Bellefontaine Examiner

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Preserving history

Former foot trail marker tree commemorated

Wood-carving-912

ABOVE: Woodcarver Bob Holderman unveils his most recent work Tuesday before the Sloan Library Board of Trustees depicting a large sugar maple northeast of Zanesfield that served as an Indian marker in the 1700s. (EXAMINER PHOTO | NATE SMITH) FRONT PAGE PHOTO: The Indian marker tree northeast of Zanesfield, shown in1992, was badly damaged in the 2005 ice storm and had started to decay and rot in recent years. (PHOTO | BOB STOLL)

A piece of local history has been preserved and was gifted Tuesday to the Sloan Library in Zanesfield.

The project to salvage a dying 260-year-old sugar maple tree that served as an Indian foot trail began in the spring, an initiative by Bellefontaine’s Natural Resources Conservation Service office.

Ruth Grytko, who owns the land on which the tree rests but lives in New Jersey, gave NRCS permission to try and save some of the lumber.

In the 1770s, Indians used the tree to mark their trails through the hillside about a mile northeast of Zanesfield.

“I didn’t know Indians didn’t have road signs in those days,” woodcarver Bob Holderman joked Tuesday while presenting his work to the Sloan Library Board of Trustees.

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