Adventures in Mackinac
On this day, a 24-year-old botanist named Thomas Nuttal jumped in a birch bark canoe with Aaron Greeley, the deputy surveyor of the territory of Michigan, and they paddled to Mackinac Island arriving two weeks later on August 12.
Thomas spent several days on Mackinac - He was the first real botanist to explore the flora of Michigan, and indeed, of Mackinac Island. Thomas immediately set about collecting and writing detailed accounts of the flora he discovered. He documented about sixty species - about twenty were previously unknown. One of the new Mackinac discoveries was the dwarf lake iris (Iris lucustris), which became the state wildflower of Michigan.