This section is from the book "The Gardener's Monthly And Horticulturist V22", by Thomas Meehan. See also: Four-Season Harvest: Organic Vegetables from Your Home Garden All Year Long.
The little stone building used in connection with a wheelwright's shop, in which the celebrated Wilson taught school, on the west bank of the Schuylkill near Gray's Ferry bridge, Philadelphia, on a recent ride by, we see has been torn down.
Through the kindness of Dr. Elliott Coues, of Washington, we have been favored with a drawing of this classical spot, and have made the fol lowing cut therefrom. The history of this great man will be increasingly studied as time wears away, and then the little spot where he worked so many hours will have a continued interest.
The country church-yard in which he desired to be buried, so that " the charms of wild nature might allure the birds to sing above his grave," is no longer a "country church," but closely pressed on all sides by brick and mortar, and is just in front of the steamship wharf, where passengers bid good by to America when on the start for Europe. He was a Scotchman, born at Paisley, July 6th, 1776, and landed at Newcastle, Delaware, on July 14th, 1794. From here he walked through dense woods to Philadelphia, and shot his first American bird, a red headed woodpecker, on the road. He first worked as a copper plate printer, but afterwards as a weaver at an old mill on the Pennypack Creek, near what is now known as Holmesburg, though a part of the great city of Philadelphia. He was a man of fine poetical temperament, though his poems do not take rank with the works of genius. He was the companion in ornithological work with the celebrated Wm. Bartram. Like many wonderful workers, he seldom had perfect health. He died of dysentery, on the 23d of August, 1813. Yucca Moths. - Mr. C. V. Kiley has discovered a new yucca moth which bores the stem of the Yucca, instead of the fruit, as in the case of the Pronuba yuccasella.
It very much resembles the older known species, but may be distin guished at sight by from one to five spots, forming a broad W on the primaries. He calls it Prodoxus decipiens.
Wilson's school house near gray's ferry.
In the course of an article relating to it in the June number of the American Entomologist he remarks on a paper read before the American Association at Saratoga by the editor of this magazine, and says " Mr. Meehan drew from his facts the inference that because Pronuba did not pollenize Yucca angustifolia. therefore it did aot pollenize Yucca filamentosa." We are very much surprised at this presentation of the case by Prof. Riley. No one knows better than the editor aforesaid that the Pronuba fertilizes the Yucca filamentosa; there is nothing whatever in the paper to warrant the charge that he drew any such inference, and how Mr. Riley derived that impression is incomprehensible.
The London Gardener's Chronicle did not get the same impression that Prof. Riley did, as the following paragraph shows: "A paper, by Mr. T. Meehan, on Fertilization of Yucca, which was read before the American Association for the advancement of science at Saratoga, and subsequently appeared in the ' North American Entomologist,' has recently been issued in form of a pamphlet. It contains a resume of the facts that have been observed in reference to this subject, and Mr. Meehan states, as the result of his investigation, that while Yucca filamentosa is undoubtedly fertilized by the Yucca moth (Pronuba yuccasella), Yucca angustifolia is not visited by that insect at all, and yet produces perfect seeds. It appears, however, necessary that it should be fertilized artificially or by insect aid".