oldelm

This original photo of an American elm serves as the basis for a new banner gracing the back entrance of Memorial Hall Library. A town historian believes the tree once stood on South Main Street.

It’s a long-gone elm from town, but in no way is it forgotten as a huge banner hanging outside the back entrance to Memorial Hall Library is serving as a beautiful reminder of the tree that once was.

While it’s perhaps the most talked-about elm tree in town this summer, the original location of the tree emblazoned on the library banner that was the subject of an Aug. 15 Townsman story had remained a puzzler.

No one seemed to know where in town the elm once stood. And the circa 1900 photo of it shed no clues as to its original whereabouts.

But well-known town historian Jim Batchelder, back from vacation, seems to have some clue. Batchelder believes the tree most likely stood on South Main Street near what is now the intersection of Alderbrook Circle and Route 28.

Researching an earlier copy of The Townsman, Batchelder found a published photograph of the elm tree that dates its planting to 1899.

Apparently, there was once a school in the area of South Main Street where it grew and the elm tree was perfect for that school’s landscaping.

— Judy Wakefield, staff writer

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