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Halesia carolina is an understory tree that is native from West Virginia south to Florida and west to eastern Texas. It was named after Stephen Hale, 1677-1761 author of a famous work Vegetable Statics. Mountain Silverbell, also known as Carolina Silverbell, was introduced into Great Britain in 1756 and was called Snowdrop or Silverbell Tree. In a letter to John W. Eppes dated March 6, 1817, Thomas Jefferson indicated ..."P.S. a Halesia sent. also purple and white figs."