cover of book

Every Root an Anchor: Wisconsin's Famous and Historic Trees
by R. Bruce Allison
foreword by Paul DeLong
Wisconsin Historical Society Press, 2005
Paper: 978-0-87020-370-1 | eISBN: 978-0-87020-528-6


In Every Root an Anchor, writer and arborist R. Bruce Allison celebrates Wisconsin's most significant, unusual, and historic trees. More than one hundred tales introduce us to trees across the state, some remarkable for their size or age, others for their intriguing histories. From magnificent elms to beloved pines to Frank Lloyd Wright's oaks, these trees are woven into our history, contributing to our sense of place. They are anchors for time-honored customs, manifestations of our ideals, and reminders of our lives' most significant events.

For this updated edition, Allison revisits the trees' histories and tells us which of these unique landmarks are still standing. He sets forth an environmental message as well, reminding us to recognize our connectedness to trees and to manage our tree resources wisely. As early Wisconsin conservationist Increase Lapham said, "Tree histories increase our love of home and improve our hearts. They deserve to be told and remembered."


R. Bruce Allison has been a professional arborist in Madison, Wisconsin, since 1974. He has earned degrees from Brown University and from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He served as president of the Wisconsin Arborist Association and as chairman of the Dane County Tree Board and the Wisconsin Urban Forestry Council. He is the author of several books and many articles dealing with trees and nature.


2005 First Place in Nature from the Midwest Independent Publishers Association 2005 Merit Award in Gardening from the Midwest Independent Publishers Association

"Not only a history of Wisconsin's famous trees, Allison's book is also a wonderful travel guide highlighting special trees and special places in every corner of the state. This book was written for all of us who have ever appreciated the beauty, shade, and memories that trees provide." - Shelley Ryan, Master Gardener and host of WPT's The Wisconsin Gardener

