The Texas A&M Forest Service (TFS), through Texas A&M University Press, first published Famous Trees of Texas as a hardcover book in 1970. The Texas A&M Forest Service Famous Trees of Texas website updates and replaces the original book and subsequent editions. TFS created the website in an effort “to memorialize those trees which have …Read More
The following passage was written as a preface to the 3rd Edition of the Texas A&M Forest Service Famous Trees of Texas, published by Texas A&M University Press in 1984.
Trees have always been as basic to man’s needs as the food he eats. Their benefits are so much a part of his very existence that these blessings are often taken for granted. It is a foolish man, indeed, who believes he is beyond the influence of trees. They are his legacy of the past, his boon for the present, and his promise for the future.
Texans are fortunate to have such a rich and colorful historic heritage. They are also fortunate that much is being done to preserve and share it. Many historical museums have been established throughout the state, and organized groups of concerned men and women in every county are working hard to collect the bits and pieces of Texana which will one day weave a history as rich as the fabric of the people who made it.
The purpose of publishing the Texas A&M Forest Service Famous Trees of Texas is to memorialize those trees that have been witness to some of the exciting periods and events in Texas’ frontier history. Some were present when the Texans shook off the yoke of Mexican domination, and since then have been silent witnesses to the development of a dynamic state.
Many of Texas’ historic trees are forever lost. Inadequate records of their location, death by disease or neglect, and man’s thoughtless removal of those that stood in the way of progress have taken their toll. Information about these historical trees was obtained from the most authoritative sources available, and to those individuals and organizations who helped in any way, we are indebted.
Also described are some Texas trees that are not famous for historical reasons, but because they have been certified by the American Forestry Association as the largest of their kind in the United States.
Some of the trees featured on the website have been marked and are being preserved. Many, however, have received little or no attention. All of Texas’ famous trees should be marked, protected, and made accessible for visits by this and future generations.
There is still time to insure this legacy.