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American Chestnut descendant marked at Lindsey Wilson

The Lindsey Wilson tree, now 10 years old, is one of two American Chestnuts growing in Adair County.
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By Duane Bonifer
News from Lindsey Wilson College

COLUMBIA, KY - The Lindsey Wilson College community marked a descendant of a century-old American Chestnut tree that once grew more than 100 feet tall in Adair County's Cane Valley area.

A plaque was placed next to a 17-year-old American chestnut tree, which grows between Keefe Hall and Walter S. Reuling Stadium on the west side of the college's A.P. White Campus.

The tree was given to Lindsey Wilson by Harold Warren of Columbia when it was a seedling. Warren grew the tree from an American Chestnut that was felled in 1997 by his son, Steve. The American chestnut was estimated to be more than 100 years old, 100 feet tall and about 50 inches in diameter.

"After they pushed down the tree and sawed the tree up, I decided I would get out and look to see if I could find a sprout from the tree," Warren said. "And, lo and behold, there was one growing out from a chestnut. I brought it home, kept it for awhile, and then I thought, 'I need to do something with it.'"

So Warren gave the tree to Lindsey Wilson. During its sapling years, the tree was taken care of by the late Johnny Begley of LWC Physical Plant Operations. About 10 years ago, the tree was planted in its current location.

In addition to placing a plaque commemorating Warren's gift to the college, a stone that memorializes Begley sits at the tree's base.

According to Warren, the Lindsey Wilson tree is one of two American Chestnuts growing in Adair County. The species was once common in the region before it was nearly wiped out by the chestnut blight fungal disease.

This story was posted on 2014-11-26 04:28:33
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Plaque honors one of two American Chestnut trees in Adair

2014-11-26 - Keefe Hall, 152 Blue Raider Drive - Photo by Duane Bonifer, LWC.
Harold Warren of Columbia holds a plaque to mark an American chestnut tree growing on the west side of the Lindsey Wilson College A.P. White Campus. From left: daughter Donna Shirley; son-in-law Carol Shirley; granddaughter Stephanie Shirley; Warren; LWC Instructor of Religion Bill Davenport; LWC Director of Physical Plant Operations Mike Newton; Garry Coomer of LWC Physical Plant Operations. - Duane Bonifer, Lindsey Wilson College

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