Great Plains Studies, Center for


Date of this Version

Fall 1999


Published in Great Plains Research 9: (Fall 1999). Copyright © 1999 The Center for Great Plains Studies, University of Nebraska–Lincoln. Used by permission.


This volume continues the series edited by Gary E. Moulton and is certainly its capstone publication, including as it does a portion of the scientific results of that amazing expedition. The strengths of the volume are great indeed. Foremost is the presentation of a photographic representation of the extant herbarium collected on the Expedition. Moreover, the careful review of the historical meanderings of the herbarium specimens from their gathering to their present sites provides real insight into botanical history. That any of the specimens survived to contemporary times is a wonder, demonstrating again the fragmentary nature of early collections upon which great interpretations were and continue to be based. The specimens, despite their fragmentary nature or state of preservation, evidence the devotion of their collectors and set the standard followed on other expeditions of exploration, especially of the vast lands of the American West.