Wednesday, February 27, 2019

Wednesday’s Wonderful Collection - Thomas Nuttall letters, SMC.13.2

Thomas Nuttall was a botanist and early American explorer. Born in England about 1786, Nuttall came to America in 1808. After explorations into northeastern Canada and up the Missouri River, Nuttall was asked by the American Philosophical Society to explore the Arkansas River and surrounding area. He embarked on the trip in 1818, returned in 1820, and was paid a total of three hundred dollars. He traveled to the newly-built Fort Smith, and used the fort as a base from which to explore further, collecting and sending at least one shipment of specimens back to his Philadelphian backers.
This collection contains typescripts of letters written by Thomas Nuttall describing the settlements of Arkansas Post, Little Rock, and Fort Smith, the geography and richness of the land, and the people who inhabited the area.
·         1818 December 4: Louisville, [Kentucky], to unknown (Reel MG00207)
·         1819 February 2: Arkansas Post, to unknown
·         1819 May 12: Fort Smith, Arkansas, to unknown