The Town of Starks passed a resolution at the 2017 March Town Meeting to celebrate Indigenous People’s Day in place of Columbus Day. The vote was almost unanimous! In recognition of that action, we at Hyltun Farm have begun growing a flint corn variety that descends from the corn that was planted by the Abenaki peoples who inhabited our area. The seeds from the corn we grow will be used to plant more of this type of corn to make it a viable supply for food. Flint corn is amazingly – the cornbread, polenta and other corn products are far better than what you might purchase at the local supermarkets. It also mature in 55 days, and grows very well in our climate.
The corn we planted was done in combination with climbing beans and squash and pumpkins, which makes it a “Three Sisters Garden”, of sorts. Some native folks have planted a more authentic “Three Sisters Garden” on another farm in Starks, in a location along the Sandy River where these crops were planted for hundreds of years (if not longer) before the settlers arrived.
We’re looking forward to learning more about the Abenakis and others who inhabited this area long before the white colonist arrived.