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April 5, 2004 at 7:47 pm #925
hello All, well I did not get the date for this event but…
Recentlythe USDA resource conservation center in eatonton Ga is restablishing the trail of tears corn back to the eastern Cherokee people this is the from the original corn seed taken to oklahoma in 1838, and is going back to the NE Ga cherokee of Ga. larry Coburn # 706 485-2341.April 5, 2004 at 7:47 pm #9415
Just curious, Tom…I purchased a packet of corn seeds from a vendor….and it is supposed to be the Trail of Tears corn…is this the same thing or something different? BeckyApril 5, 2004 at 7:47 pm #9416
Hey Becky well I do not know, what I was told is that this variety is a very rare form of purple and white dent corn that is good flour and hominy corn , and stands between 12-18 feet high.
I’d like to know more about what you have though.
I think that this corn and other forms grown only in or by secluded communities will one day be valued as a parent stock, varieties of everything is getting so gmo-ed we not sure just what we are getting any more.
I have friends with very old squash varieties that were only grown in and on the Sioux reserves in the Dakotas, a star shaped form., Also Buck once mentioned that he had a Saponi “form” of corn.
For the green thumbs in the bunch we should maybe look at this, a feast of very old traditional foods at a gathering would be a very special event.
TomApril 5, 2004 at 7:47 pm #9417
Sorry, Tom, did not get a chance to finish describing this to you. This corn is blue and shaped like a teardrop. And the vendor that I got it from had several packets..but kinda put back, if you know what I mean. I was digging through other articles that they had on a table and found it…was not marked, and I asked about it. I had intended to use part of it for some jewelry…but now am curious about trying to plant it and see what happens. I would love to help prepare an old time feast….maybe June 2005..don’t think we can raise it in time for this year. Let me know if you decide to do this..would be glad to make Three Sisters Soup…:)April 5, 2004 at 7:47 pm #9424
Hello Becky, well Iam not 100% sure about this corn I have to call the USDA and get some seed, it is a dent variety flour corn from what I had seen it was mainly purple w/ some white isolated kernals mixed in.
I did a small search on the web and found a trail of tears beans, aswell their is many other types of Native American crop seed out there, I want to try and plant a small garden with some select seed, but I have to do more research.
I would like to see more gardeners take this approach since diet can be traced by descent and blood type, perhaps growing and consuming what we our families may have had might make for healthier people.
one of the reasons that Iam so interested in the trail of tears
corn is my Mom used to
tll me that her parents grew a coloured corn like the ornamental varieties and that her familiy used to it it and she said i was very good, but since grandad was in Ontario during ww11 he may have found the corn there since the Ontario tribal people use a coloured corn for food.
Any way your use of corn in jewellery sounds really neat I hope that it works out for you.April 5, 2004 at 7:47 pm #9427
One thing I learned about corn — it doesn’t go well in too small a garden. It takes a lot of room. I tried to grow some one year and these nasty bugs got into the ears and turned the tops of them into mush. The soil down here on the coastal plain is very sandy, not the rich black dirt in Illlinois. I’ve never had corn that comes near Illinois corn.
Perhaps an old variety that was grown by the Tuscarora would taste better. Silver queen grows mediocre here.April 5, 2004 at 7:47 pm #9428
Corn needs at least 4 rows to tassle and pollinate. And as far as the bugs…they were probably Japanese beetles…which can be solved by either picking them off and killing them, putting a drop of mineral oil on the end of the ear…or allowing a certain weed to grow beside the corn…we did the latter and they ate the weed, not the corn. Silver queen mixed with Golden King makes a fantasic mixed corn…sweet and the kernels just pop when you bite it. Tom, I am very interested in trying to grow the native seeds…and any information you might have would be most welcome. Thanks, BeckyApril 5, 2004 at 7:47 pm #9430
hello this year Iam going to try and grow a garden with some trail of tears corn and beans as well as a native variety of squash either Mandan or a type of Lakota acorn.
Aswell I want to grow the usual varieties but I can’t get away from the Anasazi beans, if you look at some gov. web sites for info on food quality etc it helps to make a good choice.
I live high up on the northern plains and in the lower sub-arctic area so we get any kind of weather and trying to grow a southern crop is not easy, but a friend of mine once sent some gourd seeds and after giving them to some friends years latter they still have seed but it came about from one or 2 fruit that lived long enough to acclimate.
Most folks up here think that gourds are these ugly little multi coloured things and don’t realize that the utility gourds even exist.
