Entry Detail

yellow poplar, tulip tree, white poplar

Entry Type:  
Scientific Name:  
Common Name:  
yellow poplar, tulip tree, white poplar
Myaamia Name:  
Harvest Seasons:  
Winter, Summer, Fall, Spring
Beech-Maple Forest, Oak Forest including Oak-Hickory, Beech-Oak-Maple Mixed Mesophytic, Deciduous Swamp no coniferous domts.

Media not available.
Myaamia Archival Sources  
Reference Source Reference Type Archival Data Comments
Filson, J. 1793 Use - Customs 

A poplar may have been the "tree of peace" mentioned by a Piankeshaw Chief in a meeting with Thomas Dalton in 1784, receiving a peace belt from the white men and hoping to reciprocate and form a more peaceful relationship. "We thus plant the tree of peace, that God may spread branches, so that we call all be secured from bad weather".

Pease, T. C. and R. C. Werner 1934 Use - Technology 

Wood used as a fishing pole. "I do not doubt that there are some [carp] even bigger [than 16 inches between the eyes], for one day a soldier of the garrison at that time among the Illinois, having gone fishing one night in a canoe, and having put out a big rock to anchor it, one of these brills [carp], finding itself caught on the hook, made such powerful efforts that it carried away the canoe, the rock, and the man. The soldier, seeing this, exerted all his strength and was pulling it toward him when, unhappily, the line broke. It was of whitewood bark, twisted thicker than one's thumb" ("je ne doute point qu'il n'y en aye meme de plus grosses, puis qu'un jour un soldat de la Garnison, qui etoit pour lors aux Illinois etant alle une nuit a cette pesche avec une pirogue et ayant mis une grosse Roche pour l'ancrer, une de ces Barbues se s'entant prise a l'amecon fit de si grands Efforts qu'elle ntraina la pirogue La Roche et L'homme a elle ce que le soldat voyant employa toutes ses forces Et l'attiroit a luy dans le temps que malheureusement la Corde Cassa, elle etoit d'ecorce de Bois blanc, traissee plus grosse que le poulce"). 

Aatotankiki myaamiaki 1998-2006 Use - Customs 

A yellow poplar was planted at the opening to a Miami Nation art exhibit at the Miami University Art Museum to honor Chief Leonard of the Miami Tribe of Oklahoma.

Kinietz, V. 1938 Use - Customs 

The white poplar tree was planted as a tree of peace.  "I have repeatedly questioned Le Gros [a Miami man, possibly the descendant of Chief Le Grosse, chief during the late 1600s, for which the village of Le Gros, along the Wabash, was named] about "trees of peace", . . . He says he never heard before that the Indians, in any instance, marked the boundaries of their hunting lands. "Yet," continues he, "Awaandeeoanee Tauwaunee (a peace tree) was once planted upon the St. Joseph’s, by the Chippeways, Ottawas, Potawatamies and Miamies. It was a white poplar. Under its branches a grand council was held, at which a general method of government was agreed upon for the respective nations, and to that effect certain fundamental laws were passed, which have been since immutable. There, a general alliance, offensive and defensive, was made, and although the tree be now physically dead, it yet lives green in the hearts of the Indians." I regret that Le Gros is unable to furnish me with the particulars of this very interesting tradition."

Trowbridge interviewed a man named Le Gros who was thought to be a descendant of Chief Le Grosse, who was chief of the Miamis during the late 1600s. – Michael Gonella
Miami Tribe of Oklahoma Archives Use - Technology 

One of the original Miami allotment houses, the Drake House (Miami, Oklahoma) is sided with yellow poplar lapping, most likely from a local source.

Burns, N.L. 1938 Use - Technology 

Young shoots of hackberry, elm and poplar fed to livestock during hard times.

Gonella, M.P 2003-2006 Related Info 

Cultural use references referring to white poplar indicated the yellow poplar (Liriodendron tulipifera), as deduced by fact that the yellow poplar has been called white poplar because of its light and easily worked wood, and because the introduced white poplar (Populus alba) was not introduced until 1748, nor widespread before the 19th century, whereas traditions relating to peace were probably established long before this time.    

Dunn, J.P. ca. 1900 Related Info 

"oza'ndia poplar, liriodendron"

Gatschet, A.S. ca. 1895 Related Info 

"mal'lusandia, white poplar"

Botanical Sources  
Reference Source Reference Type Data Comments
Gleason, H.A. and Cronquist, A. 1991 Habitat 

Occurs in rich woods in eastern Myaamia lands.

Yellow poplar was also known as white poplar, because of its light and easily worked wood. – Michael Gonella
Small, J.K. 1903 Habitat 

Occurs in swamps.

Related Sources  
Reference Source Reference Type Data Comments
Trowbridge, C. 1824-5  

"onngzandeear, poplar"

Gatschet, A.S. ca. 1895  

"uzandiaxkwi, oonseentiaahkwi, or poplar"