NATCHITOCHES – The Cammie G. Henry Research Center at Northwestern State University will host a reception to share information about the recovery process that has taken place since Briarwood Nature Preserve was struck by an EF1 tornado on May 8. The reception will be from 4-7 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 14 on the third floor of NSU’s Eugene P. Watson Memorial Library.
The May tornado caused extensive property damage at Briarwood, birthplace and home of the late writer and naturalist Caroline Dormon. Major efforts have been taken to begin the repair and recovery process and the public’s help is still needed. Photographs of the recovery will be on display and members of the Caroline Dormon Foundation will be on hand to share more information as they seek help in restoring the southern landmark and preserving Dormon’s work. Photographs of Dormon and her arkwork will also be on exhibit.
Briarwood is located near Saline. The Dormon Foundation maintain the area, carrying on the Dormon’s work of preserving native flora and educating the public about the natural forest ecosystem of Louisiana. The preserve is temporarily closed while preservationists work to repair trails and buildings damaged last spring. Among the surviving trees is “Grandpappy,” a longleaf pine recently measured and named Louisiana’s new state champion longleaf pine.
The Cammie G. Research Center holds the Caroline Dormon Collection that includes correspondence, photographs, drawings, writings and maps relating to Dormon’s work in establishing Kisatchie National Forest, identifying Spanish Explorer Hernando DeSoto’s route when she worked with the DeSoto Commission, chronicling and identifying irises, wild flowers, plants and trees and her research with Louisiana Native Americans. The Cammie G. Henry Research Center also holds materials related to Caroline Dormon in the Melrose and Federal Writer’s Collections.