Twas built among the merry boys who wield the plough and spade,
Where the log cabins stand, in the bonnie buckeye shade.
Oh what, tell me what is to be your cabin’s fate?
We’ll wheel it to the capital and place it there elate,
for a token and a sign of the bonnie Buckeye state.
--William Henry Harrison's campaign song
Yesterday, when talking about the contents of my handbag, I was surprised some gentle readers did not know what a "buckeye" was. I took it for granted, living in Ohio, that everyone was familiar with the buckeye, the state tree of Ohio. My Hoosier great-grandfather, Glenn Hanna, first introduced me to the buckeye as a little girl, when he gave me one and told me to keep it tucked in my coat pocket for luck.
The common name “buckeye” was derived from the Native Americans who noticed that the glossy, chestnut-brown seeds with the lighter circular center looked like the eye of a buck deer. Native Americans roasted, peeled and mashed the buckeye nut, which they called “Hetuck,” into a nutritional meal. (Okay, my Cherokee DNA might be begging for a sample, but I'm a bit reluctant.)
Early explorers carried the rare and curious buckeye to the east and reported the Aesculus glabra’s prized medicinal properties and talismanic attribute of wisdom. The extracts from the inner bark of the nut has been used in cerebro-spinal treatments. Some believe that the buckeye relieves rheumatism pain and provides good fortune when carried in pockets or worn as an amulet around the neck. The mysterious nut was used as a general cure-all for generations.
Buckeye, as used as the nickname of The Ohio State University sports teams, was adopted officially by the school as its nickname in 1950, and came to be applied to any graduate of the university. The buckeye nuts can also be dried and strung onto necklaces, particularly popular among Ohio State fans.
1 1/4 cup peanut butter
4 Tablespoons butter
melted chocolate for dipping
Combine powdered sugar with
peanut butter and butter.
Mix together well.
Roll mixture into 1 inch balls and insert a tooth pick for dunking into melted chocolate. Set chocolate coated balls on wax paper to set. By not having the candy completely covered in chocolate, makes end result looks like a buckeye nut.
Speaking of local candy, I won a box of heavenly maple sugar leaves made by Putnam's Sugarhouse in Charlestown, NH, on Suki's lovely blog, Paint, Poems and Ponderings. Thank you, Suki!
buckeye candy photo borrowed from Google images