A 600-Year Old Oak Tree in Basking Ridge, NY

The oak tree circa 1923. (Photo: Presbyterian Historical Society/Wikimedia Commons)

The oak tree circa 1923. (Photo: Presbyterian Historical Society/Wikimedia Commons)

Sometimes trees act as witnesses to a history so vast it stretches generations, or 600 years, like the Oak tree in a cemetery in Basking Ridge, New York. This oak settled into its home before Christopher Columbus arrived, and is said by locals to have provided shade to passing soldiers in the Revolutionary war. After last summer’s intense heat, the old tree died as a result of the stress, and will be disassembled in the coming months so it does not pose a risk to surrounding structures. Appreciating the naturally occurring longevity of an old oak tree is just one more reason of many to make decisions thoughtfully, and care for the impressive nature that surrounds built environments. See photos and read the full story written by James Barron of the New York Times here.