Last updated 09/10/10
The "Lone Pine," originally known as the "Old Pine," was a colonial-era white pine tree that stood for more than 150 years on what is now called Observatory Hill, above the Dartmouth Green.
The Old Pine (from the Rauner Special Collections Library, where there are three folders full of Pine images)
Beginning in the 1850's, graduating classes gathered around the tree to smoke a pipe, according to Ralph Nading Hill’s The College on the Hill. In 1887, it was struck by lightning, and in 1892, a windstorm wrought more extensive damage; the College finally cut the dying tree down in 1895.
Mike Amico '07 in front of the Dartmouth Pine (photo by Joseph Mehling '69)
Today only the preserved stump remains. However, many items made from the wood, as well as a whole section of the trunk, can be found in the College Archives housed in the Rauner Special Collections Library.
The Lone Pine is one of the enduring symbols of Dartmouth. The College’s bicentennial celebration logo (which still in use today on the College flag) was based on the Lone Pine, as are other graphic representations.
Thanks to the Class of 1927, the Lone Pine is no longer the only official College conifer. Forty years after graduating, the class planted a new tree, known as the Dartmouth Pine, near the entrance to the Bema. They placed its care in the hands of the Class of 1967, who transferred stewardship after another 40 years to the Class of 2007.
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