Damaged Civil War Memorial Trees Will Live Again

DGS crews helped in the transfer of Civil War Memorial trees that were damaged by January storms in Capitol Park.

A crane was maneuvered into the park and positioned to lift the four massive trunk sections, three from at tulip tree and one from an Elm, onto trucks for hauling away to a sawmill for milling and careful drying out.

The hope is that in time, the wood can be returned to the Capitol, perhaps as benches, or converted into wooden art objects for display.

The damaged trees include:

  • The 90-foot-tall tulip tree was planted as a sapling in 1897 and came from the Battlefield of Five Forks, Virginia.  This March 31st-April 1st 1865 battle (and Union victory) set in motion the end of the Civil War just eight days later; General Robert E. Lee’s surrender to Ulysses S. Grant (the North’s Commanding General) at the Appomattox Court House in Virginia was on April 9th, 1865.
  • The 85-foot-tall American Elm was from the site of the tomb of President William McKinley, the last president to have served in the Civil War; he was buried in 1901.  It was added to California’s Civil War Grove in 1902.
  • The shattered box elder was planted in 1897 as a sapling from Missionary Ridge, Tennessee.  The Battle of Missionary Ridge was fought on Nov. 25, 1863, as part of the Chattanooga Campaign.  After the Union victory in the Battle of Lookout Mountain, Major General Ulysses S. Grant assaulted Missionary Ridge and defeated the Confederate Army of Tennessee.
DGS Capitol Park’s groundskeeper Kirk Malan guides a section of a downed Civil War tree into a truck, readying it for transport to a sawmill on March 2.

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