Big Tree History
The call to search for America’s biggest trees first came in the September 1940 issue of American Forests magazine, where concerned forester Joseph Sterns published his article “Let’s Find and Save the Biggest Trees.” Sterns wasn’t referring to the famous and historic trees that were already protected, but the giants left standing in virgin forests.
Since that call to locate and measure the largest trees of each species, American Forests has maintained the National Register of Big Trees, a list of the biggest trees in America. The Big Tree Program is active in all 50 states and the District of Columbia, and is used as a model for several Big Tree programs around the world. With sponsorship from The Davey Tree Expert Company since 1989, the National Big Tree Program has been able to reach a wider audience and promote the same message for over 70 years: regardless of size, all trees are champions of the environment.
Key milestones for the National Big Tree Program:
1940 – The first tree is nominated: a Chestnut Oak in Suffield, Connecticut.
1941 – The American Big Trees Report is launched with a total of 77 champions.
1961 – The program name is changed to the Social Register of Big Trees.
1969 – The first Hawaiian edition of the register is published.
1978 – The publication changes its name to the National Register of Big Trees.
2010 – The National Register of Big Trees launches the first online publication of register.
View previous national champions to see how they compare to the champs of 2014.
About The Davey Tree Expert Company
The Davey Tree Expert Company is the premiere sponsor of the National Register of Big Trees and has U.S. and Canadian operations in more than 47 states and five provinces. Davey provides a variety of tree care, grounds maintenance and consulting services for the residential, utility, commercial, and government markets. Founded in 1880, Davey has been employee owned for 35 years and has more than 7,300 employees who provide Proven Solutions for a Growing World. For more information, visit www.davey.com.