The one very interesting thing about trail of tears corn is that it’s nearset genetic releative is from the highlands of Mexico.
All for now TomApril 5, 2004 at 7:47 pm #9448
Hey All, well Iam still researching heirloom seeds. I have found a variety of beans from the Six Nations in Ontario. These were once grown there I have no idea if they still are , but of interest they are called ” Tutelo beans” and were probably taken there by the Tutelos way back when.
For those of you near the old haunts you may want to try and grow these they are available from http://www.ecogenesis.ca a seed co. in Toronto Ontario. they also have some other nice varieties.
Also another web site that is the best that you can find is “Seeds of Diversity”, a gene back of seeds and many of the listings have not been seen for many many years,Lakota squash, etc is either rare or extinct, for those of you that are “green thumbers” you need to look at this site it is really very amazing what they have and list , including what is not kept by many of the Canada or USA gene banks.
TomApril 5, 2004 at 7:47 pm #9449
Tutelo beans! That’s great. I’ll order some, and see if my friend, Sun, can raise them on his organic farm in Boydton, VA. That’s ten miles from where Occanceechi, Saponi and Tutelo Islands were in the 17th century.April 5, 2004 at 7:47 pm #9450
Well I thought that you’d like that, I hope that we can get a good start of these items in our individual gardens and see what takes off where.
The nice thing is , is that many of the old seed houses have very rare and beautiful looking food seed.
There is a Mandan/ Hidatsa shield bean that is amazing to see.
Since many of those Vilage tribes were originally from the south their sources are pretty obvious, I’d say that some of these varieties go back to very early Mound cultures.
Really very exciting when you consider the times.
All the best Tom
ps, also look to seed saver exchange, WI, they have moon and stars water melon, really quite unique.April 5, 2004 at 7:47 pm #9461
Hey Linda, if you folks start raising these crops, you may want to look for “Buffalos Bird Womans garden”, with several authors and printings out there you’ll be sure to find one.
She was born into a high up Hidatsa (souian ) family about 1839 and was Gilbert Wilsons main informent, for his study that ended in the early 1900s.
He described Buffalo Bird Womans gardening methods and the culture that surrounds native American gardening, songs, prayers, etc. All the Best , TomApril 5, 2004 at 7:47 pm #9471
If any one is looking for Tuscarora corn, it is also called Iroquois white corn and is for sale at Little Pine’sNative heritage place or
http://www.littlepinecrafts.com , also there is several bean varieties out there and some good corn types aswell.
Some very old types and very rare at Museum of the fur trade in Chadron Nebraska.April 5, 2004 at 7:47 pm #9473
There are instructions on that Little Pine site with the “Three Sisters” seeds, on how to plant the three together. I tried it one year and it didn’t work, but I didn’t know how to stagger the planting times so they would all grow together.
What I’d really like to know is, what kind of gourds were being grown hear. William Byrd in 1723 reported that the Fort Christanna Indians made drums from gourds. I’ve made some with large birdhouse gourds, but I wonder what they actually used.April 5, 2004 at 7:47 pm #9483
Hello Linda, well Iam not real sure, but a friend of mine once sent some seed to the Powhattans that were of the giant variety and he said that the gourds flourished.
You may want to check if some of those gourds are still up there, if you look at the early drawings there is one image of a lady carrying a water gourd or something it is very large.
The Fort Christanna site may have preserved some seed if you check into it, they may indicate what type of gourd was there if a sample has survived.
What source book are you reading, perhaps I can get a copy up here.
I’ll check for a source, also I have seen gourds from a farm in Ga that were huge, the lady there only grew gourds and she had them by the hay wagon full, like a small semi trailer.
I would suspect that many types of gourds were grown there, but what type for a drum, it may not have been very big as water drums can be quite small, but ask around and compare what is known of pottery drums, but don’t confuse the oven s for drums, since a pottery bowl with pegs was also used as an oven, I think that the burning of the oven over use would tell you the difference.
These “ovens” were soaked in water and inverted over a hot rock and then covered with coals, the bread inside was said to be as good as any in France, or elsewhere.
When planting those 3 crops together I would not put all 3 types of seeds in the same divot, since all three can grow together, they may not want to become root bound, I’d space the out and plant in a hill. Also what works in the north may not work in the south, find an oldtime gardener that has lived in your area for a long time and ask, usually someone with expierence is much better than hoofing it alone. All the best
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