Regarding the Lincoln's Sparrow, it wasn't actually named after the U.S.
President, but Audubon's friend Thomas Lincoln. From
"John James Audubon named the Lincoln's Sparrow after his travel
companion Thomas Lincoln, who accompanied him on an expedition to the
coast of Labrador. The expedition found the sparrow in a valley in
Natashquan, Quebec, and Mr. Lincoln was the only person who managed to
bring back a specimen for study."
Wikipedia adds that Audubon dubbed the bird "Tom's Finch" in his
I just learned all this last week when I looked it up after spotting a
Lincoln's Sparrow in the yard for the first time.
On 10/2/20 11:11 AM, Ted Levin wrote:
> 7:03 a.m. 46 degrees, wind W 0 mph; steady rain, good morning to stay in
> bed, but Shadowfax had diarrhea while the sun was somewhere above the
> western Atlantic. Sky: twin ribbons of ground fog above both branches of
> the Ompompanoosuc, fogless elsewhere; three black crows, silent, beneath a
> gray, leaky sky. Permanent streams: forty-eight hours out from the deluge;
> much-reduced flow. Wetlands: color saturation on the theme of brown, hints
> of green; red and orange across the marsh, last embers of autumn. Pond:
> concentric circles and coruscating sparkles; leaves and pine needles pile
> into the southeast cove. Thronged with expanding and interlocking ripples,
> the surface of the pond reminds me, one more time, *Inclement weather bears
> unexpected gifts.*
> *Color *short-lived, more memory than substance, six weeks squeezed into
> two. Brown, the new orange. Some maples, a blend of both brown and orange,
> like a vestment of monarch butterflies, shed leaves, shed color, shed
> water, shed the condensation of a season.
> In the alders, a fleeting glimpse of a Lincoln sparrow, a sulky bird with a
> finely streaked buffy breast, named for the president who preserved the
> union and abolished slavery. The name *Lincoln sparrow* is not likely to
> change, ever. In August, the American Ornithological Union (AOU) renamed
> McCown's longspur, a plain-colored, grassland relative of the cedar
> waxwing, *thick-billed longspur*. The AOU acknowledged that John P. McCown,
> a bird collector and amateur ornithologist, had also been a Confederate
> Publicly, the National Audubon Society, the American Museum of Natural
> History, and the Sierra Club grapple with the gloom of their own respective
> heroes: John James Audubon, Theodore Roosevelt, John Muir. If they were
> alive today and behaved as they did in their own lifetimes, Audubon,
> Roosevelt, and Muir would questionably be labeled *white supremacists*.
> They were men of their times, not ours. We're products of our times, not
> I certainly don't condone their anti-social behavior and wretched beliefs .
> . . but, as a lifelong naturalist, whose boyhood was unburdened by things
> that hopped and crawled and flew, I can't forget their contributions to the
> understanding, the interpretation, the protection of the land that I love.
> If Roosevelt had not acceded to the White House, in 1901, we wouldn't be
> rallying against President Trump's endorsement of industrial tourism in
> Grand Canyon National Park . . . there would be *no* Grand Canyon.