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Burgoyne Elm Will Be Planted to Honor Dr. Tracey Wilson

Burgoyne elm in front of the Sarah Whitman Hooker house in West Hartford. Submitted photo

‘Tracey’s Tree’ will be planted in Elmwood on Oct. 7 in honor of the former Conard history teacher who serves as West Hartford town historian.


The public is invited to a tree dedication ceremony for a new elm tree at William E. Blanchfield Park in the Elmwood section of West Hartford on Saturday, Oct. 7 at 3 p.m.

Ever wonder where “Elmwood” got its name?

This year marks the 240th anniversary of the Continental Army’s defeat of the British at Saratoga – perhaps the most important moment of the American Revolution. The Connecticut militia (including men from the West Division of Hartford) marched to the battle, camping at Kingston Plains, NY.

While there, they heard of the victory of General Gates’ forces over British General Burgoyne. Although they had not seen battle, they returned jubilant, and in celebration planted Liberty trees – the elms that gave Elmwood its name.

Sadly, the original elm trees succumbed to disease years ago, but new elms have been planted in their place. The Elmwood Business Association is pleased to carry on this tradition and plant another elm with the assistance and support of the Noah Webster House & West Hartford Historical Society and the Knox Foundation.

The newly-planted elm will have a plaque denoting it as “Tracey’s Tree” to honor Dr. Tracey Wilson, long time history teacher at both Talcott Middle and Conard High Schools. Wilson continues to bring the rich history of West Hartford to life in her role as the town’s historian. 

Wilson has inspired many with her love of and devotion to local history. It is only fitting that a tree be named in her honor, so that 100 years from now, people will be reminded of her role in our town’s history every time they see “Tracey’s Tree.”

As part of this event, donations are being raised “in honor of Dr. Tracey Wilson” to support both the Noah Webster House & West Hartford Historical Society and the Knox Foundation. Said one recent donor, “Tracey Wilson is a community treasure. Thank you for honoring her in this beautiful way.”

The tree-naming ceremony will take place on the Elmwood Green at 3 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 7, 2017. The event will open with the presentation of the colors by the Governor’s Footguard and musical selections by Conard choir singers. There will be several brief speeches and then a blessing of the tree. The ceremony should last about an hour and will be followed by refreshments.

To donate visit www.noahwebsterhouse.org or call 860-521-5362.

The event is free and open to the public. No registration is required. The Elmwood Green is located at the corner of New Britain Avenue and Quaker Lane South in the Elmwood section of West Hartford, CT. Ample parking is available at nearby Beachland Park. For additional information contact Amy Boulton at (860) 521-5362 x 15.

The Noah Webster House & West Hartford Historical Society is a cultural destination where citizens can learn to understand and appreciate the past.  The museum preserves the birthplace of Noah Webster, the founding father, educator, author and lexicographer who taught generations of Americans what it means to be American.  This National Historic Landmark is also a repository for West Hartford’s history, the community that molded Webster’s future and is still thriving 250-plus years later.  The historic house and exhibit spaces are open daily 1-4 p.m.  For information on the museum’s extensive school and public programs, please visit www.noahwebsterhouse.org or call 860-521-5362.

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Courtesy photo

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