Station Tree - Natick, MA
Posted by: Groundspeak Premium Member NorStar
N 42° 19.257 W 071° 19.663
19T E 308190 N 4688035
This tree, a white oak estimated to be about 500 years old, was referenced as a boundary in a land survey in 1764.
Waymark Code: WM10DQ1
Location: Massachusetts, United States
Date Posted: 04/19/2019
Published By:Groundspeak Premium Member wayfrog
Views: 2

In Natick, along Winter Street, is the Station Tree, once used as a survey to define the boundary of the towns of Natick and, then Needham.

The tree is located on the north side of the road, about a hundred feet east from the intersection with Hovey Avenue. As Winter Street is narrow for a busy street, it is best to park along Hovey Avenue.

The tree is a white oak that stands right at the edge of the road. It's dimensions are as follows (according to an article in the state newsletter, The Citizen Forester):

Diameter at Breast Height (D.B.H):4.8 feet (57.8 inches)
Circumference:15.1 feet (181.5 inches)
Height:75 feet
Estimated Age: 500 years.

Oaks, especially white oaks, were often used in surveys, because they were long-lasting trees that also were distinguishable from other trees. Livermore, in 1749, used the tree to mark the northeast corner of the "Needham Leg, which was a protrusion of Needham into Natick. Natick was established in 1651 as a "Praying Indian Town" of Rev. John Eliot, partly carved out of the original Dedham Plantation. Needham was carved out of Dedham in 1711 and included the present towns of Needham, Dedham, and Wellesley, and parts of Natick and Weston. Today, the boundary line is between Natick and Weston, and, as far as I can tell, the line is now further east by about 100 ft, so the tree is no longer part of modern boundary.

There is a metal marker to one side that states:

Part of the
Livermore Survey
Quercus alba" (The Citizen Forester, September 2017 - The Station Tree):

Map of Natick, 1750:

Web Page (
Genus/Species: White Oak (Quercus alba)

Height: 75

Girth: 15

Method of obtaining height: Reliable source

Method of obtaining girth: Reliable source

Location type: Other public property

Age: 500

Historical significance:
Part of a survey - was mature over 200 years ago.

Planter: None known.

Walk time: 0

Website reference: Not listed

Parking coordinates: Not Listed

Photograpy coordinates: Not Listed

Visit Instructions:
A closeup picture of your GPS receiver in your hand, with the tree in the background, is required. If the tree is on private property, this closeup photograph with the tree in the background may be taken from the nearest public vantage point without actually going to the tree.
The required photograph does not need to show the entire tree, but the individual tree must be recognizable.
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