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Amherst College begins move of historic tree

  • A Camperdown Elm at Amherst College waits to be moved and transplanted on Friday, March 15, 2013. The public shade tree committee pushed to save the tree and the college is spending $100K to move it.<br/><br/>SARAH CROSBY

    A Camperdown Elm at Amherst College waits to be moved and transplanted on Friday, March 15, 2013. The public shade tree committee pushed to save the tree and the college is spending $100K to move it.

    SARAH CROSBY Purchase photo reprints »

  • A Camperdown Elm at Amherst College waits to be moved and transplanted on Friday, March 15, 2013. The public shade tree committee pushed to save the tree and the college is spending $100K to move it.<br/><br/>SARAH CROSBY

    A Camperdown Elm at Amherst College waits to be moved and transplanted on Friday, March 15, 2013. The public shade tree committee pushed to save the tree and the college is spending $100K to move it.

    SARAH CROSBY Purchase photo reprints »

  • A Camperdown Elm at Amherst College waits to be moved and transplanted on Friday, March 15, 2013. The public shade tree committee pushed to save the tree and the college is spending $100K to move it.<br/><br/>SARAH CROSBY
  • A Camperdown Elm at Amherst College waits to be moved and transplanted on Friday, March 15, 2013. The public shade tree committee pushed to save the tree and the college is spending $100K to move it.<br/><br/>SARAH CROSBY

Bartlett Tree Experts of Simsbury, Conn. started the process of transporting the tree about 90 feet northeast using a large crane, said college spokeswoman Caroline Hanna.

The tree has grown near Pratt Field off Northampton Road for decades, being cultivated in the 19th century and originating in Dundee, Scotland.

The cost of moving the tree is considered part of the $12.5 million Pratt Field renovations, which are being supported by an anonymous donor, Hanna said.

Members of the Amherst Public Shade Tree Committee, as well as college professors, urged that the Camperdown elm be saved when a new field house, football grandstands and press box, and Lumley Track are built in time for the fall sports season.

Hope Crolius, chairwoman of the Shade Tree Committee, said at the time the college made its decision in September that it was doing “the right thing by changing to conserve this tree and the history it represents.”

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