The Davie Poplar

Have you ever wondered why Davie Poplar looks the way it does? One answer is that’s what a few hundred years will do to you. The longer answer involves hurricanes, wind storms, and other natural disasters. The image above comes from the University of North Carolina magazine and shows Davie Poplar after one of those natural disasters in 1902. University historian and former president Kemp Plummer Battle describes the event below:

“On August 6th there was a fierce wind from the northeast. Coming from an unusual direction there was a sad destruction of venerable trees. There was general grief because the symmetry of the Old, or Davie, Poplar was destroyed. Two immense limbs were torn off and it appeared that the loss was irreparable. Since the disaster, however, the noble and majestic tree has made mighty efforts to renew its boughs and hope is felt that something of its original grace will be restored.” [History of the University of North Carolina. Volume II: From 1868 to 1912, p. 619]