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28 September 2015

Gardens at Bowling Green – the king elm is dead

The huge English elm that stood outside the Green has been dead for over a year — and it has finally been taken down. When it was alive it sometimes dropped big branches without warning (you can see the bent spikes on the fence where one of them hit it).

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But it was a magnificent tree, 178 years old (yes, somebody counted the rings!) and it was a Landmark. The small branches have been taken away, but the wood from the trunk will live on:
“The Witness Tree Project is a curricular initiative involving Rhode Island School of Design (RISD) and the National Park Service (NPS). Witness trees, as designated by the National Park Service, are long-standing trees that have ‘witnessed’ key events, trends, and people in American history. The Project arranges for fallen witness trees to be shipped from a national historic site to Rhode Island School of Design, where students, enrolled in a joint history seminar and furniture studio, interpret the history the tree witnessed and make relevant objects from the tree’s wood.”

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