TREES - TREES - and More Trees

MANY OF the stately old trees that once lined most of our streets are gone. Age took the toll of most. Replacing these towering trees is doubtful due to their height interfering with power lines and their roots hooving up sidewalks and causing damage to some water and sewer lines.

A BEAUTIFUL compromise, however, may be seen in the downtown area where flowering and other smaller trees that are more resistant to road salt and vehicle exhaust line the streets.

MANY OF the old trees around the Victorian Mansion Museum at the corner of North Chestnut Street and Walton Avenue have been victims of age and removed. Efforts are being undertaken to add some interesting new varieties. The recent addition are four trees given as memorials.

Lois Van Scyoc, long time museum board member gave this interesting Franklin Tree in memory of the late Bea and Everett Hanlon.

"AMERICA'S FIRST Rare Plant: The Franklin Tree" by Lucy Rowland describes the discovery of this "plant" by John Bartram and his son, William. In October 1765, the Bartrams, after crossing the Altamaha River in Georgia, rode through a bottomland between two sand hills where they came across a group of trees. They left them unnamed for several years. A specimen William had sent to England brought a reply that it was a unique genus. So in 1785, in honor of the Bartrams' great family friend, Benjamin Franklin, they named it the Franklin Tree or Franklinia altamaha. It blooms in September through the first hard frost.

A STEWARTA, a pseudo camellia shrub/tree that blooms from spring through the summer, has been provided by contributions given in memory of the late Dottie Marshall, longtime board member of the Belmont County Historic Society.

A YELLOW Magnolia, so named for its butter yellow blooms, is one of only three in this area. It has been donated by Emery Stewart III in memory of his aunt, Kathryn Stewart Haggerty, who was close friend of Julia Watt Stewart who grew up in this house.

OUTSIDE THE dining room window is a Paper Bark Maple. It was given by Rebeccca Thomas in memory of her parents, Walter and Ellen Jane Thomas.

Trees such as these not only provide beauty today, but also are living memorials to those in whose memory they were given.

jeanealities is compiled by Jean Palmer Davies, lifetime Enterprise associate. She may be reached at jeandavies@comcast.net