When it comes to Big Trees, General Sherman is the king. Not only is it the biggest tree in the world, but also the largest living thing on earth. Using American Forests’ guidelines of height, circumference, and ¼ crown spread to determine the country’s biggest trees, General Sherman has a total of 1,321 points. With the highest point total on the entire National Register of Big Trees, this Giant sequoia reigns supreme. In fact, the tree is so large that it falls into a category we call “megatrees” – trees that have more than 650 points.
Some may wonder how this colossal giant received its name. When Sequoia National Park was established after Yellowstone, it was explored by park superintendents who were also former officers in the military. They named many of the trees in the park after generals and past US presidents. The General Sherman tree was named after the famous Civil War general; other sequoias were given similar names like General Grant, Washington, Lincoln, President, and Robert. E. Lee.
General Sherman has been on the National Register of Big Trees since the program began in 1940. Given its enormous size, this Giant sequoia will retain its crown for many years to come.