Witness Tree Project: Lindenwald

  • This box was made to commemorate the little-known interaction had between Martin Van Buren and the son of one of his farm hands young John Ward Cooney, they went on a fishing trip together, and ran into a large turtle, that the then retired president proceeded to prod with his newly bought ten dollar fishing rod.  The turtle reponded by latching onto the rod and refusing to let go. Van Buren very plainly did not want to see the creature killed for the sake of his rod, so instead he asked the boy to cut off as little of the rod as he could to leave the turtle be.  He cut off roughly six inches of the rod, and they continued on.  
  • E.H. Banyes was a New Hampshire Native in the later 19th Century who had a vision of the American Bison taking refuge in the quickly growing economy at the time.  He tried (and succeeded) in domesticating the bison and using them as draft animals.  Although his enthusiasm for the Bison's economic purposes was unmet, the spirit of western expansion can in some ways be characterized by the publics blatant rejection of the bison.  The Bison instead found themselves being used to topple the foundation of many Native American's economies.  Their destruction made Native Americans reliant on European Economies.