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  #1  
Old 12-14-2005, 08:39 PM
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Default The Star in the Cottonwood Tree

Inside each cottonwood branch is a little star. If you cut a 3/4" branch from a cottonwood tree with a saw, you will find a little star in the center of that branch. According to Native American legend, a curious little star once hid in the cottonwood tree so it could always be near the people on Earth and listen to their beautiful music, the laughter and the kind words they say to one another.

I always find that some of the Native stories are quite interesting. They talk about where I grew up as a boy in Washburn, ND which is about seven miles down the Missouri River from Ft. Mandan. For you history buffs, this is where Lewis and Clark spent their first winter on their journey. The cottonwoods provided them with a fort and firewood and large logs for their dugout canoes that the Mandan and Hidatsa people helped them build. The trees offered places to hunt and fish for food. The young branches and tender bark provided feed for the horse and medicine for the people. The branches from the cottonwoods were used for fires that kept them warm and cooked their food.

I find it quite interesting that today there is still a small grove just south of Washburn that has some 250 to 350 year old cottonwood trees in it. These trees were growing at the time that Lewis and Clark with in North Dakota. I do gather bark out in that general area occasionally. If you're ever out that way, make sure to stop at the Lewis and Clark Interpretive Center in Washburn and you will see a large cottonwood log canoe and it has rather large bark on the unfinished portions of it.

On Lewis and Clark's journey West, they also encountered the Yellowstone River in Montana and explored that. There's alot of cottonwood in that area as well. It's my opinion that the cottonwoods contributed much to the success of the expedition.

Rick Jensen a.k.a. Bark Boy
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Old 12-15-2005, 12:32 PM
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Default Re: The Star in the Cottonwood Tree

Very nice read.
Thanks,
Thor
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Old 12-16-2005, 06:54 PM
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Default Re: The Star in the Cottonwood Tree

Hi Rick, I agree a very nice read indeed. Very near my home is a large stand of cottonwood trees. I've been meaning to go gleen some fallen braches to carve woodspirits. The Hopi and Navajo here in Arizona create Kachinas from the cottonwood root.
Merry Christmas,
Kathy
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Old 12-17-2005, 08:04 PM
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Default Re: The Star in the Cottonwood Tree

Test for posting
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Old 12-17-2005, 08:29 PM
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Default Re: The Star in the Cottonwood Tree

Rick Jensen -- I remember those North Dakota days. Weren't they BEFORE Lewis and Clark? I learned to carve in North Dakota.

Nancy Goff
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Old 12-17-2005, 08:42 PM
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Default Re: The Star in the Cottonwood Tree

test..... hummm must be your settings Kathy, I didn't have any trouble posting here?
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Old 12-18-2005, 03:28 AM
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Default Re: The Star in the Cottonwood Tree

Thank you for sharing that! Cottonwood Bark is quickly becoming one of my favourites to carve.
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