Recently, a very large, old oak tree came down at Ruppert Corporate Headquarters off of 108. I have been watching this tree decline for several years and was sad but relieved to see it go as it had become a hazard to the buildings and people around it. I spent a few minutes with the stump today and thought I would share a little bit of history. I counted the tree rings in 20 year increments. Pretty incredible when you think about it; this tree has seen a lifetime of history and then some…
20 years ago in 1997 – Princess Diana was killed in a car accident in Paris, Microsoft became the world’s most valuable company, Mother Theresa died, OJ Simpson was found guilty, Titanic was hot at the box office and “Harry Potter and the Sorceror’s Stone” was first published.
40 years ago in 1977 – The US turned the Panama Canal back over to Panama, the first Apple Computers were sold, President Jimmy Carter was elected to the presidency, Seattle Slew wins the triple crown and the World Trade Center in NYC is completed. It was a huge year at the movies. Rocky, Smokey and the Bandit, Star Wars Ep. IV, Saturday Night Fever, King Kong and Close Encounters all made their debuts this year.
60 years ago in 1957 – The Little Rock 9 integrate an Arkansas high school, Milwaukee Braves win the world series (Super Bowl doesn’t exist yet), West Side Story debuts on Broadway, “Around the World in 80 Days” wins the Oscar for best picture, the Russians launch Sputnik, the first satellite to orbit the earth
80 years ago in 1937 – Adolf Hitler announces his intentions to go to war, Margaret Mitchell wins the Pulitzer for “Gone with the Wind”, the first commercial flight across the Pacific is flown by Pan AM Airlines, Average cost of a new house is $4,100, Amelia Earhart disappears over the Pacific Ocean, “Snow White and the 7 Dwarfs” premiers, the first full length, full color animated movie. The Hindenburg bursts into flames in NJ, and the Golden Gate Bridge opens in San Francisco.
100 years ago in 1917 – Einstein publishes his first paper on cosmology, Houdini escapes after being buried alive, Al Capone becomes Scarface after a knife fight leaves him disfigured, William “Buffalo Bill” Cody dies, US Severs diplomatic relations with Germany, Woodrow Wilson begins his second term as president, The University of Oregon defeats the University of Pennsylvania in the third annual Rosebowl.
125 years ago – 1892- Ellis Island becomes a welcome refuge for immigrants, John Muir forms the Sierra Club, the first concrete paved street is built in Ohio, Lizzie Borden is arrested, The Amsterdam Swim Club becomes “The Y”, The Nutcracker Suite by Ilyich Tchaikovsky makes its debut, Grover Cleveland is elected president. And the remarkable life, of our tree begins.