|THE HERBARIUM OF SMITH COLLEGE|
| Near the close of World War I, a Mr. Frederick W. Grigg collected spccimens of the remarkable goldenclub, Orontium aquaticunm
(Figure 1), a member of the largely tropical plant family Araceae, from a freshwater pond in an oak-beech forest behind the dunes near Provincetown, Massachusetts. Mr. Grigg, at that time a bachelor of forty-five years, near-sighted with thick-lensed glasses and a sandy mustache, had already alarmed Cape Cod residents by consulting government maps and observing the wireless station through binoculars. The conductor of the train returning to Boston, informed of these sinister activities, denounced the amateur botanist to a naval officer aboard. Approaching Mr. Grigg, then gazing through opera glasses out the window, the officer demanded an explanation. Grigg replied that he had been on the Cape in search of "a certain flower" and then proceeded to deride the U. S. Naval Service, concluding that he had nothing more to say to "half-fed sailors." After a brief struggle, the officer and three other men seized, handcuffed, and searched Mr. Grigg, finding maps, charts, a notebook with mysterious notations, and a "botanist's outfit" in his possession.
News that a suspect had been apprehended on the train raced ahead to Boston, and at the South Street Station a crowd of several hundred persons gathered for a look at the prisoner. Grigg alighted with head erect and, in the station, demanded that officials contact M. L. Fernald, the well-known Harvard botanist. Professor Fernald stood as a character witness of sorts, identifying the notations as probably memoranda of the Latin names of plants, and after an examination before the provost marshal on Commonwealth pier, Mr. Grigg was released from custody. The plants he collected that day, now faded and brittle, have made their way, with newspaper clippings detailing Mr. Grigg's adventure, to our collection in the Herbarium of Smith College. The goldenelub now occurs at or near its northernmost point of distribution on Cape Cod and our specimens, obtained that fateful June, serve to document its presence there more than fifty years ago. They, with nearly fifty thousand other pressed and mounted specimens of plants, provide invaluable tools for study and scientific research at the College.
By definition a herbarium is an assemblage of pressed and dried specimens of plants as well as the room, building, or institution where such an assemblage