"Frederick F. Frye"

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The Poca Post is pleased to announce a commemorative issue honoring Mr. Frederick Ferrell Frye, ornithologist.

Mr. Frye was born in 1829 near Buffalo-on-the-Poca to a well-to-do farming family.  Since Frederick was of a sensitive and thoughtful nature, he was sent to Marshall College for his education.  While there he discovered the works of John James Audubon, and immediately decided to become an ornithologist.  Upon his graduation in 1851 he traveled to the Hudson River area to meet Mr. Audubon.  However, Mr.  Audubon died the day before Frye's arrival.

Undiscouraged, he stayed in the area and studied with James Audubon's son, Victor.  These studies lasted for a period of three years, at which time Frye returned to his family's home on the Poca River.

Within a short time his astute eye and great dedication were rewarded by the sighting of a previously unidentified bird.  He called this bird the "Yellow Collared Flycatcher."  

Of course, the activity of bird-watching was frowned upon by the people of his community.  As a result, the bird was dubbed the "Yellow Bellied Frye Catcher" by members of the community.  To this day, the bird, though increasingly rare, is referred to on the Poca River as the "Frye Catcher."  Nevertheless, Frederick F. Frye holds the distinction of being the only person on the Poca  River to have identified a new species of bird.

The stamp honoring Mr. Frye was issued on 23 August, 2002 in a pane of 16 stamps in the denomination of 43 poca units.


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