This over 100 year old maple tree has deep roots on my street corner. A couple of weeks ago the power company marked it to be cut down. There used to be six such trees on the streets of our corner lot. This is the only one left. Every storm it threatens our roof and bedroom. It threatens the transformer and power line. It threatens any random car parked in the space below it or driving by in the street. It has been badly trimmed (by the same power company over the years) which has helped make it in the dilapidated shape it is in. It is home to some nasty nest robbing birds. Two times we have had roof work done because of those old rotten maples and wind. It’s time for it to go.
I may miss that old tree though. In the fall it is a source of some entertainment to me as the squirrels love all of the cracks and holes for storing their winter nuts. It has seen rolls and rolls of toilet paper decorating its branches at Halloween. It drops some amazingly colorful leaves in the fall, the kind you want to keep in a scrapbook. In the winter the snow hangs on the branches and look like a Christmas card when the red cardinals perch on them. It is one of the first signs of spring to come with it’s red buds and birdsongs. The nest robbers drop egg shells below it, cracked bursts of robins egg blue color. Many summer days have been lazily spent sitting in it’s shade on the porch reading a good book and watching the world go by. Its branches have seen my children play under them and pack up cars to go off to college and off to war. Every ring of it’s trunk would tell such a tale.
The land on which Winslow is situated today was entered as a grant from the United States government June 13, 1833. Winslow was laid out November 14, 1837, north of the Patoka River. Center Street was one of the original streets in the town plat. John Dedman just posted this old picture of the Winslow Hotel that used to be on my street on his Winslow Eskimo website. Someone took the time to plant all of these trees along the town streets. Over one hundred years ago, someone thought it would look nice for the town to have trees and shades.
They also used bricks to make sidewalks from a time in our past when people strolled and visited. The trees lined this sidewalk. Grass has mostly covered them all now. In the summer when the grass dries to a crackly brown from no rain, the grass covering the brick sidewalks is the first to die and you can see their paths through our yards. The roots from all of those old maples have caused major upheaval to the bricks over the years. But when winter comes and rain washes away the dirt they peek up through the ground. I stack them in the back yard to use for random projects so that the lawn mower doesn’t hit them.
Not only are the trees disappearing, so are the old houses. They have become so dilapidated that they are being tore down one by one. Some are saved. Mine is somewhere around 100 years old. It is an old Wilkinson Lumber kit house. There are several kit homes on our street. You picked out your house, drove your truck through the garage at Wilkinson Lumber and they tossed your kit on the back of your truck. There is one kit house down our street that is still being painted and retains it’s charm with it’s decorative details. The rest are like mine, with their exterior details hid behind aluminum or vinyl siding.