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rowing up or down the stream. With a scoopnet rigged with a long pole, an important and at many times an indispensable implement for the collector, we dipped up from the bed of the stream a small white bivalve shell (Tellina), and a single dead specimen of the fresh-water Mussel, Unio* Jewettii Lea. The Floridian Unios have much lighter shells than most of the species found in the tributaries of the Ohio and Mississippi Rivers.t The once famous British pearls were obtained from a species of Unio (U. margaritiferus) found in the mountain streams of Great Britain, and the fishery was continued till the end of the last century in Scotland, where the mussels (Unios) were obtained in the River Tay by the peasantry previous to harvest time. The British pearl fishery has long ceased to be remunerative.
The fresh-water mussels must be exceedingly scarce in this vicinity, and in fact for many miles on the western side of Florida, for we found none living nor a fragment in any of the mounds and shell-heaps that we examined. The Portuguese and Spanish narrators of the expedition of De Soto have given absurd accounts of the quantities of pearls in the possession of the natives. It is highly probable that the Indians inhabiting Georgia and Alabama, at the time of and prior to the invasion of De Soto, lived in part upon the animals of the various species of Unio found in the rivers of those states,& for "heaps of mussel shells are to be seen on our river banks wherever Indians used to live.” §
It may be that the Indians referred to collected the shells solely for the purpose of procuring the pearls; yet the proportion of shells containing pearls is so small that when, as mentioned in the text, the Portuguese narrator says they
* Unio, a pearl.
+ The river mussels are found in the ponds and streans of all parts of the world. In Europe the species are few, though specimens are abundant. In North America both species and individuals abound. (Woodward.)
| George Gibbs, Esq., informs us that shell-heaps of Unio valves may be seen on the 1. Klamath Riger, in California, about one hundred miles from its mouth, and that the animal was used as food by the Indians as late as the years 1851-52.
§ See foot note, Irving's Conquest of Florida. Ed. 1860, p. 246.
obtained fourteen bushels of pearls”* from a certain sepulchre, and as can be found at another place in the text that a common foot soldier, whose name is given as Juan Terron, had "a linen bag in which were six pounds of pearls ;"7 and elsewhere, that everybody, Spanish and Indian had pearls, and "as large as filberts;"either the sources from whence the old historians derived their information were unreliable, or the Unios which are probably as abundant in the rivers as heretofore, have, to a very great extent, ceased to manufacture these much valued concretions. The latter case is hardly supposable. Perhaps one she
Perhaps one shell in a hundred might yield a pearl, of which not one in a hundred would be either clear or of perfect form, and not one in many thousands would be as large as a filbert.§
Between Camp Misery and the river, in wet or springy places upon the under side of pieces of boards or chips, many snails (Helix volvoxis Pareyss) can be collected, and the Coffee-shell (Melampus caffea) is close at hand. It is also found in the West Indies. Just outside of the fence that encloses the reservation of Fort Brooke, to the south, is a good place for obtaining Glandina truncata, a species of snail with a shell of a pink color, sometimes three inches long. It looks much like one that is found in Nicaragua (G. rosea). The Glandinas are carnivorous, and our Floridian is a cannibal, and eats without either hesitation or remorse the smaller snail, Helix volvoxis. The eggs of Glandina are of a whitish color, and about the size of a very small pea; it lives in moist grassy places, and a few boards that were on the ground at the locality referred to made an excellent trap; the Glandinas prefer the shade, and in order to protect themselves from the heat of the sun, hid themselves under the boards, which we frequently turned over,
* Irving's Conquest of Florida. Ed. 1869, p. 230. † Id., p. 239. | Id., p. 245.
ş"An account of the Irish pearl-fishery was given by Sir. R. Redding, in the “Philadelphia Transcript,” 1693. The mussels were found set up in the sand of the river. beds with their open side turned from the torrent. About one in a hundred might contain a pearl, and one pearl in a hundred might be tolerably clear." (Woodward's Recent and Fossil Siells, p. 431.)
always capturing some. Upon one occasion, in addition to several Glandinas, two specimens of a beautiful lizard rewarded our search.
We had heard at sundry times marvellous stories of numberless snakes of divers species, and of assorted sizes, that lay in wait to swallow, crush or poison unsophisticated strangers. These fearful tales led us to keep a sharp lookout when on the tramp. Either the snakes snuffed danger from afar and "hunted their holes," or else they are scarce, as we failed to secure a specimen, though two or three were
We concluded that our informants had in some way deceived their eyes by using the fusil oil which hereabouts is sold for whiskey, one dram of which would cause the drinker to see not only snakes but an entire menagerie. From the time when the serpent made mischief for the human race through the beguilement of its original mother, down to the present day, the snake family have had a bad reputation, and stories illustrating their wickedness, however preposterous, are readily believed.
