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."
Inside the pages of If Trees Could Talk, Allison gives readers aged 7 to 12 fascinating stories that introduce them to noteworthy trees, both past and present, across Wisconsin. From Kenosha's buried forest on the shores of Lake Michigan to the Wyalusing maple that saw the last of the passenger pigeons; from Aldo Leopold's "good oak" to the disappeared elms of State Street in Madison, these stories open up a fascinating ecological and social history of Wisconsin to young readers. Other stories showcase the state's history: readers will encounter Chief Black Hawk hiding in a hickory, Civil War soldiers enlisting for battle under "sign-up" trees, and trees used to hang criminals without a trial. They will also learn of large and unusual trees like the Columbus Cottonwood, which was over 26 feet around or, in the words of the author, so large that "it would take you and eight of your friends with your arms outstretched to reach all the way around it!"
Told in a compelling narrative style and supplemented with historic photographs and illustrations, these stories instill a sense of place and understanding of the rich heritage of our trees and forests. The book also carries an environmental message encouraging children to appreciate and manage natural resources wisely and respectfully. The highly accessible format includes a map of historic trees locations, a glossary of tree terms, a tree identification chart, and a list of suggested books and websites for further reading.