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Nov 20, 2010

Tree marked 7 generations

I took the above photograph, a year or so ago, of my grandson, William, putting the hug on a giant White Spruce, along the main trail at Cold Creek Conservation Area. The photo below is the same tree after it fell victim to 80 mph winds earlier this week. King Township workers sawed through it, in a couple of places, in order to keep the trail passable. I counted the growth rings in one of the remnants and determined this monster was 135 years old, which means it started its skyward climb back in 1875. And that was 44 years after my grandson's great-great-great-grandfather, William Cairns, first set foot on this same piece of land, in Upper Canada, in 1831. William Cairns was in his mid-teens and had accompanied his older brother, Adam, from Scotland, as settlers in this virgin Canadian forest. He remained for a few years, helping to clear the land and learning to adapt his British farming skills to the Canadian reality, before relocating within King Township and making his own way as a farmer.
It seems all so natural that this one-generation spruce tree and the 7-generation portion of the Cairns family tree have co-existed all these years. Is there a spruce seedling in the ground at Cold Creek that will mature and be seen by a great-great-great-grandchild of my grandchildren? Development pressures, global warming, human lifestyles and relocation, and numerous other dynamic influences will play their parts here. I hope that repect for the history of all living things prevails and all shall share and treasure our origins in this unique world.
Please comment if you wish.
Photos by BarrytheBirder

1 comment:

Allison said...

I hope that is the case. Amazing history, thanks for sharing.