Walter Deane (1848-1930) Papers; Journal Jan-June 1900. Botany Libraries, Archives of the Gray Herbarium, Harvard University Herbaria, Cambridge, Mass.

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— 1900 — Jan. — June

Last edit almost 2 years ago by Judy Warnement
page [1] 28 Jan 1900 (seq. 2)
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page [1] 28 Jan 1900 (seq. 2)

1 Cambridge, Mass. 1900 Jan. 28

A clear, cold, crisp, bright morning, mercury 24° {degrees} at 8 o'clock. Cloudy warmer P.M. Light snow in the evening. There has been scarcely any snow on the ground all winter.

Since my return from the A.O.U. meeting last Nov. 18, the days have slipped by quickly. My daily work at the Museum has kept me busily occupied all the time. My regular evening engagements are the Nuttall Club on the 1st & 3d Mondays of each month, the New England Botanical Club, on the 1st Frid. of each month, and the Shakespeare Club every two weeks. The months from June to Nov. mark the intermission.

My Herbarium still increases. I have my plant mounting done by Mrs. Kittie C. Littlefield, and she is coming to the house now to help in arranging sheets and the like.

Yesterday afternoon I attended the Comm. meeting of the Gray Herbarium where the question of raising $3000 was discussed. This sum is the deficit for the year. There will always be this deficit until a larger fund is raised. Dr. Robinson will write a brief letter of appeal, and this will be sent out.

From the estate of my uncle Rev. R.C. Waterston I have secured quite a number of books for my library. Most of them I bought on appraisal. The bulk of the books went to the Mass. Historical Society

Last edit almost 2 years ago by Judy Warnement
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2 Cambridge, Mass. 1900 Jan. 28 (No. 2)

Loxia leucoptera This morning I walked with George and Mary to Kingsley Park in Fresh Pond Grove, and I was not disappointed. As we reached the point in the Grove where the road runs round a plot of grass and trees a flock of birds arose and flew a short distance, only to alight again. A glance showed that they were what I had longed to meet. White-winged Crossbills (Loxia leucoptera). We watched them to great advantage for a number of minutes. I counted twenty-six birds of which eight were red birds in most beautiful plumage. They spent most of the time on the driveway busily hopping about and picking up something. Once we approached within twenty feet of them and with our glasses watched most carefully, afterwards going directly to the spot where they were at work. There was no sign of any seeds to be found, and we inferred that they were eating bits of gravel. Occasionally with a whirl and a merry gingle of twittering voices they would fly up into the neighboring pine or scatter into some of the smaller trees, but soon they would return to the driveway and run busily about picking.

Spinus pinus With them, and keeping close among them were four Pine Siskins (Spinus pinus). They are pretty little creatures with heavily striped breasts and sides, the yellow on the wings showing

Last edit almost 2 years ago by Judy Warnement
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3 Cambridge, Mass. 1900 Jan. 28 (No. 3)

plainly. Once I heard the sweet note of one of them as it flew from a bush and joined the flock. They too were busily picking in the driveway. The ground was frozen hard. The birds were all still there when we returned from the point of the grove where we looked over the frozen pond and listened to the deep rumbling sounds that run here and there across the ice.

We then walked out to Brattle St. and George & I continued our trip to Charles River behind the hospital. We went out over the flats, frozen solid and carpeted with the soft, dead blades Spartina juncea and reached the edge of the water, frozen mostly, but with open patches here and there. From there we walked home. I saw during our stroll three flocks of Crows, consisting of four, six, & eight birds respectively while by the river there on four individuals were flying about and alighting near the water's edge, on the eternal outlook for food. It is a mystery to me how the hundreds of Crows about us manage to get enough food daily through the winter to satisfy their voracious appetites.

I forgot to mention a regular engagement on every third Thursday of the month from Nov. to May, our very social dining club of ten members.

Last edit almost 2 years ago by Judy Warnement
page [4] 3 Feb 1900 (seq. 5)
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page [4] 3 Feb 1900 (seq. 5)

4 Cambridge, Mass. 1900 Feb. 3

Syrnium nebulosum Weather clear and cool. Dr. W. Faxon called at the Museum this morning and told us that there was a Barred Owl (Syrnium nebulosum) in Norton's Woods. Accordingly this afternoon I met Dr. Faxon at his room at about 4.45. O. A. Lothrop accompanied me. We walked over to the woods, but a short distance away, a grove of White Pines mainly of a few acres in extent. Beyond the woods a open grassy stretch leads to the Nortons' House. We discovered the Owl very soon, sitting motionless about thirty feet up in a White Pine, and about ten feet from the main trunk. We watched him for some time through our glasses. He was a beautiful creature as he sat gazing wisely at us. At quarter past five, the dusk of evening falling, he launched off from his perch and flew some twenty or thirty yards alighting in a deciduous tree where he showed off finely against the clear sky. As we approached him, he flew again to another deciduous tree, and from there he struck across the grassy space referred to above alighting in a pine near the house. His flight was swift and noiseless, and gracefull. We searched for pellets and found one under the spot where we found him sitting. It was frozen and consisted of portions of small bird, probably English Sparrows. Dr. Faxon will try to identify them. Altogether it was a most interesting occasion. It was my first wild Barred Owl.

Last edit almost 2 years ago by Judy Warnement
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