Category Archives: Helen Fitch Parker

I failed to find the Poweshiek Skipper (but my trip was still a success)

I have a particular obsession with a butterfly that I have never seen (at least in the adult stage).  Oarisma poweshiek was discovered in Grinnell, Iowa and described by Henry Parker in 1870.  Or maybe his wife discovered it–but that … Continue reading

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Arthur’s Aquarium

I have written a number of entries that I call “The History of the Butterfly” on this blog, and on my other website.  Oarisma poweshiek, the Poweshiek skipper, is an endangered butterfly that was discovered in Grinnell, Iowa, and described … Continue reading

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One Reason the List Was Published

In 1850, Helen Fitch (later Helen Fitch Parker) tried to publish a description of a new species of snail by having her future Brother-in-Law present it as a paper before the American Association for the Advancement of Science.  Louis Agassiz … Continue reading

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History of the Butterfly, Part 103: Where are the Oarisma Poweshiek Type Specimens?

Or:  What happens to a butterfly in a tornado? Presumably most of the specimens of Oarisma poweshiek (then called Hesperia powesheik) that Henry and Helen Parker collected were deposited in a major museum, specifically the largest museum west of the Mississippi … Continue reading

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History of the Butterfly, Part 60: Henry Speaks on Race

December 28, 1862 was in the middle of the American Civil War.  It was about two years after the South seceded from the Union, and 4 days before President Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation.  On that date in history, the … Continue reading

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History of the Butterfly, Part 46: Poweshiek and the Parkers

Did Poweshiek have a connection to the people (Henry and Helen Parker) who discovered and named a butterfly after him? The Parkers lived in Poweshiek County.  Poweshiek was probably still very much a character in the minds of the early … Continue reading

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History of the Butterfly, Part 42: More about Helen Parker

If you have been following this blog, you know that the History of the Butterfly is about events related to Oarisma poweshiek, the Poweshiek Skipper.  The description of the butterfly was published under Henry Webster Parker’s name, but I have suggested … Continue reading

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History of the Butterfly, Part 41: Helen’s Life and a New Mystery

Last Friday I went to the third floor of The University of Iowa’s Main Library, and visited the “Iowa Women’s Archives”.   I was hoping to find some information about Helen Eliza Fitch Parker there.  The archives of the Bradley Family listed … Continue reading

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Correction

I need to make a correction to my November 8th post.  The snail description was made by Samuel J. Parker–Not Helen’s future Father-in-Law, but her future Brother-in-Law.  Samuel J. Parker became a physican and to my knowledge never published anything … Continue reading

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History of the Butterfly, Part 39: Malacological Smackdown, Part 2

So Samuel Parker decided he had discovered a new species of snail and wrote up a scientific description of it.  However, he had not reviewed the other species to see if there already was one like it.  The crowd snickered … Continue reading

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