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Buzzings from BeeLines

October 17, 2012
By Marybelle Beigh - Westfield Historian ( , Westfield Republican / Mayville Sentinel News

First, some date and other number typos have been noted.

In the BeeLines about "Looking for Grape Belt National Bank, Westfield N.Y., Memorabilia" published in the July 5, 2012 Westfield Republican, the sharp eyes of the Concord Grape Belt historian John Slater noted two dates in the first paragraph that are typographical errors. In the first sentence it should read, "the Bank of Westfield, a state bank, was opened on May 25, 1848, [not 1948] by Sextus H. Hungerford." And in the next sentence, it should read, "By 1864, [not 1964], the First National Bank of Westfield was organized."

Westfield Historian Marybelle Beigh apologizes for the errors, and pleads three "reasons" - the most likely one being that having typed 19XX for the first 60 years of her life, the muscle memory took over, but the second and third excuses being poor eyesight due to cataracts and seeing what one expects to see when proof-reading.

Article Photos

Submitted photo
This photo postcard identifies the location as Westfield in handwriting on the back, however some research by the Westfield Historian questions this identification.

Another number error, discovered in the Aug. 9, 2012 BeeLines about "Grape Belt National Bank Finds" is an incorrect address for Time Warner, which should be 15-17 E. Main, not 13 E. Main.

Additional information and requests for more regarding paw-paws in this area

Several more locations of paw-paw trees, besides Jay Stratton's farm are:

Fact Box

The office of the Westfield Historian is located at 117 Union Street, in the small green building on the north side of driveway. Office hours are Monday through Friday, 9 to 11 a.m., or by appointment. The Westfield Historian phone number is 326-2457, and the email mail address is

1. Barcelona - two or more on the fishing trail along Chautauqua Creek between Route 5 and the outlet of the creek in the area known as Peacock Grove;

2. Forest Park - at least two known wild paw-paw trees; and

3. Ripley Gorge - Gage's Gulf, where hunters have seen paw-paw trees within the past 10 years or so.

If readers know of other locations, contact the Westfield Historian, and thank you.

Lore about paw-paws and recipes have been requested, especially regarding Native American use of them.

Since the paw-paw fruit is quite high in protein content, it was dried into "fingers" for eating when on the trail or on hunting expeditions. According to some sources, the Iroquois added paw-paw flesh to their steamed corn bread.

The paw-paw fruit contains yeast on the skins that can be used to ferment the fruit to produce alcohol when mashed and left for a period of time. Stratton has heard this becomes Native American "medicine," but he requests more documented information if possible. Again, the Westfield Historian is accepting more reader feedback about Native American uses of paw-paws, with many thanks for the input.

Feedback about the mystery postcard has been sparse

Locations suggested are North East Pa., Westfield, Pa., and Palmyra N.Y. Any photos that could verify a location are requested, thanks.



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