—thus avoiding starvation—and which could be used as building materials for their canoes and shelters. Looking to find a water route across North America, map the uncharted territory, and discuss peaceful trade with the Indians, Lewis and Clark became central figures in the country’s westward expansion and major contributors to its scientific scholarship.

In this welcome companion to Animals on the Trail with Lewis and Clark, Dorothy Hinshaw Patent traces the celebrated journey, examines the rich array of plant life the men sighted, and tells what became of the specimens over the ensuing two centuries. Adorned with William Munoz’s beautiful photographs of a variety of colorful plants, this visual feast is sure to captivate nature lovers and historians alike. Route map, suggestions for further reading, chronology of plants collected, index.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"Of the many books recently published on the Lewis and Clark expedition, this is one of the most tightly focused, most interesting, and most beautiful." Booklist, ALA

"Good-quality, full-color photos...author's knowledge...keen interest...very evident...fascinating account...bring(s) to life an amazing episode in American history." SCHOOL LIBRARY JOURNAL School Library Journal

"Excellent...Of the many books recently published on the...expedition, this is one of the most...focused...interesting, and... beautiful." BOOKLIST Booklist, ALA

Children's Literature
Along the route to the Pacific Ocean, Lewis and Clark followed Jefferson's edict to make note of the soil and the plants it yielded. They chronicled nearly two hundred species, many previously unknown to science. Patent sets the stage with a quick look at Jefferson's botanical interests that led him to send Lewis to Philadelphia to study botany with Benjamin Barton. A chapter follows Lewis and his use of this training as he collected and mounted specimens along the trail (which are still preserved in Philadelphia). Lewis made notes about the uses to which his discoveries might be put. Another chapter covers the kinds of trees such as cottonwood, new species of pine and spruce, and the changing treescape as they moved west. A chapter on food plants is followed by a fascinating discussion of the dispersal of Lewis's specimens, the seeds he collected, the various plants he introduced back east that are now garden staples, the astounding discovery of 'quarantine corn" that matured in 40 days rather than the whole summer Jefferson was used to, and other outcomes of the journey. Muñoz's beautiful photographs of flowers and trees are interestingly captioned and the few pictures of artifacts or settings are useful. A complete list of specimens Lewis and Clark noted and which survive in the Philadelphia herbarium are listed by name and the present-day state from which they were taken. With names such as field horsetail, spiny goldenweed, Indian tobacco, rabbit brush, and snakeweed, they conjure up the landscape that still exists today. A beautiful book and a fine companion to Patent's and Muñoz's Animals on the Trail of Lewis and Clark (Clarion, 2002) and The Lewis and Clark Trail Then and Now(Clarion, 2002). 2003, Clarion,
— Susan Hepler
School Library Journal
Gr 4-8-A companion volume to Animals on the Trail with Lewis and Clark (Clarion, 2002). An excellent two-page map shows camps and landmarks along the route of the explorers from the (current) Iowa/Illinois/Missouri border north and west to the Pacific Ocean at what is now the Washington/Oregon border. Lewis and Clark led the army expedition to explore and map more than 2000 miles of North America, find a water route across the country, discuss peaceful trade with the Indian tribes, and study and record soil and vegetation along the way. Lewis's knowledge of plants and their medicinal properties and Clark's familiarity with waterway navigation and land surveying led to the overwhelming success of this amazing journey. The explorers filled journals with carefully detailed descriptions of various plant species in their natural settings as well as how they used them as building material, food, and medicines. Patent gives examples that attest to the cleverness and mechanical abilities of the explorers and to the aid they received from the Nez Perce, Mandan, and other tribes. Good-quality, full-color photos and reproductions clearly extend the text. A listing of plant specimens collected and dried by the pair that can be found in the Lewis and Clark Herbarium (Philadelphia), sources for further reading, and a thorough index are appended. The author's knowledge of and keen interest in her subject matter is very evident in this fascinating account that helps bring to life an amazing episode in American history.-Susan Scheps, Shaker Heights Public Library, OH Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780618067763
Publisher:
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Publication date:
03/24/2003
Edition description:
None
Pages:
112
Product dimensions:
8.00(w) x 10.00(h) x 0.25(d)
Age Range:
9 - 12 Years

What People are saying about this

From the Publisher
"Of the many books recently published on the Lewis and Clark expedition, this is one of the most tightly focused, most interesting, and most beautiful." Booklist, ALA

"Good-quality, full-color photos...author's knowledge...keen interest...very evident...fascinating account...bring(s) to life an amazing episode in American history." SCHOOL LIBRARY JOURNAL School Library Journal

"Excellent...Of the many books recently published on the...expedition, this is one of the most...focused...interesting, and... beautiful." BOOKLIST Booklist, ALA

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