    Foreword	ix
    Preface	xi
    Chapter I: Wisconsin's Magnificent Elms	1
    Remembered Elms	2
    Sawyer County Elms, Gotham Elm, Ripon Elm,
    UW-Madison Elms, Capitol Park Elms, Lake Mills Elm, Neillsville Elm, Mount Mary College 
    Wellers Elm, Taliesin Elm, General Grant Giant Elm
    The Stelter Elm, Marquette County	5
    The Fort Howard Elm, Green Bay	5
    The Neenah Treaty Elm	6
    The Grignon Elms, Kaukauna	7
    Indian Agency House and Portage Elms	8
    Milwaukee's Menomonee River Parkway Elm	8
    The Tuesday Club's Slippery Elm, River Falls	10
    The Rockton Grove	10
    Disease Resistant Elms	11
    Chapter II: Historic Trees	13
    The Frank Lloyd Wright Tea Circle Oaks, Spring Green	14
    The Dunbar Oak, Waukesha	16
    Trading Post Oak, Lake Mendota	17
    The Peck Bur Oak, Madison	18
    The Plough Inn Maple, Madison	19
    The Spring Tavern/Hotel Walnut, Madison	20
    The La Follette Hickory, Madison	22
    The Coffin Tree, Rusk County	23
    The Knut Juve Trees, Dane County	24
    Boscobel's Dean Oak	24
    The Cooksville Scots Pine	25
    The Military Road Sycamore, Fond du Lac	26
    Fort Atkinson's Crooked Oak	26
    The Sherwood Beech	26
    Famous Apple Trees	28
    The Wyalusing Maple	29
    Two Civil War Sign-Up Trees,
    Richland and Walworth Counties	30
    The Randall Wilcox Buckeye, DePere	31
    The Delavan Founder's Oak	32
    The Lone Tree Prairie Oak, St. Croix County	32
    Ripon's Signal Oak	33
    The Pleasant Company Oak, Middleton	34
    Chapter III: Hanging Trees	35
    Durand Lynch Tree, Pepin County 	36
    The Parade Day Hanging Tree, La Crosse	37
    The Accidental Hanging Tree, Trempealeau County	37
    The Souvenir Hanging Tree, Vernon County	38
    The Janesville Hanging Tree	38
    Chapter IV: Homeplace Trees	39
    The Jones Maples, Fort Atkinson	40
    The Magnus Swenson Trees, Madison	41
    The Lodi Oak	42
    The Poet's Larch, Iowa County	42
    Meier's Oak, Price County	44
    The Rufus Dodge Maples, Fort Atkinson	44
    The Grant County Sycamore	46
    The Damuth Civil War Maples, Jefferson County	46
    The Rhodes Bald Cypress, Kenosha County	47
    The Walking Staff Tree, Sauk County	47
    The Kohler Boxelder	48
    The Hoard Museum Pine, Fort Atkinson	48
    Trees That Stood in the Way	50
    Chapter V: Indian Trees	51
    The Indian Half-Way Tree, Green County	52
    The Cameron Council Oak, Oshkosh	53
    The Indian Game Trees, Winnebago County	53
    Blackhawk Country Club's Spirit Oak, Madison	54
    The Blackhawk Hickory, Madison	54
    Trail Marker Trees	56
    The Chief Tokaunee Oak, Dane County	58
    Chapter VI: Surveyor's Trees	59
    The Territorial Oak, Whitewater	60
    The Cram/Houghton Blaze Tree, Vilas County	60
    Witness Trees	61
    The Hanerville Oak	62
    Chapter VII: Ancient, Huge and Unusual Trees	63
    Washington Island Pine	64
    The Phelps Oak, Dodge County	64
    The Pine Street Oak, Madison	65
    The Champion White Ash, Maple Bluff	66
    The Montello Cottonwood	66
    The Columbus Cottonwood, Dodge County	68
    Two-Leader Pine, Eau Claire County	69
    The Stockbridge Cottonwoods, Calumet County	69
    The Black Tupelo Tree, Kenosha County	69
    The Scary Oak, Kettle Moraine State Park	70
    The General MacArthur White Pine, Forest County	70
    Brule River White Pine, Douglas County	72
    The Lunde Chestnut Trees, Trempealeau County	72
    The Upside-Down Trees, Wilmot	73
    The Buried Forest, Kenosha	74
    Chapter VIII: Arboretums, Campus Trees and Forests	75
    The Muir Locust, Madison	77
    The Harvey Oak, Madison	78
    The President's Tree, Madison	79
    The Bascom Hill Elms, Madison	80
    The Willow Drive Willows, Madison	81
    The Geotropic Goff Larch, Madison	82
    The Autumn Purple White Ash, Madison	82
    The Euthenics Oak, Madison	83
    The American Yellowwood, Madison	83
    The Edgewood Oaks, Madison	83
    University of Wisconsin Arboretum, Madison	84
    Whitnall Park and Boerner Gardens, Milwaukee	86
    The Shorewood Tree Collection	87
    The Whitewater College Arboretum	88
    The Trees at Yerkes Observatory, Williams Bay	88
    The Mount Vernon Forest of Fame, Dane County	89
    The MacKenzie Environmental Education Center,
    Poynette	90
    Star Lake Forest, Vilas County	91
    Trees for Tomorrow, Vilas County	92
    The Paine Arboretum, Oshkosh	93
    Green Gables Estate, Lake Geneva	94
    Chapter IX: Trees in Literature, Art and Folklore	95
    Ben Logan's Big Maple Tree, Crawford County	96
    Aldo Leopold's Good Oak, Sauk County	97
    The Most Painted Tree in Wisconsin,
    Milwaukee County	98
    Caddie Woodlawn and the Old Elm, Dunn County	99
    The Durward's Glen Spruce, Sauk County	99
    The Father Hennepin Blaze Tree, Racine County	100
    Prairie du Chien's Black Hawk Tree	100
    The Haunted Mansion and Pines, Merrill	102
    Chapter X: Arborphiles	103
    Walter Scott's Hickory Hill, Madison	104
    Walter Ware Pines, Waushara County	105
    Donald Redman: Ripon's Tree Man	106
    Joyce Kilmer: The Man Who Wrote "Trees"	107
    Rudy Lange: Delavan Tree Surgeon	108
    H. D. Thoreau: Wisconsin Tourist	109
    About the Author	110
    Index	111 

See other books on: Allison, R. Bruce | Anchor | Botany | Plants | Trees
See other titles from Wisconsin Historical Society Press
More to explore: Popular Culture