At an Arbor Day celebration, the City of Sandy Springs partnered with the Big Trees Forrest Preserve to plant an extra-special 15-foot Live Oak tree.
The Live Oak is Georgia’s state tree, but this particular tree came from a historical acorn.
John Ripley Forbes (photo top right) worked for seven years to try to save “The Friendship Oak” (drawing top left)—a tree estimated to be more than 250 years old—when the Georgia DOT widened US Highway 19 near Albany, Georgia. In 1997, the tree was finally cut down.
But Ed Law, an Albany resident and supporter of Forbes, saved 14 acorns from The Friendship Oak and grew them in containers in his backyard.
It is one of those trees that will now grow in the Sandy Springs preserve. And while Forbes died at the age of 93 on August 26, 2006, his memory will live on through the offspring of The Friendship Tree.
“These wonderful live oak trees are an indication of how much we treasure this preserve and how dear it is to us,” Sandy Springs Mayor Eva Galambos (right) said at the ceremony. We thank John Forbes and his family for the wonderful foresight that they had, and we’re going to be watching his baby and taking care of it.”