Near the town, and in the immediate vicinity of the spot where Glandinas "most do congregate,” stands an ancient mound, in shape a flattened hemisphere, with the plane side down. Its position is such as to furnish a delightful out-look upon the bay and a fine view of the surrounding scenery. It is not of large size, being only one hundred and sixty paces in circumference and fifteen feet high; it was formerly more nearly semicircular in perpendicular outline, as the rains of centuries have washed it off at the summit, thus reducing the elevation, and consequently increasing the circumference of the base.
The mound was covered with grass, and many stately trees are near it whose graceful proportions form, by contrast with the general flatness of the ground, a conspicuous and charming feature in the landscape. From the investigations made by our party it was undoubtedly devoted to burial purposes, and but few shells were used in its con
struction. Six species of the common marine shells of the neighborhood were collected; also stone implements, and pieces of crumbling bones,-portions of the skeletons of men.
This mound* may have been the artificial eminence near the shore," upon which stood the dwelling of the cacique, Hirrihigua, who bravely opposed the adventurous but cruel Pampbilo de Narvæz in his expedition to Florida, in the year 1528; and the meagre remnants of a human form whose sepulchre we had rudely violated, may have belonged to the outraged and vindictive chief, who, stung by the remembrance of his wrongs, replied to the overtures of De Soto with words of scorn.
The following notes comprise an enumeration of the trees of the Rocky Mountains, etc., from Fort Benton, Nebraska, to Fort Colville and Fort Dalles, Oregon, with remarks on their distribution.
SMOOTH SUMAC (Rhus glabra?). No species extends along the Upper Missouri above Fort Union, and I am therefore inclined to think that the species of the Columbia Plain, which extends north to Fort Colville, is distinct though nearly allied to this. In Walla Walla valley it becomes fifteen feet high, and may attain, farther south, to the size of a small tree. It grows also in the Yakima valley, and west to Fort Dalles, Oregon. ASH-LEAVED MAPLE (Negundo aceroides). The Box
( Elder reaches the Rocky Mountains at Fort Benton, but does not cross them there, no species reaching the Columbia
* Vide Irving's Conquest of Florida. Ed. 1869, pp. 28, 58, 59.
Hirrihigua said, “I want none of their speeches nor promises; bring me their heads, and I will receive them jog fully.” Id., p. 60.
river, though the climate is so much milder than that of the Upper Missouri. This is an additional reason for considering the western species (of California, etc.) distinct from the eastern, though that of Utah and Western Texas may very probably be the latter. The Rhus shows a distribution the reverse of this, as compared with the eastern R. glabra,
SMOOTH MAPLE (Acer glabrum). This commences to appear at the eastern base of the Rocky Mountains, and grows entirely across to Fort Colville and the east slope of the Cascade Range, becoming forty feet high and a foot in diameter. A. tripartitum Nutt., is merely a young or dwarfed form of it in dry soil. CHOKE-CHERRY (Cerasus Virginiana?).* A tree, appa
* rently this species, grows all the way across the mountains, extending to the Bitterroot Range, and growing thirty feet high and six inches in diameter. A small cherry tree, or rather a shrub, grows about the borders of the Columbia Plain, apparently the same in leaf, but I think the fruit is larger. I have never seen the flowers.
CHERRY (Cerasus mollis?). I found a shrub at the Cour d'Alene Mission and westward, which I took for this from the leaves. It is stunted in that latitude.
WESTERN MOUNTAIN-ASH (Pyrus fraxinifolia? vel Americana?). The Mountain-ash of the western mountains, scarcely distinct from that of the north-east, first appeared on the east slope of the Caur d'Aleñe Range, and extends in small numbers to Fort Colville, scarcely deserving to be called a tree anywhere. I did not find it with fruit on this route. River HAWTHORN (Cratægus rivularis). A hawthorn
( with black berries, and otherwise the same every way, extends from the east base of the Rocky Mountains, west to the Cascade Range ("Willamette River,” Nutt.), forming a shrubby tree fifteen to twenty feet high. It is finest along the Spokan River.
* See Torrey and Gray's Flora of Nebraska.