Pecan, Carya illinoensis
In March of 2011, a Pecan tree in Holliday, Texas, was brought to the attention of the Texas Historic Tree Coalition (TXHTC) by Mr. Ken Fibbe, a reporter for the Times Record News. Mr. Fibbe was introduced to the tree by Mr. Don Briix, a local resident who originally noticed the tree after he had read about Indian marker trees.
Mr. Fibbe passed along photos as well as measurements of the tree. When the coalition determined the tree had some potential to be an Indian marker, Mr. Fibbe gathered a dead limb from the tree and cut several sections which he brought to the Dallas area for further research.
In May of 2011, TXHTC volunteers performed a site inspection and collected data and information on the tree, as well as the location. Mr. Robert Atchavit, a Comanche Nation member representing the Penetuka Band was a consultant during the examination of the tree. He believed the Pecan tree was a Comanche Marker Tree and he presented his case as to why and provided his perspective regarding several issues. The coalition was honored to have Mr. Atchavit be a part of the process.
Following the site inspection, volunteers spent a considerable amount of time collecting historical data. In 2012, a formal report was submitted to the Comanche Nation requesting their consideration to recognize the Pecan as a Comanche Marker Tree. In October of 2014, TXHTC was informed that the Comanche Nation accepted the Pecan as a Comanche Marker Tree.
As with previous Comanche Marker Trees, a framed letter of recognition and a certificate for the tree’s inclusion on the Comanche Marker Tree Registry were created and presented to the City of Holliday. An original drawing of the tree was used as the artwork for the certificate.
Mr. Steve Houser along with Mr. Atchavit and Mr. Briix attended a Holliday City Council meeting on February 9, 2015, where each of the gentlemen spoke briefly. Mr. Houser then presented the Holliday Mayor and City Council with the Holliday Comanche Marker Tree certificate and the letter of recognition.
To express the collective sentiment of the Comanche Nation’s recognition of the Holliday tree as an official Comanche Marker Tree, the Comanche Business Committee passed Resolution 617, on June 10, 2017. Essentially, the resolution is a formal and public proclamation that the Comanche recognize the Holliday tree as a historical part of the Comanche way of life, their nomadic equestrian life during the 18th and 19th centuries.
Mr. Atchavit worked with Comanche officials as an advocate to encourage a formal recognition ceremony for the tree. And on March 16th, 2018, over 100 people gathered near Holliday Creek, where the tree is located. It was an impressive and notable celebration.
In The Comanche Nation News, Volume 19, Edition 4 published in April 2018, Ms. Jolene Schonchin, news staff for the paper wrote an article that included the following:
Comanche Singers Robert Tehauno, Kevin Sovo, Sr., and Jim Moore sang the Comanche Flag Song and the Comanche Veteran’s Song, bringing tears to the eyes of many people in the crowd. The singers brought the dedication to a close with a series of Round Dance songs.
Steve Houser, founding member and trustee of the Texas Historic Tree Coalition as well as chairperson for the Indian Marker Tree Project, was honored with a gift of appreciation from the Comanche Elder Council, a Comanche Nation flag.
The recognition ceremony was a memorable event with distinguished guests that included:
TXHTC is grateful for all who attended. It was an event that will long be remembered.