When you pass by the Virginia Merion DiNenno Historical Society headquarters on Smithbridge Road, you may not notice the beautiful Copper Beech tree next to the building. When it was first reported to be a Pennsylvania Champion it was 77.7 feet tall, with a circumference of 176 inches and a spread of 57 feet. And that was 11 years ago!
The original nominator of the tree to the PA Champion list is Al Eelman, past CTHS President. In a recent interview, he stated “this Copper Beech tree is the one remaining of a crop of Copper Beech trees which were planted all along Route One from Concordville to Lima on different properties along the way. All the others are now gone.”
Just underneath the massive canopy is a small sign which states: “This tree was likely planted when the current stone house was built circa 1810 by John Pierce, descendant of the first homeowner on the property, to replace the original log cabin built in 1744. Copper Beech trees are noted for their copper or purple leaves, and their stout trunk, somewhat resembling an elephant’s foot, the bark being light gray and smooth, with some parts having a wrinkled
As township life begins to return to a new normal, look for the Concord Township Historical Society Museum open house (designated Sunday afternoons once per month) and plan to visit this incredible specimen for yourself!