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Meet the American who first planted apples in the colonies: William Blaxton, eccentric settler

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This fall, tip your basket to William Blaxton when you pluck a plump apple from a tree, bob for apples on Halloween or cherish your grandmother's amazing apple pie on Thanksgiving.

Reverend Blaxton, among other claims to fame, planted the first seeds that would fuel a pioneering nation and give apples an image of all-American wholesomeness.

A bookish, eccentric loner, the early English settler nurtured what historians believe were the first apple orchards in what's now the U.S.

in present-day Boston in the 1620s. His name Blaxton is often modernized as Blackstone. A true pioneer, he settled Boston five years before the Puritans and Rhode Island a year before Roger Williams.  "There may be historical characters who did more than he did for apples in America, but he was certainly the first — and at least the first known — to bring this exotic crop to our shores," said John Bunker, an American apple expert, grower and author.  "That’s a pretty awesome legacy," added the New England apple enthusiast, who spoke to Fox News Digital this week while "tracking down ancient trees" in the woods of rural Maine.

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