Friday, July 10, 2009

Indian Pipe and Betty's Neck

While there are few historical resources at Betty's Neck to inform visitors of its rich past and deeply-rooted connection with local Native American history and culture, there is nonetheless a perhaps subtle reminder of the area's past in the small and delicate plant known as Indian Pipe which can be found at this time of year working its way through leaf litter on the forest floor. This is rather an unpleasant plant for its lack of chlorophyll, its waxy appearance, ashen color, clammy feel and the fact that it turns black soon after being picked. For this reason, its alternate name is corpse plant. It feeds off decayed vegetation on the forest floor. Nonetheless, its appearance does resemble the clay elbow pipes made by Native Americans for smoking tobacco and its name is a reminder of the original occupants of Betty's Neck.

Indian Pipe (Monotropa uniflora) photographed at Betty's Neck by Michael J. Maddigan, July 10, 2009


Larry said...

The New England Magazine Volume 0009 Issue 5 (January 1891)
A descendant of Massasoit


Donna said...

I was recently introduced to the beauty that is Bettys Neck. I would blove to. Have as much history about as possible do know where I can find this info like this.

Mike said...

Unfortunately there currently is little published historical information on Betty's Neck, either of its native inhabitants or of the subsequent uses to which the land was put. Your best bet, however, is to start with the Lakeville Public Library which has a good historical collection. You can visit their website by clicking on the link in the right sidebar. To discover the natural history of the area, the best bet is to grab a good field guide and hit the trails with a notebook and camera. Either way, you can discover (and enjoy) much about Betty's Neck which is a wonderful resource for the community.

Anonymous said...

When I went to Fred's barber shop on main street in Lakeville with my son, I struck up a conversation with a gent whose family grew up on she shoreline near Betty's Neck. He remembers digging up Native American pottery with his sibling as a child. Fred knew him well so you could speak with him to get in touch.

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